Recap: Louisville vs. Connecticut
Louisville, KY (SportsNetwork.com) - Montrezl Harrell had 20 points and 11 rebounds as No. 11 Louisville thrashed 19th-ranked Connecticut 81-48 to earn a share of the inaugural American Athletic Conference regular-season title.
Luke Hancock scored 16 points and freshly named Wooden Award finalist Russ Smith dished out a personal-best 13 assists for the Cardinals (26-5, 15-3 American), who joined No. 15 Cincinnati atop the league standings.
Cincinnati won a coin flip to claim the top seed for next week's conference tournament. UConn is the No. 4 seed.
DeAndre Daniels had 17 points and eight rebounds for UConn (24-7, 12-6), while leading scorer Shabazz Napier was held to nine points on 2-of-13 shooting, including 1-of-10 from 3-point range. Napier is also a finalist for the Wooden Award.
Louisville's defense stifled the Huskies, limiting them to season-worst 29.4 percent shooting and forcing 22 turnovers.
"It was great that we played that kind of defense and it's why we have established so many great memories," said Louisville head coach Rick Pitino. "The guys just played great basketball at both ends."
The Cardinals raced out to a 17-5 lead and never looked back.
Louisville went on a 12-2 run after UConn got within seven early in the second frame. Harrell capped the burst with a dunk, extending the Cardinals' advantage to 44-27 with 15:28 remaining.
The game gradually turned into a rout. Terry Rozier nailed a 3-pointer to make it 65-38 with a little over eight minutes to play.
"We weren't ready to play. (Louisville) took advantage of everything," said UConn head coach Kevin Ollie.Game Notes
Wayne Blackshear had 11 points and Stephan Van Treese grabbed 13 rebounds for
Louisville ... The Huskies were 3-of-22 from beyond the arc.