Scrolling Headlines:

SGA announces annual ‘Mullins Live!’ concert for March 3 weekend -

February 21, 2017

Best-selling author Roxane Gay talks about modern day feminism at Mount Holyoke College -

February 21, 2017

Protesters perform in front of Springfield City Hall to absent mayor -

February 21, 2017

UMass swimming and diving finish third at Atlantic 10 championships -

February 21, 2017

UMass tennis splits weekend matches with Army, Boston College -

February 21, 2017

Senior Day highlights lack of bench presence for UMass women’s basketball -

February 21, 2017

UMass men’s lacrosse drops close game against No. 20 Ohio State in Columbus -

February 21, 2017

UMass women’s lacrosse splits weekend trip in Florida -

February 21, 2017

UMass club hockey focused on regionals despite shutout loss to Northeastern -

February 21, 2017

UMass women’s basketball’s late comeback falls short in loss to La Salle Sunday -

February 21, 2017

Social media is killing political discourse -

February 21, 2017

Is America moving left or right? -

February 21, 2017

Adidas makes return to relevance -

February 21, 2017

Weekly children’s literature series at Mount Holyoke kicks off with Mordicai Gerstein -

February 21, 2017

Local blogger Larry Kelley dies in car crash, remembered by community -

February 20, 2017

‘Stopping Genocide and Mass Atrocities by Stopping the War Profiteers’ talk at UMass -

February 19, 2017

UMass hockey falls to No. 6 UMass Lowell for third time this season -

February 18, 2017

UMass hockey breakdown in final minutes of the second period on route to 5-2 loss to UMass Lowell -

February 18, 2017

Notebook: Jack Gibbs stars as UMass men’s basketball team drops game to Davidson Saturday -

February 18, 2017

UMass men’s basketball drops another close game, falls to Davidson Saturday afternoon -

February 18, 2017

Minutemen win second straight over St. Joseph’s

The Massachusetts men’s basketball team employed an 11-minute defensive stand and held on down the stretch against Saint Joseph’s to earn itself a 70-62 victory and its first back-to-back wins this year.

“I’m happy we got to come away with a win,” UMass coach Derek Kellogg said. “Our guys fought through, started winning the 50-50 balls, rebounding a little better, and we had stretches where we played great defense.”

Kellogg said he believes his team is starting to make strides and become more seasoned.

“We’re growing up as a team, getting more mature,” Kellogg said. “We’re getting better in practice defensively, so that’s carrying over to games, and my team’s looking like they know what they’re doing.”

Up 19-14, with 10 minutes, 28 seconds to play in the first, the Hawks relinquished their lead when they were forced into 13 consecutive missed field goals and six turnovers. Following a 16-0 run, the Minutemen jumped out to a commanding 30-19 halftime advantage.

St. Joe’s coach Phil Martelli complimented the UMass defensive effort.

“They were better defensively than they’ve been,” Martelli said. “They were more active and energized.”

The Minutemen defense held the Hawks to 36 percent shooting from the field, including 26 percent in the first half.

After carrying a scoreless drought into the locker room, St. Joseph’s came out enlivened on the offensive end, getting off the scoring snide with a Garret Williamson (19 points) jumper 35 seconds into the period.

Both teams traded baskets until the Hawks shaved the lead down to 38-32 with free throws and a Carl Jones 3-pointer just under eight minutes into the half. UMass extended its lead out to nine with a long-ball by guard Ricky Harris, who led all scorers with 27 points.

With 6:47 remaining, Harris gave the Minutemen their largest lead of the game, driving to the hoop for a layup and a foul shot, which proved to be their last field goal of the game.

Facing a 54-41 deficit, St. Joe’s fought their way back within seven, outscoring UMass, 15-7, in the next 5:30 to cut the lead to five with 1:20 left.

Despite not scoring from the field in nearly the final seven minutes, the Minutemen clamped down to secure the win on the defensive end. Harris was pleased with his team’s ability to win without scoring baskets.

“That’s something that our coach stresses all the time,” Harris said. “We showed some signs of that today. We got crucial defensive stops, we got rebounds, and we got to the free throw line, which is big for us.”

Although they weathered the late attack by the Hawks, center Sean Carter still believes they could be more consistent.

“We need to get to the point where we can play the whole game like that,” Carter said.

Kellogg admired the overall grit of his team’s play.

“We’re playing tougher and it’s evident by the ability to win a game when you don’t play great or perfect,” Kellogg said. “Defensively and on the boards is where we’re really making strides.”

Carter’s long stride pulled down 11 rebounds in Sunday’s victory to help his team win a 44-35 advantage on the glass.

“I’m starting to attack the boards more,” Carter said. “I’m being more active, not standing around and it’s helping us a lot.”

Anthony Gurley provided a spark off the UMass bench, contributing 15 points and nine rebounds in 26 minutes.

The Minutemen’s consecutive wins are the first since mid-December. The team will look to string together three wins in a row for the first time this season on tomorrow at George Washington.

Dan Gigliotti can be reached at dgigliot@student.umass.edu.

Leave A Comment