HARTFORD, Conn. — Aubrey Dawkins has waited for two years, through a transfer and a season-ending injury, for a chance to make an impact at UCF.
The coach’s son scored a season-high 23 points on Saturday, including 16 in the second half, to lead the Knights to their sixth straight win, a 65-53 victory over UConn.
B.J. Taylor added 12 points for UCF (12-2, 2-0 American), which won on the Huskies home floor for the first time in program history.
“That means everything,” said Dawkins, who is averaging just under 16 points a game this season. “It’s a big win for our history and our program and bodes well for our future.”
Alterique Gilbert had 18 points and Christian Vital 15 for UConn (9-6, 0-2), which lost its third straight game.
UCF led just 33-30 halftime, but quickly built that to eight in the second half on two jumpers by Dawkins, the first from beyond the arc after a steal by Tacko Fall.
UConn came back to tie the game at 40 on a 3-pointer from Vital, part of a personal 7-0 run. But UCF forced turnovers on the next five UConn possessions and took control over the final 15 minutes.
A 3-pointer from Taylor with five minutes left gave the Knights a 12-point lead and they kept the Huskies at arms-length the rest of the way.
“There is obviously a gap between us and the better teams that we play,” said UConn coach Dan Hurley. “We’ve just kind of got to keep closing that gap with our efforts this year and building this thing up over time.”