ORLANDO — The UConn Huskies are back in the NCAA Tournament and confident they have what it takes to make another strong run.
"I think our style travels very, very well because we play defense," coach Kevin Ollie said after Sunday's 72-58 victory over Memphis in the American Athletic Conference title game gave his team the league's automatic NCAA berth.
"You play defense, and that allows us to win championships, and that's what we hang our hats on," Ollie added. "No matter where we're at, we're going to play defense, we're going to give our offense an opportunity to step up."
Up next is a trip to Des Moines, Iowa, as the No. 9 seed in the South Region, where the Huskies (24-10) will face eighth-seeded Colorado.
UConn won its fourth national championship two years ago but wasn't eligible to make the NCAA field in 2015.
"It's been a long time, it feels like," senior Omar Calhoun said. "Last year was disappointing, but we knew when we started the season, we were going to work extremely hard to get back to the top."
Shonn Miller and Sterling Gibbs scored 13 each and Daniel Hamilton had a double double for the third straight day for the Huskies, who needed Jalen Adams' 65-foot, buzzer-beating shot to force a fourth overtime in the quarterfinals against Cincinnati.
"It's definitely a wonderful shot, but we had to be in that situation to get that shot," Ollie said.