Hartford, Conn.—-The Huskies seem to hit their stride early in this young season. And everyone on the team is getting in on the action.
UConn had five double-figure performances, Connecticut beat Coppin State handedly 89-54 to improve to 2-0 on the season. The Huskies broke away from the Eagles halfway through the first half and kept their feet on the gas until the final buzzer.
Adam Sanogo was UConn’s leading scorer, hitting a career-high 20 points for the second consecutive game, on 10 of 13 shooting, while collecting 9 rebounds. The 6-foot-9 sophomore is shooting 19 for 24 this season.
Coppin State (0-4) made four of its first five shots, including a pair of 3-pointers, to take an early 10-6 lead but UConn responded by scoring 14 straight points, the first four by Cole and the next eight by Martin. An nice alley-oop pass from Jalen Gaffney to Akok Akok completed the run.
The Huskies increased their lead to 46-28 at the break.
The Huskies forced the Eagles into 23 turnovers, scoring 28 points off them. In two games, UConn has forced 52 miscues by opponents.
”When in doubt, just give Adama the ball at this point,” UConn forward Tyrese Martin said. ”He’s scoring at a high clip so we’re going to keep giving it to him.”
Also in double figures for the Huskies was grad student R.J. Cole with 16 points, senior Tyrese Martin with 15, junior Akok Akok with 12 and junior Jalen Gaffney came off the bench chipped in 11 points to go with 8 assists.
UConn went on an 11-3 run to start the second half to extend their lead to 57-31 and cruising the rest of the way.
The Huskies held Coppin State to 30.8 percent shooting. The Eagles did not have a player in double figures.
UConn has a simple game plan on offense this season: go to the blocks to Adama Sanogo.
Sanogo shot 10-of-13 from the floor as Coppin State simply had no answer for him whatsoever.
This was thorough domination by UConn. They led in points off turnovers (28-8), total rebounds (50-38), second-chance points (21-6), bench points (33-20), and points in the paint (44-18). They also led in fast-break points (21-9), steals (11-3), assists (24-8), and darn near every other category.
Alex Rojas, playing his first game for Coppin State (0-4), had nine points for the Eagles. Tyree Corbett also scored nine.
”They’re pretty fatigued. We played four games in five nights to start the season against some real high-level opponents,” Coppin State coach Juan Dixon said. ”But I’m proud of our guys. They went out and competed. That (UConn) is a very good basketball team, very well coached.”
UConn coach Dan Hurley says his team essentially has eight starting players at this point, and that depth helped carry the team on Saturday.
”A couple of those eight starters didn’t play particularly well tonight but when you have a deep team and you have that type of quality through your top eight, you can still do relatively well,” Hurley said.
UConn played at the XL Center, its first game at its secondary home arena since an 81-65 win over Central Florida on Feb. 26, 2020. Connecticut played all of their home games at their on-campus arena in Storrs, Gampel Pavilion, in the 2020-21 season because of the pandemic.
The Huskies’ non-conference schedule continues on Wednesday, Nov. 17, when they play Long Island University at Gampel Pavilion, with start time scheduled for 6:30 p.m.