Scrolling Headlines:

Worcester, Student Union renovations among subjects of first SGA Senate session -

September 26, 2017

Three thefts in Fine Arts Center over past week -

September 26, 2017

Talk on women’s resistance to Brazilian military dictatorship held at the Old Chapel -

September 26, 2017

Engstrom and MacLean lead UMass cross country at Battle in Beantown -

September 26, 2017

The anti-Semitism of the Suarez talk is not the way to discuss the Israeli-/Palestinian conflict -

September 26, 2017

No, fascists are not the same as those who oppose them -

September 26, 2017

Political factions oppose each other like passionate sports fans -

September 26, 2017

STEM Ambassador’s Program to expand impact on and off campus -

September 26, 2017

Buzz starting to build for UMass hockey -

September 26, 2017

UMass Tennis starts season strong at Brown Invitational -

September 26, 2017

Foo Fighters’ ‘Concrete and Gold’ misses the mark -

September 26, 2017

Emmy’s 2017 Red Carpet fashion recap: who, what, WEAR -

September 26, 2017

We all scream for vegan ice cream -

September 26, 2017

UMass women’s soccer takes complete control in 3-1 win vs. Davidson -

September 25, 2017

Shaughnessy Naughton speaks on STEM professionals in politics -

September 25, 2017

ESPN author and journalist talks sports and mental health at UMass -

September 25, 2017

UMass men’s soccer remains unbeaten at home -

September 25, 2017

Minutewomen split Pennsylvania trip -

September 25, 2017

Kozlowski’s minutes limited for second straight game in loss versus Fordham -

September 25, 2017

Late penalty-kick goal not enough vs. Rams -

September 25, 2017

UMass men’s basketball makes lineup change, tops La Salle Sunday at Mullins Center

Zach Lewis has the ball on Sunday during the game against La Salle. (Jessica Picard/Daily Collegian)

In the days leading up to Massachusetts men’s basketball game against La Salle, the red team (the reserves) beat the black team (the starters) during different drills in practice. As a result of this, UMass coach Derek Kellogg had a decision to make before the Minutemen’s matchup with La Salle Sunday afternoon.

When starting lineups were announced ahead of the game, everyone in attendance could not have been more surprised with who Kellogg decided to trot out to the court for tip off.

Gone was the usual starting five of Rashaan Holloway, Seth Berger, Donte Clark, Luwane Pipkins and DeJon Jarreau and replacing them were teammates Malik Hines, Brison Gresham, Ty Flowers, Zach Lewis and C.J. Anderson.

The lineup change seemed to do dividends for UMass (14-15, 4-12 Atlantic 10) as they came out with inspired play and topped the Explorers (14-13, 8-8 A-10) 84-71 at Mullins Center.

Coming into the game, a lineup change was on Kellogg’s mind and the play of the usual second unit (the red team) in practice forced him to make an adjustment.

“I mean we’ve talked about it at different times, I never just said we’re doing this,” Kellogg said. “After yesterday, it didn’t make sense to me to not put the team that keeps winning in. They’ve won at practice somewhat consistently so I said I’m going with what I’ve been saying for a while, the team that won in practice is going to start.”

Before Sunday’s matchup, the starting five against La Salle had a combined 14 starts on the season; eight for Gresham, three for Lewis and Anderson as both Hines and Flowers had yet to make starts. Kellogg was excited to give those players a chance in a starting role.

“It doesn’t mean you’re not playing or whatever and give some guys who worked all season a chance,” Kellogg said. “I thought it paid huge dividends for Zach Lewis, he came out on fire and played unbelievable basketball.”

Lewis, in particular, took advantage of the opportunity to start. The redshirt junior scored a career-high 37 points, shot 6-for-9 from 3-point range and a perfect 13-for-13 from the free-throw line. His scoring output was three points shy of the Mullins Center record for points scored in a single game set by Trey Davis last season and four points shy of the program record of 41 points set by Billy Tindall in 1968.

The Canisius transfer has gotten off to hot starts before, but in those games cooled off in the second half. On Sunday, he reversed that trend in a big way with 19 and 18 in the first and second half, respectively.

“It was really about being confident and finishing out the game. I played well for one half last game,” Lewis said. “I played bad in the second half. Really during halftime, I was talking to coaches and they just said keep being aggressive and finish out the game.”

Lewis acknowledged the comfort factor of playing with the so-called “red” team.

“All year those are the five guys that we normally practice with. Our camaraderie is definitely there,” Lewis said. “La Salle has a bunch of high levels of transfers and they have Jordan Price as well, that’s a very good team. For us to be the backup five, to start off against their five, we had an extra chip on our shoulders.”

The bench played a critical role in Sunday’s win as well, most prominently guard DeJon Jarreau, who scored 20 points and was a perfect 4-for-4 from 3-point range.

Jarreau believed the lineup change before the game motivated both units to bring their A-game Sunday and that played a major role in the win.

“It was a good thing that we did that because like he said they do well at practice every day, like every day. It’s a good confidence builder for those guys and us too coming off the bench,” Jarreau said. “It’s like we have to step up more and for them, they have to keep that job. So it’s a good thing that they get the start and we come off the bench and it’s like everybody is coming with that fire.”

Adam Aucoin can be reached at aaucoin@umass.edu and followed on Twitter @aaucoin34.

Leave A Comment