UMass offense comes to life
By Marty Dobrow, Daily Hampshire Gazette Staff, 1/3/97

AMHERST -- Just after last night's UMass-Davidson game, a Honda Civic-sized blimp advertising a local credit union sputtered around the Mullins Center. It was an appropriate symbol for an evening when fans had spotted a UFO -- an unidentified flying offense.

Indeed, UMass' offensive attack, excruciatingly sluggish for most of the season, came to life in a 77-64 victory over the Wildcats. The Minutemen shot a season-high 54.4 percent from the field. They helped create baskets for each other by dishing out 19 assists, tying for the best total of the year. And perhaps most importantly, the team's top shooter Carmelo Travieso, shook off a brutal shooting slump to connect on 11 of 18 field goals for a game-high 28 points.

"It felt good to see some balls going through the basket," Travieso said. "That's what the game's supposed to be all about."

Despite the offensive outburst, coach Bruiser Flint felt the team's performance was full of holes. Flint, who had been relatively sanguine in the face of a couple recent losses, emerged from a lengthy locker-room session with a rather grim assessment.

"I thought we were horrible," he said. "We got the lead out there, and guys got happy."

UMass did allow the Wildcats back into the game in the second half, almost frittering away an 18-point lead when the margin was cut to 65-58 with 2:47 remaining. Davidson, though, would get no closer.

Davidson, 5-5, is certainly not the caliber of team that UMass will have to beat if it is to prove an NCAA tournament-quality club down the road. The Wildcats are a physically unimposing team that seems to be in search of a wealthy alum to donate a weight room. Still, they have hung in games for a while with the likes of Duke and Wake Forest, and they do have a victory over an 8-2 Mississippi squad to their credit, so this was not a "gimme."

Wildcat coach Bob McKillop felt that the key to the game was UMass' effective screening to free Travieso for good looks at the hoop. "That's a lost art in basketball," he said.

Travieso, coming off a 3-19 outing against UConn, seemed to gather confidence as the game went on. In the second half he was springing up on jumpers and releasing with great quickness. He hit 8 of 10 shots after intermission, including 4-5 from behind the three-point arc.

"If he gets in his rhythm, he's volatile, he's dangerous," said McKillop. "Every time we came back, he stuck a dagger in our heart."

UMass also got some strong inside play from Lari Ketner (13 points, 4 blocks) and Tyrone Weeks (12 points, 7 rebounds). Charlton Clarke played the full 40 minutes at the point, and scored 10 points, while tying his career-high with seven assists.

Landry Kosmalski paced Davidson with 15 points.

The Minutemen, now 5-7, begin league play at 2 p.m. Sunday at home against St. Joseph's.


Davidson Wildcats 64
Massachusetts Minutemen 77
at the Mullins Center

DAVIDSON (64)
                      fg    ft    rb
               min   m-a   m-a   o-t  a pf   tp
Kosmalski       33  5-11  4-11   4-8  0  4   15
Holmes          29   2-9   1-2   1-4  2  2    5
Donnelly        31  5-11   2-2   0-4  1  3   14
Ewodo           31   4-9   4-6   2-5  1  3   12
Ton             31   2-3   0-0   0-0  4  1    5
Armstrong        3   0-1   0-0   0-0  0  0    0
Burns            7   0-0   0-0   0-0  1  0    0
Halbauer        22   3-3   1-1   1-4  2  0    9
Marshall        13   0-4   4-4   1-1  0  3    4
_______________________________________________
TOTALS         200 21-51 16-26  9-26 11 16   64
_______________________________________________
Percentages: FG-.412, FT-.615. 3-Point Goals:
6-14, .429 (Kosmalski 1-2, Holmes 0-2, Donnelly
2-4, Ewodo 0-1, Ton 1-2, Armstrong 0-1, Halbauer
2-2). Team rebounds: 3. Blocked shots: None.
Turnovers: 15 (Ton 4, Holmes 3, Kosmalski 3,
Donnelly 2, Ewodo 2). Steals: 8 (Ewodo 3, Ton 2,
Donnelly, Halbauer, Marshall).


MASSACHUSETTS (77)
                      fg    ft    rb
               min   m-a   m-a   o-t  a pf   tp
Babul           19   0-2   0-0   0-3  3  3    0
Basit           12   2-5   0-0   1-3  0  4    4
Ketner          21   5-7   3-5   2-5  2  4   13
Travieso        40 11-18   2-2   0-2  3  0   28
Clarke          40   3-9   2-2   0-6  7  2   10
Smith           21   1-2   2-4   0-0  3  1    4
Kirkland         7   0-1   0-0   0-0  0  1    0
Weeks           23   6-9   0-0   2-7  0  2   12
Norville        17   3-4   0-0   3-5  1  2    6
_______________________________________________
TOTALS         200 31-57  9-13  8-31 19 19   77
_______________________________________________
Percentages: FG-.544, FT-.692. 3-Point Goals:
6-14, .429 (Travieso 4-8, Clarke 2-5, Weeks 0-1).
Team rebounds: 2. Blocked shots: 8 (Ketner 4,
Basit, Babul, Travieso, Smith). Turnovers: 14
(Clarke 4, Ketner 3, Travieso 2, Weeks 2, Babul,
Basit, Norville). Steals: 7 (Babul 2, Clarke 2,
Travieso 2, Weeks).

__________________________________
Davidson           28   36  -   64
Massachusetts      39   38  -   77
__________________________________
Technical fouls: None.  A: 9,493. Officials:
Felton Steed, Jim Haney, Brian Kersey.

Back to the home page

Click Here to Visit Our Sponsor