UConn trounces DePaul basketball

depaul basketball

Coming off of a close defeat from Providence in double overtime, DePaul basketball was dealt a less-than-close loss from UConn on Wednesday night when the Huskies beat the Demons 82-61. This brings the Demons’ overall record to 1-2 and still being winless in the Big East.

While both UConn and DePaul have played limited games this season due to various COVID-19 issues, DePaul now has the same amount of games played as games postponed or games canceled.

DePaul began its season on Dec. 23 with a win over Western Illinois after three different COVID-19-related pauses, forcing the cancellation or postponing of its first 10 games. The Huskies also had these problems; they started their season with three wins before having to cancel or postpone their next four games in addition to the postponement of the DePaul-UConn first scheduled meeting for Dec. 23.

When these two teams finally did get to meet, the Demons struggled with shooting the entire night and couldn’t muster the defense to keep the Huskies from scoring. After keeping the Huskies pretty contained for the first 10 minutes, UConn ran away with the lead and never looked back. In the last few minutes of the first half, DePaul scored only three points while UConn answered with 16.

DePaul’s starters struggled to generate offense, as veteran Charlie Moore notched just eight points on 4 of 12 shooting, though, he came into this game averaging 20 points per game. Sophomore forward Romeo Weems, coming off a career-high 21 points in the Demons’ double-overtime loss at Providence, added just six points. DePaul’s leading scorer Darious Hall came off the bench late in the first half and was the only reason the Demons’ were able to stay in the game. Hall finished the night with 14 points on 5 of 8 shooting.

Only two Blue Demons finished in double figures with Hall and Nick Ongenda. Hall played the most complete game of these Demons, making him player of the game. In addition to his 14 points, Hall also added eight rebounds and was perfect from the free throw line. This was also Hall’s 11th career game in double figures.

This was one of DePaul’s worst offensive games of the season. The team finished with season-lows of 23.5% from beyond the arc, making only four buckets on 17 shots, and 64.3% at the free throw line. The Demons’ field goal percentage clocked in at 38.1%, an almost imperceptible amount better than 38% vs. Western Illinois.

“I think they played really well and I don’t think we played very well at all,” DePaul head coach Dave Leitao said at his postgame press conference.

The Blue Demons’ schedule has again been disrupted by COVID-19 related issues in both the Villanova and St. John’s programs. DePaul was set to face off against St. John’s on Jan. 2 and against Villanova on Jan. 5. The Big East has not said when these games will be rescheduled.

DePaul’s next game will be against Seton Hall on Jan. 9 at 2 p.m. ET, marking the Demons’ first home conference game. After that, the Huskies and Blue Demons will face off again on Jan. 11, making up the game that was postponed from Dec. 23.

Photo by Eric Henry | The DePaulia