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ORANGE'S SHUMPERT FIRES A RECORD BARRAGE

Too much Preston Shumpert spelled big trouble for Connecticut.

Mired in a two-game shooting slump, Shumpert hit a school-record eight three-pointers and scored 34 points Monday night as No. 17 Syracuse held off Connecticut, 65-60, in a big game for both teams.

Shumpert staked Syracuse (20-6, 8-5 Big East) to a big early lead, then stopped Connecticut's final rally with six points to help give Jim Boeheim his 23rd 20-win season in 25 years as coach.

"I just got some good looks, and I was knocking them down," said Shumpert, who had only 20 points combined in the previous two games, both losses. "In the past few games, it wasn't a problem getting looks, it was just me making shots. During the year I struggled a little bit, but I think now I can just improve."

Syracuse, which had lost three of its last four, led the entire game and handed the Huskies (17-9, 6-7) only their second loss in the last six.

"This was a good win," Boeheim said after his 595th victory in 800 games. "You come off two tough losses in this league, it's good to get this one."

UConn outrebounded Syracuse by 47-34, 26-14 on the offensive glass. But the Huskies' inability to convert many of those second chances was crucial.

"We had courage, we did a nice job of competing, we didn't do a good job of playing," Connecticut coach Jim Calhoun said. "When you get 26 offensive rebounds, you'd like to think you could get 30 points out of that. The two big kids inside (Edmund Saunders and Souleymane Wane) were 1 for 12 (shooting). I just don't know how a team could look so inept inside the paint."

Damone Brown (Seneca) had 12 points and seven rebounds, and Kueth Duany had eight points and three blocks for Syracuse.

Albert Mouring led Connecticut with 17 points, Caron Butler had 15 and 13 rebounds, and Wane had 10 rebounds and five assists.

Connecticut, which never led and trailed by as many as 16 in the first half, got two baskets by Butler to start the second half, the second cutting Syracuse's lead to 42-35 in the first 79 seconds of play.

"That's how we play," said Taliek Brown, who had nine points, four assists and three steals for the Huskies. "We start out kind of slow and just start playing hard in the second half. We can't do that. We've got to play hard for 40 minutes."

A three by Shumpert, his final one of the game, put Syracuse ahead, 48-35, with 16:26 left and eclipsed the old mark he held with Dave Johnson.

Oklahoma nips Missouri

COLUMBIA, Mo. -- The only Oklahoma starter not averaging in double figures made the last-second shot that beat Missouri.

Jameel Heywood, averaging 3.6 points, scored on a follow shot at the buzzer in the 16th-ranked Sooners' 63-61 victory.

"I just went after the rebound and got it and shot it, and I was lucky and it went in," said Heywood, who had nine points. "Definitely, this is my biggest shot."

Heywood followed up Nolan Johnson's miss and scored from the lane for Oklahoma (21-5, 10-4 Big 12). The Sooners have beaten Missouri (17-8, 8-4) six straight times and ended the Tigers' 13-game winning streak at the Hearnes Center, dating to the final game of last season.

The outcome was briefly in doubt although Oklahoma players swarmed a TV cameraman to celebrate. Referee Tom Rucker's call that the basket was good was emphatic, and officials certified the victory after checking the replay monitor.

Missouri coach Quin Snyder wasn't arguing the call.

"I told our guys to be upset, but don't be upset with the tip-in," Snyder said. "Be upset with all the little things we didn't do during the game."

J.R. Raymond had 13 points and Hollis Price 12 for Oklahoma, which has won nine of 10 overall after a 1-3 start in conference play.

Reserve Clarence Gilbert scored 16 points for Missouri.St. Joe's cracks poll

St. Joseph's fans thought their team should have cracked the Associated Press poll a long time ago. After all, the Hawks are off to their best start since 1985-86, winning seven straight and 15 of their last 16. Coach Phil Martelli wasn't worried.

"We knew we were playing good basketball, and if we continued to win the recognition and all the trappings of winning would come," said Martelli, whose Hawks (21-4) entered the Top 25 on Monday at No. 23.

Returning to No. 1 was Stanford after a two-week stay at No. 2. The Cardinal (23-1), which beat California by 88-56 in their only game last week, held the top ranking for four weeks until dropping one spot following their loss to UCLA.

Stanford made its jump following North Carolina's 75-65 loss to Clemson on Sunday. That not only dropped the Tar Heels to No. 2, but ended the nation's longest Division I winning streak at 18 games.

Tennessee tops women's poll

Tennessee replaced Notre Dame atop the Associated Press women's basketball poll Monday, a familiar spot for the Lady Vols but one they haven't held since February 1999.

Tennessee (26-1) received 33 of 40 first-place votes and 992 points from the national media panel, moving up from No. 2 after Notre Dame lost for the first time, 54-53, at Rutgers on Saturday night. The Irish (23-1), who had been the last unbeaten team in Division I, slipped to second with four first-place votes and 950 points.

Connecticut (22-2), is third.

Pitino rejects Rhode Island

SOUTH KINGSTOWN, R.I. -- Rick Pitino is not interested in coaching Rhode Island.

University president Robert Carothers said Pitino had been contacted by the school, but on Monday "expressed his desire not to be further considered for this position."

Pitino, who resigned last month as coach and president of the Boston Celtics, had been on a list of 50 potential candidates for the Rhode Island job.

The Rams are looking to replace Jerry DeGregorio, who resigned last Monday after posting the worst two-year record in school history.

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