UConn beats Syracuse; Calhoun nets 500th win at school

STORRS, Conn. -- Connecticut coach Jim Calhoun picked up his 500th win at the school Monday, a 67-60 victory over Syracuse and longtime rival and friend Jim Boeheim.

Craig Austrie led five UConn players in double figures with 14. Jeff Adrien and A.J. Price each had 12 and Jerome Dyson and Marcus Johnson chipped in 10 each for UConn (15-8, 4-6 Big East), which has won two in a row after a five-game losing streak.

Demetris Nichols led all scorers with 20 points for Syracuse (16-8, 5-5) including 13 to keep his team in the game in the second half. Paul Harris and Eric Devendorf each had 13 for the Orange.

Syracuse committed 25 fouls and played most of the second half with three key players in foul trouble. Darryl Watkins picked up his fourth 11 seconds into the second half. Terrance Roberts joined him on the bench with 14:24 remaining and Matt Gorman got his fourth with 8:16 left.

Roberts came back in, but fouled out of the game with 6:07 remaining and Syracuse up 57-55.

UConn scored the next eight points, the last on a free throw by Hasheem Thabeet after Watkins picked up his fifth foul with 3:42 remaining.

Dyson sealed the win, hitting three key free throws and intercepting a pass from Devendorf down the stretch.

Syracuse jumped out to an early 16-9 lead as UConn had trouble handling the Orange's 2-3 zone, and hit just three of their first 10 shots.

But the guard play of Price and Austrie kept the Huskies in the game. Price connected on back-to-back 3-pointers to make the score 16-15 with 8:30 to go before intermission. When Austrie hit a 3-pointer, and Marcus Johnson followed with a dunk off a Thabeet block, UConn had a 22-21 lead.

The Huskies led 28-27 at the break.

The Orange used a 5-0 run to take a 41-40 lead, but Adrien rallied UConn with two buckets, the second on a fast-break sparked by Thabeets's second block.

Neither team shot well, UConn hitting on just under 36 percent from the floor, while holding Syracuse to 38 percent.

Calhoun has a career mark of 500-185 at UConn and is 748-322 in his 35-year Hall of Fame coaching career, good enough for 12th place on the Division I all-time wins list. Boeheim, another Hall of Famer, is 742-261 in his 31st year at Syracuse, and in 14th place on that list.

UConn honored 13 of its greatest players and three coaches, including Calhoun, at halftime, by placing their names and numbers on the wall at Gampel Pavilion.