December 21, 2014

Scrolling Headlines:

Minutemen search for answers following blowout loss to Providence -

Saturday, December 20, 2014

UMass dominated in 85-65 loss to Providence -

Saturday, December 20, 2014

BLOG: UMass football recruiting roundup: UMass signs DT, offers two kickers -

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

UMass President Robert Caret resigns to become chancellor of the University of Maryland system -

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Brandon Montour: ‘It felt great to be out there’ -

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

UMass falls to Northeastern in Brandon Montour’s debut -

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Cady Lalanne continues to evolve as a potential outside shooting threat -

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

UMass hockey returns to action against Northeastern, Montour to make season debut -

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Demetrius Dyson remains hopeful despite rocky start to season -

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Former UMass soccer star Matt Keys aims to continue his career professionally -

Monday, December 15, 2014

Pierre-Louis, Dillard shine in UMass victory over Holy Cross -

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Passing, spacing improved in UMass victory -

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Prolific first half propels UMass past Canisius, 75-58 -

Saturday, December 13, 2014

UMass Faculty Senate hears ad hoc committee’s report on FBS football, shoots down contentious motion -

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Minutemen hope improved spacing will aid struggling half court offense -

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Divest UMass urges Board of Trustees to split with fossil fuel industry -

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Cady Lalanne accustomed to dealing with increased attention -

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Front to Back: Week of Dec. 1, 2014 -

Monday, December 8, 2014

Chiarelli: UMass basketball running out of time to find its identity -

Monday, December 8, 2014

Minutewomen take care of business against American -

Monday, December 8, 2014

Raphiael Putney submits strong outing in UMass men’s basketball’s win over La Salle

Maria Uminski/Collegian

PHILADELPHIA – It was the game from Raphiael Putney that Massachusetts men’s basketball coach Derek Kellogg had been waiting for.

Putney, who came into this season with big expectations following a successful sophomore campaign in which he finished second on the team in scoring with 10.1 points per game, has had a surprisingly quiet and inconsistent junior season.

But on Wednesday night, in the Minutemen’s 61-60 victory over La Salle, all of that was forgotten. Putney submitted one of his best performances of the season as he finished with a team-high 17 points on 7-of-11 shooting from the field. He also finished 3-of-5 from 3-point range, hitting his first long ball since Jan. 2 after a 0-for-14 slump.

He said he felt confident, something that has been noticeably absent from his play for long stretches this season, in which he has  averaged just 7.6 points per game and hasn’t found consistency on the offensive end.

“Today was my day,” Putney said. “My teammates looked for me and I just made shots. … I had confidence in myself.”

From the opening tip, Putney looked locked in offensively. He scored the Minutemen’s first four points, faking 3-pointers and driving into the lane with ease to help UMass overcome the slow starts that have plagued it so much in the past at Tom Gola Arena and jump out to an early lead.

But what may have been Putney’s most impressive stat of the night was one that showed up as a zero in the box score. Putney, who has been marred by foul trouble not only this season, but in years past, finished the game with no fouls.

Putney has committed at least four fouls in seven of UMass’ 18 games this season, and has fouled out on three of those occasions. That was not  the case on Wednesday night, as he looked dialed in not only on the offensive end, but kept control defensively and avoided the silly fouls that he has been accustomed to taking.

UMass wins despite Williams

Chaz Williams will get all of the praise for the Minutemen’s big victory on Wednesday night for his game-winning layup with eight seconds left, but what may be lost in the shuffle is that he actually had one of his least impressive performances of the season.

Williams finished with just six points on 3-of-7 shooting – including going 0-for-2 from long range – and failed to get to the free throw line in his 36 minutes.

“Basically, he had nowhere to go,” La Salle coach John Giannini said. “The big guy was out there early and he couldn’t turn the corner … we played great ball screen defense.”

Terrell Vinson also played less-than-stellar in the victory, as he finished with just seven points on 3-of-13 shooting in 35 minutes.

Stephen Hewitt can be reached at shewitt@student.umass.edu and followed on Twitter @steve_hewitt.

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