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Marquette Wire

The student news site of Marquette University

Marquette Wire

No. 18 Marquette falls 80-72 to No. 24 UConn

Photo by Collin Nawrocki
Redshirt first-year forward Olivier-Maxence Prosper (12) heads to the basket in then-No. 24 Marquette men’s basketball’s 83-73 win over then-No. 12 Villanova Feb. 2.

Coming into Tuesday night’s road matchup ranked No. 18 in the country, the team’s highest ranking all season, the Marquette men’s basketball team fell to No. 24 UConn 80-72 in Hartford, Connecticut. 

Tuesday night’s battle at the XL Center was for sole possession of third place in the BIG EAST Standings, which saw the Huskies come out on top for the season sweep over the Golden Eagles.  

Redshirt first-year forward Olivier-Maxence Prosper came out firing for Marquette, scoring the team’s first 10 out of 18 points in the game.  

Prosper’s perfect first half (4-for-4 from the field) was overshadowed by the offensive play of the Huskies however, as UConn shot 59% from the field and 63% from deep in the opening 20 minutes.  

Sophomore forward Adama Sanogo had 14 points on 7-of-13 shooting and 6 rebounds for the Huskies in the first half alone. Sanogo finished the night with a dominant double-double of 24 points and 15 rebounds.  

UConn’s plan of attack in the first half was to get out in transition and keep Marquette on its heels, which fared pretty well as the Huskies won the fast break battle 15-1 in the first half.  

Redshirt junior guard Greg Elliott kept the Golden Eagles within striking distance with 10 points off the bench in the first half as Marquette trailed 46-36 at halftime. Elliott finished with 17 points on 3-of-6 shooting from beyond the arc on the night. 

The Golden Eagles clawed their way back into the game in the second half however, with strong play from both sides of the ball.  

Back-to-back 3-pointers from Darryl Morsell and Elliott put Marquette within three points at 53-50 with 13:29 left in the game.  

 The Golden Eagles would then go cold and miss their next 11 shots, however and found themselves trailing 63-52 with just under eight minutes to play.  

Despite trailing by double-digits yet again, Marquette responded with an 8-0 run this time, cutting the lead to 63-60 after Morsell hit a deep 3-pointer over the outstretched arm of Sanogo with 5:32 left in the game.  

Missed opportunities on the offensive end and the inability to stop the Huskies from getting second-chance looks doomed the Golden Eagles down the stretch amid the road defeat.  

After a second-chance put-back from Tyrese Martin put UConn up 75-67 with 1:50 left, Prosper immediately turned the ball over back into the hands of the Huskies where they would then have possession until 50 seconds left thanks to three offensive rebounds in a row.  

Failure to prevent offensive rebounds has been a common theme all season long for Marquette and certainly played a factor tonight as the Huskies out-rebounded the Golden Eagles 46-27 throughout the contest.  

As was the case in their loss Jan. 31 against Providence, Marquette struggled with second chance opportunities Tuesday night as the Huskies finished with a 20-11 advantage.

Prosper finished with a team-high 18 points on 7-of-8 shooting while redshirt first-year forward Justin Lewis posted 17 points on 7-of-14 shooting and nine rebounds for the Golden Eagles.  

UConn is now 4-0 against Marquette since rejoining the BIG EAST in the 2020-21 season.  

With the loss, Marquette (16-8, 8-5 BIG EAST) will now look to recoup against Butler Feb. 12. Saturday’s matchup against the Bulldogs will be the first time the two sides have met this season. Tip-off in Indianapolis is set for 3:30 p.m. CST on FS1.  

This story was written by Sam Arco. He can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter @SamArcoMU.

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