Hasheem Thabeet of UConn blocks a shot by Greg Nero of Fairfield during the first half. Thabeet scored 20 points, grabbed 11 rebounds and blocked 6 shots - Hartford Courant photo

Jim Calhoun was worried how his No. 2/2 UConn Huskies team would respond after a big win last weekend and the Christmas break. And with a much improved Fairfield Stags team coming in, Calhoun had the right to be worried.

But he didn’t have to worry too much as Jeff Adrien and Hasheem Thabeet combined for 41 points to help the Huskies to a 77-55 win over the Stags in front of 13,771 at the XL Center in Hartford, CT.

The win for the Huskies improves their record to 11-0 while the Stags drop to 8-4 on the season. This is the 64th straight win for UConn over an in-state opponent and the 18th straight against Fairfield. The loss for the Stags ended a 7-game winning streak.

Connecticut's Jeff Adrien scores a basket during the first half of an NCAA college men's basketball game against Fairfield, in Hartford, CT - AP PhotoAdrien led the Huskies in scoring, picking up his 37th career double-double with 21 points and 14 rebounds. Thabeet had a double-double of his own with 20 points and 11 rebounds. Thabeet also added 6 blocked shots. Jerome Dyson was the only other Husky in double figures with 10 points and led the team with 6 assists. Kemba Walker broke out of a little slump to chip in with 9 points and 4 assists.

Fairfield was led by Greg Nero’s 16 points. Jonathan Han added 8 points and 6 assists while Anthony Johnson had 6 points and 9 rebounds.

Both teams got off to slow starts as it took the Stags almost 3 minutes to get their first basket to tie the game up at 2. After the Huskies took a 9-5 lead, the Stags put together a 6-0 run to take a 2 point lead.  After Adrien scored the next 4 points to put UConn up by 2, Mike Evanovich hit a 3-pointer to put the Stags back up front at 14-13.

Jim Calhoun called a timeout at that point and it was all Huskies after that as 8-0 run sparked by Thabeet and Adrien put the Huskies out in front. The run turned out to be a 21-5 run that gave the Huskies a 42-26 lead at the half.

The Huskies will face another test when they open up Big East play on Monday night against the No.9  Georgetown Hoyas at the XL Center.

Notes and musings:

Fairfield Stags @ UConn Huskies 12.26.08 box score

The starters were A.J. Price, Jerome Dyson, Craig Austrie, Jeff Adrien and Hasheem Thabeet.

Connecticut associate head coach George Blaney, left, shakes hands son, Fairfield University assistant coach Brian Blaney, right, at the end of an NCAA college men's basketball game in Hartford, CT - AP PhotoFairfield assistant coach Brian Blaney is the son of UConn associate head coach George Blaney.

Fairfield’s Mike Evanovich is the brother of former UConn player and current graduate manager Justin Evanovich.

For the sixth time in Jim Calhoun’s 23 seasons at Connecticut, the Huskies are unbeaten through ten games of the season.

With the win over Gonzaga, UConn has now won seven straight against ranked opponents dating back to last season. The Huskies are 3-0 against ranked foes in 2008- 09 with wins over the Zags, Wisconsin and Miami.

UConn starts the season 11-0 for the first time since the 2006-07 season.

This 75-55 result is the closest Fairfield has been in its last six games against UConn. The Huskies won the previous five games by at least 24 points.

Jeff Adrien has 37 career double-doubles, the most among active Big East players.

Hasheem Thabeet has 15 career double-doubles and the Huskies are 14-1 when he records a double-double.

UConn shot 50% (31-of-62) from the floor while the  Stags shot just 31.9% (23-of-72).

The Huskies had 22 assists on their 31 made baskets.

UConn won the battle of the boards 44-39.

The Huskies were 10-of-15 (66.7%) from the charity stripe.

UConn outscored Fairfield 48-22 in the paint.

The Huskies scored 16 points off of 10 Stags turnovers while committing just 9 of their own.

UConn had 18 second chance points and outscored the Stags 13-6 on the fastbreak.