Purvis Scores 30 to Lead UConn Over USF in AAC Tournament - NBC Connecticut
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Purvis Scores 30 to Lead UConn Over USF in AAC Tournament

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Purvis Scores 30 to Lead UConn Over USF in AAC Tournament
    AP
    Connecticut fans before an NCAA college basketball game against Cincinnati in Storrs, Conn., Sunday, March 5, 2017. Cincinnati won 67-47.

    Rodney Purvis scored a career-high 30 points and UConn beat South Florida 77-66 on Thursday night in the first round of the American Athletic Conference Tournament.

    Amida Brimah added 13 points and Christian Vital had 11 for the Huskies (15-16), who snapped a four-game losing streak.

    Geno Thorpe scored 23 points for South Florida (7-23), which lost six in a row and 18 of its final 19 games to end the season.

    UConn led by 13 points at halftime and 15 after a Brimah dunk to open the second half.

    But USF went on a 10-0 run from there, and cut the lead to two points several times in the second half. It was 67-65 after a 3-pointer by Thorpe with just under 3 minutes left.

    But he fouled out less than a minute later and the Huskies scored 10 of the game's final 11 points. A 3-pointer by Purvis with 35 seconds left sealed the win.

    Purvis had 13 in the first half, including a driving two-handed dunk and 3-pointer on consecutive possessions that sparked a 14-2 UConn run that turned a 25-24 game into a 39-26 lead.

    BIG PICTURE

    South Florida interim coach Murry Bartow was 1-16 after replacing Orlando Antigua in January. He has publicly expressed his desire to get the job on a permanent basis, but several other names have been linked to the position.

    South Florida is one of just four Division I teams with no senior on its roster, so whoever it the coach next season will have a number of returning players to work with. Bartow took over a 6-7 program in January after Orlando Antigua was fired two games into the conference season.

    UConn's Jalen Adams scored eight points while playing his third straight game with a sprained left ankle. Vance Jackson, the Huskies biggest 3-point threat, was cleared to play after missing the last game with a concussion. He finished with seven points.

    UP NEXT

    South Florida: Season is over.

    UConn: The Huskies will Houston in the final quarterfinal on Friday night. The tip is set for 9 p.m

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