ST. THOMAS, U.S. Virgin Islands — Shabazz Napier scored all 16 of his points in the final 10 minutes and Ryan Boatright also scored 16 to lead No. 23 Connecticut to a 77-71 victory over Wake Forest in the Paradise Jam on Friday.
Napier scored 10 points during a 12-0 run that put the Huskies ahead for good midway through the second half. UConn (3-0) took a 65-55 lead on DeAndre Daniels' driving layup with 6:18 remaining.
Wake Forest (1-1) pulled to 73-69 on Travis McKie's 3-pointer with 53 seconds left, but Napier knocked down four free throws over the final 28 seconds to clinch it for UConn.
Enosch Wolf and Daniels each added 12 points for the Huskies, while Wolf, a 7-foot-1 junior, had six rebounds.
Codi Miller-McIntyre led the Demon Deacons with 21 points, C.J. Harris added 17 and McKie had 16.
In a back-and-forth affair that saw eight lead changes and two ties, UConn made five of its final six shots in the first half to take a 36-32 lead into halftime. Daniels had 10 points at the break.
Wake Forest went on a 10-0 run, highlighted by consecutive 3-pointers from McKie and Arnaud William Adala Moto, to take a 50-46 lead with 12:08 left.
Napier hit a driving layup to bring the Huskies within one, then Wolf's 17-foot jumper from the wing put UConn ahead for good, 53-52.
Boatright, a 6-foot guard, led UConn with seven rebounds.
The Huskies shot just 3 for 18 from 3-point range but made 80 percent (24 for 30) of their free throws. Wake Forest went just 55 percent (12 for 22) from the foul line and turned the ball over 18 times.
McKie grabbed eight rebounds for the Demon Deacons and Devin Thomas had seven.
UConn, which won the Paradise Jam in its last appearance at the event in 2008, will now face either Iona or Quinnipiac on Sunday night. Wake Forest will face the loser of tonight's Iona-Quinnipiac game on Saturday.