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Three of Big East's best have bad day
Syracuse, Connecticut, Villanova all lose

In the cutthroat Big East, each game can be a minefield. Three of the conference's four Top 10 teams found that out Saturday afternoon.

Two of the teams that lost, No. 5 Connecticut and No. 8 Villanova, were beaten by other Big East teams in the top 25. The Huskies lost at home to No. 23 Louisville, 79-78 in double overtime while the Wildcats also lost at home, to No. 21 Georgetown, 69-66.

Syracuse, tied for ninth in the nation, lost to unranked Marquette, 76-70, in Milwaukee.

Connecticut held Louisville's three-point shooters in check for most of their Big East showdown, but that left Peyton Siva free to drive the lane.

The sophomore point guard scored 19 points, including two key layups in the second overtime, for the Cardinals.

"We don't have no superstars on this team and that helps us out a lot, because we know anybody can take that last shot," Siva said. "I got to the lane, I made a couple layups and that was important."

Terrence Jennings added 16 points and 10 rebounds, and Preston Knowles and Kyle Kuric each added 15 points for Cardinals (17-4, 6-2 Big East), who have won four of their last five games to take sole possession of second place in the Big East.

The loss snapped a six-game winning streak for UConn (17-3, 5-3).

In Philadelphia, Georgetown's Austin Freeman took over the game. His teammates knew he was doing it and had no problem about it.

"We wanted to concentrate on getting the ball to Austin," Georgetown point guard Chris Wright said. "It's stupid not to give him the ball."

The Hoyas (16-5, 5-4) were smart enough to make sure Freeman had the ball in the final minutes. The senior responded by scoring 10 of Georgetown's final 12 points -- he had an assist on the other two -- and finished with 30.

"Austin Freeman is unflappable in most situations," Georgetown coach John Thompson III said. "What he did in the last 4 minutes is indicative of what he's done for the last four years."

Georgetown entered the game second in the nation in field goal percentage (50.8) and finished 24 of 46 (52.2 percent).

The Wildcats (17-4, 5-3) cut the lead to one point three times in the final 1:15 and each time Freeman found a way to get the lead back to three.

Syracuse showed some improvement in its play over the previous three games, just not enough improvement.

Jae Crowder scored 13 of his 25 points in the second half as Marquette (14-8, 5-4 Big East) handed the Orange (18-4, 5-4) its fourth straight loss.

It was all too familiar to Syracuse head coach Jim Boeheim.

"The first half we weren't defending, guys were getting past us too much," he said.

Scoop Jardine, who finished with 13 points and 13 assists, scored on a reverse layup that came off a turnover to cap a 25-14 run, erased Marquette's 11-point halftime lead and tied the game at 56 with 8:18 to go. But Syracuse never could take the lead in the game.

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