December 20, 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

Minutewomen run over by Richmond for 8th straight loss

Taylor C. Snow/Collegian

Despite freshman Jasmine Harris’ career-high 19 points, the Massachusetts women’s basketball team had its losing skid extended to eight games, as it fell 81-63 at Richmond on Sunday afternoon.

UMass (3-21, 1-8 Atlantic 10) nearly dug itself out of an 11-0 hole to start the game, but the Spiders (13-13, 3-7 A-10) regained control and put the Minutewomen away in the second half.

Running a new motion-based offense, the underclassmen stole the show for UMass, and 47 points came off the bench.

UMass coach Sharon Dawley attributed the success of the new offense to the fight of her younger players.

“We’re encouraged by the play of the freshman class,” Dawley said. “I thought they did a really good job. They put together a new press, it’s kind of like the freshman press, and I think that helped get us back within striking distance.”

The Minutewomen trailed 11-0 to start the game and committed seven turnovers within the first six minutes of play, but an offensive turnaround sparked by Harris and freshman guard Adriana Jordan helped the cut the deficit to 22-18 halfway through the first frame.

Harris, who believes she put out her best performance to date, said her inspiration was simply to help her team in any way she could.

“When we came out (down) 11-0, the whole team was working hard to fight back and I was working hard with my teammates,” Harris said. “I think we were all just more aggressive looking to the basket, looking to score. We’re a team of fighters.”

While Harris and Jordan led UMass in scoring before halftime, junior guards Becca Wann and Kristina King led Richmond, combining for 18 points in the first half.

King finished with 17 points to lead the Spiders, along with redshirt senior guard Rachael Bilney’s 16.

The Minutewomen failed to climb back from a 14-point hole at the start of the second half, as Richmond’s lead reached 22 with less than five minutes to go.

While unhappy with the outcome, Dawley cited clutch freshman play as a bright spot that she expects to continue this season.

“It’s encouraging seeing that (output),” Dawley said. “Moving forward, we’ll just keep playing the young guys and expect the veterans to fight for their minutes back and make some shots in order to get their minutes back.”

 Dawley believes the chemistry between the younger players is because of a common playing philosophy, focused on motion.

Compared with veteran players who work better from set pieces, Dawley said her squad’s strategy depends on the group that is in play.

“It’s almost a tale of two teams,” Dawley said. “I don’t know if it’s better, but it suits certain kids more.”

Rhode Island, Charlotte up next

UMass finishes its road trip against Rhode Island on Tuesday afternoon, then returns home to Amherst for a tilt against Charlotte on Wednesday night.

But faced with an eight-game losing streak, Dawley is ready to change things up.

She said the next few games will be taken on with a tournament mindset.

The Rams (5-19, 0-9 A-10) are currently on a 13-game losing streak of their own, are led by freshman guard Tayra Melendez, who leads the team with 11 points per game.

Tuesday’s tip-off is set for 2 p.m. in Kingston, R.I.

 Peter Cappiello can be reached at pcappiel@student.umass.edu and followed on Twitter @MDC_Cappiello.

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