HARTFORD, Connecticut (Ticker) -- After a dismal start, Connecticut did the expected against Lehigh.
Ben Gordon scored 19 points and Rashad Anderson added 14 as the fourth-ranked Huskies shook off a sluggish start for a 75-55 victory at the Hartford Civic Center.
Connecticut (5-1) never trailed after scoring the first seven points, but had trouble shaking Lehigh, a heavy underdog. Dayne Mickelson's jumper forged a 24-24 tie late in the first half for the Mountain Hawks.
Anderson made a free throw to break the deadlock as the Huskies ended the half on a 13-2 tear. Gordon drilled a 3-pointer in the closing seconds for a 37-26 halftime bulge.
"Obviously, I would have liked us to play a little bit sharper," Huskies coach Jim Calhoun said. "Not necessarily better, but a little sharper."
Anderson drained back-to-back 3-pointers near the eight-minute mark for a 61-38 cushion. The Huskies gradually pulled away and led by as many as 26 points.
Gordon also had a career-high five steals and freshman Josh Boone blocked five shots as the Huskies relied on their defense. UConn scored 27 points off 22 turnovers.
"We played well enough to do some of the things we would like, but certainly not long enough to accomplish what I wanted for the game tonight," Calhoun said. "That's really the best way to say it."
Gordon made life miserable for Lehigh guard Austen Rowland, who was 2-of-14 for seven points. Rowland was one of four Mountain Hawks with four turnovers.
"You have to get yourself in a mind-set that, 'I'm going to lock my man up,'" Gordon said. "That's something you have to force yourself to do every night until it becomes natural."
Lehigh (1-3) was led by Jose Olivero's 17 points. The Mountain Hawks shot only 33 percent (9-of-27) in the first half.
"I was really proud of the way our guys competed," Lehigh coach Billy Taylor said. "We came out and we tried to execute our game plan, which was not to get into an uptempo contest with Connecticut."
UConn All-American Emeka Okafor, who is suffering from back pain, finished with 10 points, six rebounds and three steals. Denham Brown netted 13 points and was whistled for a technical for taunting in the first half.