ECU continued its rampant pace as it won all five of its game this week, with an in-conference sweep of UConn this weekend. ECU starter Jake Agnos set new season-highs Thursday with 8.2 innings of one run ball and 14 strikeouts. There was a double header Saturday that started with a seven-inning game, which ECU took 5-2. In game one, the Pirates threw four different pitchers, with none going more than 2 innings. Spencer Brickhouse led ECU to the sweep-clinching win in game two of the double-header. He drove in five of the nine runs they scored and hit two bombs that put the game out of reach of the UConn comeback. A four-run eighth inning propelled the Pirates past UNCW Tuesday. Another big eighth inning against Old Dominion helped ECU stave off a late comeback Wednesday.
We have reached the halfway point in conference play: Four series down, four to go. While the Huskies duke it out with the first place ECU ballclub, Tulane sits in second and trails the Pirates by just a game. We’re here to take a look at all the conference weekend action in this edition of Around the American.
In just four short days at Mohegan Sun in Uncasville, CT, 11 American Athletic Conference games were played to determine the league’s top dog. And while UConn ultimately won the tournament over USF, 66-45, there was still plenty of action to talk about, including a first round overtime finish and a semifinal battle between two of the conference’s premier schools.
The final week of conference play is upon us! Now, halfway through the first week of March, teams in The American are closing out their regular season schedules and getting ready for the conference tournament. Houston has controlled the conference for almost the entire season, while Cincinnati and UCF have not been far behind as each of the three clinched a first round bye in next week’s conference tournament.
Houston: In their two games, No. 9 Houston continued its fantastic season as it beat UConn and Tulane this past week. Houston (25-1, 12-1) took down UConn (13-12, 4-8) by the score of 71-63 Thursday. DeJon Jerreau showed out for Houston, dropping 18 points and dishing seven assists in just 22 minutes off the bench. Houston then beat down Tulane (4-20, 0-12) by 35 points Sunday. Led by Corey Davis Jr. and Armoni Brooks, Houston earned its 10th straight win. Davis put up 26 points with eight made threes, two assists and three boards in 30 minutes. Brooks added 24 points with six rebounds and a steal in 32 minutes. The Cougars allowed a combined 13 points from Tulane’s bench players compared to 23 from its bench.
As the fall semester is coming to a close for students, college basketball is just hitting its stride as most teams have played eight games at this point. While there is still time for growth, the power amongst The American has seemingly been set, with two of the top teams already carrying sizeable winning streaks.
The last time we checked in with UConn’s conference opponents, they were just getting their feet wet with the rest of the college basketball world, most with only one or two games under their belt. Over halfway through non-conference play, we might not be able to draw concrete conclusions about quality yet, but some teams have gotten off to hotter starts than others.
It’s still early in the season, but the returns on UConn men’s basketball have sure been promising so far. Huskies fans might have reason to scoreboard-watch around the conference for the first time in a few years, so here’s how the rest of the teams in the American have started out their respective seasons.