Coverage from:
The Massachusetts Daily Collegian
The Daily Hampshire Gazette

FSU Bulldogs take bite out of Minutemen at home
By Casey Kane, The Massachusetts Daily Collegian Staff, 12/11/96

The towel never came out from under the bench.

Fresno State men's basketball coach Jerry Tarkanian, who is famous for his crucial-moment towel chomping, never moved for the towel and looked completely relaxed as his Bulldogs ran away with a win over the Massachusetts Minutemen 102-81.

"We played like shit," UMass coach James "Bruiser" Flint said. "What I want to say I can't really say because you might print it. Guys didn't come to play, guys aren't focused." Fresno State was sparked by Fall River native Chris Herren, who scored a game-high 25 points in front of his family and friends.

"I'm just happy to be home, happy to have a great game and happy that we won," Herren said. Herren ran roughshod over the Minuteman defense, dishing out five assists and coming away with three steals on the night.

UMass had its only lead in the game when Ajmal Basit made a lay-up 2:25 into the game to put the Minutemen (2-4) up 6-4. Fresno State (6-1) responded with an 11-point run that started with a Dominick Young 3-pointer.

UMass closed the gap to three, 18-21, with 12:28 remaining in the first half when a Tyrone Weeks jumper. Weeks, who did not play against Georgetown and Wyoming because of a sprained ankle, saw only 10 minutes of action, all in the first half.

Video clip: Edgar Padilla feeds Ajmal Basit for 2.
595k AVI
Courtesey: ESPN
"He gave me all he could, he told me at halftime that he was really hurting," Flint said. Basit drained a bucket with 8:35 left in the first half to chip away at the Fresno State lead. He followed with four consecutive free throws off a pair of Rashaan Smith fouls to put UMass within one at 30-29.

After a television timeout broke the Minuteman momentum, the Bulldogs went on a tear, ripping off 22 points to UMass' 13 to close the half.

The second half produced more of the same for the Bulldogs, who saw their lead increased to as high as 15 five separate times in the second half alone, before running away in the closing seconds of the game.

UMass was able to cut the Fresno State advantage to nine points three times, all three times keyed by the play of the guards.

"We had opportunities to get back in the game," Flint said. "We were down seven, nine, three and all we needed to do was make a good stop or come up with a good play or maybe get to the line. But we're not doing that."

Fresno State capped the game with six unanswered points to record a Mullins Center record for points scored by an opponent with 102. The previous high had been George Washington's 86 points in last year's 86-76 loss.

"If we're going to take L's at least we're going to give an honest effort every night," Flint said. "If a guy's not ready to play, he doesn't deserve to be out there. That's the bottom line."

Ketner and Basit proved to be bright spots on the evening for the Minutemen, as they led the team with 18 and 16 points respectively. Ketner pulled down 12 rebounds, while Basit and Inus Norville had six apiece.

Three other Minutemen were in double figures. Edgar Padilla finished with 10 points and five assists, Carmelo Travieso had 13 points and three assists and Charlton Clarke came away with 12 points and four rebounds.

The Minutemen play again tomorrow night when they host Drexel at 7 p.m.

Herren leads Fresno State win
By Marty Dobrow, Daily Hampshire Gazette Staff, 12/11/96

AMHERST -- Everyone knew it was going to tough. No one knew it was going to be this tough.

The University of Massachusetts Minutemen continued to sputter in the post-Calipari/Camby era last night, dropping a dispiriting 102-81 decision to Fresno State. By game's end, a dejected head coach Bruiser Flint found himself questioning the effort of his players.

"I'm going to find out who wants to play," Flint said. "If we're going to lose, we're going to lose with guys who will play hard. It was almost embarrassing out there at times."

The loss dropped UMass to 2-4 on the year. It marked only the third time the Minutemen had ever lost in the Mullins Center, a building they moved into more than three years ago. It was also the first time in 185 games that the Minutemen had surrendered over 100 points, dating back to a 103-96 overtime loss to Rutgers in February of 1991.

Fresno State, 6-1, was led by Chris Herren, who had a triumphant homecoming to the Bay State. The former superstar at Durfee High in Fall River scored 25 points and played a brilliant floor game. He was greeted by a smattering of boos from the Mullins crowd, a consequence of the trouble he ran into with a self-destructive flameout from Boston College two years ago.

"It's better to hear the boos than not to play the game," said Herren, who missed almost two full years of action (breaking his wrist in his first game at BC and sitting out last year as a transfer).

"I was really happy for Chris," said Fresno State coach Jerry Tarkanian. "This was huge for him."

UMass got 18 points and 12 rebounds from a surging Lari Ketner, and 16 points from Ajmal Basit. Those were really the only bright spots.

"You can't rely on a couple of first-year players to carry you," said Flint.

The UMass coach's irritation with some of his veterans has become visible. In the closing minutes he left Edgar Padilla (10 points on 3 of 10 shooting) and Carmelo Travieso (13 on 4 of 18) on the bench with the game not completely out of hand.

UMass did rebound exceptionally well (32 offensive boards), but continued to shoot poorly (33.7 percent). Most frustrating for Flint was the sporadic effort on the defensive end.

"I told my team, `Who do you want me to be?' Flint said. "`Do you want me to be an (expletive deleted), or do you want me to be a guy who just coaches? Sometimes (expletive deleted) get what they want. Maybe I have to go back to being an (expletive deleted)."

Players seemed at a loss to explain the UMass malaise.

"We're not getting off to good starts," said Ketner. "Coach talks about it all the time. It's happening in practice, and now it's carrying over to the game."

"We're working hard," said Travieso. "The games are just not going our way. Last year it seemed like we had a lot of energy. It's hard to find answers."

UMass will have to search in a hurry. The Minutemen play again on Thursday night at home against Drexel.

Fresno State Bulldogs (#16) 102
Massachusetts Minutemen 81
at the Mullins Center

                      fg    ft    rb
               min   m-a   m-a   o-t  a pf   tp
Forney          29  4-10   1-4   2-3  2  2    9
Roberson        26  5-12   2-2  4-10  2  0   14
Smith           22   4-7   1-2   2-4  0  5    9
Young           32  3-12   4-4   1-5  5  5   13
Herren          33  9-14   4-5   0-2  5  1   25
Terdenge        11   1-1   4-4   2-6  1  0    6
Rines            1   0-0   0-0   0-0  1  0    0
Meyers           1   1-1   0-0   0-0  0  0    2
Stanley         16   1-4   6-6   3-7  0  5    8
Mcculloch       15   3-4   3-4   1-4  1  3    9
Brooks          14   2-6   2-2   1-1  0  3    7
TOTALS         200 33-71 27-33 16-42 17 24  102
Percentages: FG-.465, FT-.818. 3-Point Goals:
9-21, .429 (Roberson 2-2, Young 3-10, Herren 3-5,
Brooks 1-4). Team rebounds: 7. Blocked shots: 7
(Smith 3, Forney 2, Stanley, Mcculloch).
Turnovers: 13 (Herren 4, Brooks 3, Young 2,
Forney, Mcculloch, Roberson, Smith). Steals: 8
(Herren 3, Mcculloch, Roberson, Smith, Terdenge,

                      fg    ft    rb
               min   m-a   m-a   o-t  a pf   tp
Babul           16   2-4   0-0   4-5  0  3    4
Basit           18   6-9   4-5   5-6  0  5   16
Ketner          28  7-15   4-6  6-12  0  2   18
Padilla         27  3-10   4-4   0-3  5  4   10
Travieso        33  4-18   3-3   1-1  3  1   13
Clarke          30  4-14   4-7   2-4  3  2   12
Burns            1   0-1   0-0   0-0  0  0    0
Maclay           1   0-1   0-0   0-0  0  0    0
Smith           14   1-3   1-1   3-4  0  3    3
Kirkland        14   1-4   1-2   2-2  1  1    3
Weeks           10   1-6   0-0   4-6  1  1    2
Norville         8   0-1   0-0   1-1  0  0    0
TOTALS         200 29-86 21-28 28-44 13 22   81
Percentages: FG-.337, FT-.750. 3-Point Goals:
2-15, .133 (Padilla 0-2, Travieso 2-11, Clarke
0-1, Burns 0-1). Team rebounds: 11. Blocked
shots: 6 (Ketner 3, Basit, Babul, Kirkland).
Turnovers: 14 (Padilla 4, Ketner 3, Basit 2,
Travieso 2, Weeks 2, Smith). Steals: 5 (Ketner 2,
Padilla 2, Basit).
Fresno St          52   50  -  102
Massachusetts      42   39  -   81
Technical fouls: None.  A: 9,493. Officials: Mike
Kitts, Jerry Donaghy, John Moreau.

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