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Hardy, Red Storm down No. 10 Huskies

Feb 11, 2011 - 5:42 AM New York, NY (Sports Network) - Dwight Hardy finished with a career-high 33 points as St. John's handled No. 10 Connecticut, 89-72, at Madison Square Garden.

D.J. Kennedy added 20 points and a game-high 11 rebounds for the Red Storm (14-9, 6-5 Big East), who bounced back from their loss to UCLA on Saturday to win for the third time in four games. Paris Horne added 12 points and Malik Boothe posted nine in a reserve role.

"Any time you come off a loss you wonder 'What if we lose two games in a row?'" Hardy said. "We didn't let that happen tonight."

Roscoe Smith paced the Huskies (18-5, 6-5) with 16 points. Kemba Walker added 15 points and reigning Big East Rookie of the Week Jeremy Lamb scored 13 in the loss.

"We just played very poorly," Huskies coach Jim Calhoun said. "They in turn played well, they took us completely out of the game."

St. John's raced out to a quick 12-6 lead after Justin Brownlee connected on a three-pointer at 14:10. However, Walker made a triple of his own to get the Huskies started.

It took several minutes to overcome the deficit, but another Walker three at 8:19 gave UConn their first lead of the game, 19-17. The lead was short-lived, though, as Horne peppered the rim with a triple at 7:17 to start an 11-0 St. John's run to create some distance.

Kennedy added five in the spurt, and capped the run with a three-point conversion at 4:20. The Red Storm held tight and took a 35-31 lead into the break. Hardy led the way with 12 points in the opening 20 minutes.

The Red Storm opened the second half with an 8-0 run, capped by a Kennedy dunk at 18:02 to put the game away, and after Alex Oriakhi connected on a three- point play on the Huskies' next trip down the court, Horne added another three to push St John's lead back to 12.

Their lead reached as high as 24 down the stretch and never fell below 12 throughout the duration.

Game Notes

St. John's leads the all-time series 34-27, including back-to-back wins, following a nine-game losing streak...Red Storm coach Steve Lavin now owns 32 career wins against ranked opponents...The Huskies went 1-1 on a quick road trip...All five of UConn's loses this season have come against conference opponents...St. John's improved to 6-0 in Big East play when leading at the half.