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Dyson, Adrien lead UConn to tournament title

Nov 25, 2008 - 6:05 AM ST. THOMAS, Virgin Islands (Ticker) -- Jerome Dyson scored 21 points and Jeff Adrien added 14 and nine rebounds as second-ranked Connecticut captured the Paradise Jam tournament title on Monday with a 76-57 victory over No. 19 Wisconsin.

Freshman Kemba Walker chipped in 12 points for the Huskies (5-0), who shot 52 percent (25-of-48) from the floor.

Connecticut forced 22 turnovers and recorded a win over a top-25 team for the second straight game.

"Certainly a very good win against a good field," UConn coach Jim Calhoun told the Hartford Courant. "If we play with this kind of energy, we'll be a tough out the entire year. We are the most energized club, and we are fast."

Wisconsin had a slight edge for most of the first half but Connecticut finished strong.

A.J. Price had a pair of 3-pointers and Dyson scored five points as the Huskies went on a 19-4 run over the final 8:11 of the first half to take a 38-28 bulge into the locker rooms.

Dyson had 16 points on 6-of-7 shooting in the first half as UConn shot 65 percent (15-of-23) in the opening 20 minutes.

The Badgers used an 8-1 run to climb within 45-43 but the Huskies scored the next seven points to extend the lead to 52-43 with 10:37 remaining.

Wisconsin (4-1) never got back in it as Walker scored four quick points during a 9-1 spurt to give Connecticut a 69-52 lead with 4:31 to play and the Huskies cruised to the finish.

"That's a very difficult team to play from behind against," Wisconsin coach Bo Ryan told the Courant. "The key was to keep it tight, but once they separated by 10 again, do you have another push? We didn't. It got away."

Hasheem Thabeet had nine points, eight rebounds and three blocks for the Huskies and was named the tournament's Most Valuable Player.

"We had a lot of energy," Thabeet told the newspaper. "That was a key."

Keaton Nankivil scored 11 points to lead Wisconsin, which shot 38 percent (19-of-50) from the floor.