Connecticut has little room for error in its quest for NCAA Tournament consideration.
But amid a 3-5 stretch that followed its 7-1 start, the Huskies on Tuesday will face an improved Georgetown squad that will make it tough for Dan Hurley's group to add to their tournament resume.
Looking to avoid a fourth road loss in five games, UConn eyes its first away win over the Hoyas since 2005 in the Big East contest at Washington, D.C.
UConn (10-6, 7-6 in Big East) is firmly on the NCAA Tournament bubble. After beating Xavier and Providence by a combined 20 points, the Huskies fell 68-60 at then-No. 10 Villanova on Saturday. Star James Bouknight (20.1 points per game) had 21 points with 10 rebounds for UConn, which hung with the Wildcats for the first 30 minutes before making just one field goal over a 6:30 stretch that ultimately doomed its fate.
UConn made just 36.4 percent of its shots, including 25.9 percent from 3-point range (7 of 27). The Huskies have shot 39.5 percent while losing three of the last four on the road.
"We need to focus on limiting mistakes," Bouknight said, according to the Hartford Courant.
The sophomore from Brooklyn has scored 39 points in two games since returning from an elbow injury that sidelined him for more than a month.
UConn last played longtime-rival Georgetown in January 2017, a 72-69 defeat that extended its road losing streak against the Hoyas to five games. The Huskies last won at Georgetown on Jan. 8, 2005.
But these are not the same Hoyas that started the season with a 2-8 record. Georgetown (7-10, 5-7) has won four of six and will be looking for a season-high third straight win following home victories over Butler and Seton Hall.
In defeating Seton Hall 81-75 on Saturday, Jamorko Pickett had 20 points, Chudier Bile scored 16, Dante Harris had 14 with eight assists, and Qudus Wahab added 11 points with 11 rebounds. Georgetown made half of its 56 shot attempts, including 10 of 16 from 3-point range.
It was the fourth time in five games that the Hoyas have shot at least 50 percent, and they are 21 of 38 from beyond the arc in the last two. The 6-foot-9 Pickett (12.7 ppg) is averaging 15.4 points while shooting 53.1 percent in those five games. Bile averages 9.6 for the season, but 14.5 over the last six games.
"I still think our biggest win is yet to come," Georgetown coach Patrick Ewing said. "Now, we have to get ready for a very talented Connecticut team. If we take care of our business and go into the Big East tournament on a high note, then anything is possible."
--Field Level Media