Jan. 27, 2010
PHILADELPHIA - Massachusetts outlasted Saint Joseph's, 87-80, in Atlantic 10 men's basketball action at Hagan Arena, to snap the Hawks' three-game winning streak. Both teams now have records of 8-12 overall and 2-4 in the Atlantic 10.
Ricky Harris led the Minutemen with 23 points and eight rebounds, while Terrell Vinson scored 16 points and grabbed nine boards. Freddie Riley hit four 3-pointers in the second half to finish with 14 points.
The loss ruined a solid all-around effort by SJU's Garrett Williamson, who had 16 points and tied his career-high with 10 assists, while recording three blocks and six steals. Idris Hilliard had 14 points, Todd O'Brien had 12 and three blocks and Carl Jones scored 11.
The game saw seven lead changes, five ties and a number of lengthy runs. Massachusetts took the lead for good with 12:33 to play, as Freddie Riley hit consecutive 3-pointers to give the visitors a 62-56 lead. UMass would end the 15-4 run owning a 69-58 lead with 9:17 to play.
Saint Joseph's fought back and came within 71-67 on a jumper by Bryant Irwin, but Vinson scored four straight points to build UMass' lead back up to 75-67 with 3:23 to go. UMass would convert 10-of-13 from the foul line in the final three minutes to keep the game out of reach.
"We had too many empty possessions at both ends of the floor. Our offense just hurried at times, we took shots without purpose and there were dropped balls. We only had 10 turnovers but we were dribbling into traps at the beginning of the game and then we shot 7 of 14 from the foul line (in the second half). It's a formula for disaster and is very disappointing," said Saint Joseph's head coach Phil Martelli.
"We deserve better because we've been playing better. We looked tired with thethree games in five days and we thought tired. We didn't fight through and we had chances in both halves, worked our tails off to get back in the second half and we step off a known 3-point shooter (Riley) for them to tie. We have to go back to work, that's why we're 8-12, all the warts were there."
The Hawks jumped out at the start of the game, going up 20-14 at the midway mark. Massachusetts would turn that around with a 16-2 run, and eventually led 35-23 with 4:05. Saint Joseph's closed out the half with a 14-4 run as Williamson had a hand in every point. He scored six points and assisted on 3-pointers by Justin Crosgile and Jones, and a jumper by O'Brien.
Both teams shot over 45 percent from the field in the game, but the Hawks were just 12-for-20 from the foul line.