The UConn men’s basketball team will host New Hampshire at Gampel Pavilion on Tuesday.
The Huskies are coming off a 100-56 romp in their season opener last week against Maine. Graduate transfer Sterling Gibbs paced UConn with a game-high 20 points.
“They won 19 games last year,” UConn head coach Kevin Ollie said. “They have four starters back.”
The Wildcats (1-0) easily dispatched Lyndon State in their season opener, 82-45.
UNH returns four starters to a team that led the America East conference with 67.1 points per game last year.
Amongst the returning starters is reigning America East Rookie of the Year Tanner Leisner. He averaged 12.8 points per game and 7.5 rebounds per game.
The Wildcats are coached by Bill Herrion and were picked to finish fourth in the conference in a preseason poll.
“They’re a great team. It’s going to be a challenge for us. They’re going to come out and play,” Ollie said. “They’ll present us a different challenge. We need to be ready to go out and play solid basketball.”
The Huskies (1-0) are coming off a dynamic all around game. Four players, Amida Brimah, Rodney Purvis, Shonn Miller and Gibbs, cracked double figures. UConn blocked 15 shots, the most in a game since the 2004-05 season. Brimah set his career high in blocks with nine, coming one shy of the school record held by Emeka Okafor, Donyell Marshall and Hasheem Thabeet.
“We just played UConn defense,” Ollie said. “That’s playing solid, keeping our man in front of us and when you got the big fella back there, if he’s not blocking shots, he’s altering shots.”
This will be the 117th meeting between UConn and New Hampshire, a former Yankee Conference colleague. The first matchup was in the 1906-07 season. The Huskies hold a 91-25 edge in the series and have won the last eight games.
Senior forward Phil Nolan will be active and available to play after missing the opener against Maine due to a foot injury.