Thabeet struggles as UConn loses 82-73 to Spartans Print
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Saturday, 04 April 2009 14:45
NCAAB Headline News


 DETROIT (AP) -At 7-foot-3, Connecticut center Hasheem Thabeet was the biggest player on the floor.
He didn't play that way.
The Big East's co-player of the year led UConn with 17 points in the Huskies' 82-73 loss to Michigan State in the national semifinals on Saturday night. But Thabeet wasn't the intimidating presence the top-seeded Huskies (31-5) needed against a gritty Spartans squad toughened by the physical Big Ten.
Thabeet had six rebounds - fewer than three Michigan State starters - and blocked only two shots.
Thabeet had averaged a double-double this year with, 13.5 points and 10.9 rebounds per game. He also had 4.3 blocks per game.
Thabeet left the game with 1:26 to play, limping off the court and reclining on the floor behind the baseline. A trainer worked on Thabeet's legs, and the Huskies star soon returned to the floor.
Ariz.
Thabeet looked as if he might dominate the game when he swatted a shot by Michigan State forward Raymar Morgan in the game's second minute. But the towering Thabeet's only other block didn't come until late in the second half.
Thabeet usually makes the lane a no-fly zone for opposing offenses. But the Spartans attacked the basket at will, scoring 34 points in the paint.
 

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