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Play by Play
MHERST - New University of Massachusetts coach Travis Ford promised that one of the hallmarks of his teams will be how well prepared they are.
But in his first game leading the Minutemen, both Ford and Hartford coach Larry Harrison will have to use some imagination and guesswork to prepare for each other in tonight's season opener at 7 in the Mullins Center.
Harrison has been watching tape of UMass from last year to view the Minuteman players and of Eastern Kentucky University to learn about Ford's system. Ford was hired by UMass in March after coaching at Eastern Kentucky for five years.
'We try to look at Eastern Kentucky and the way they played and the patterns they ran and try to picture UMass players in those positions,' Harrison said.
The addition of Kenny Adeleke changes Hartford considerably. The 6-foot-9 center transferred to the Hawks after three seasons at Hofstra, where he scored over 1,200 points. Ford has had to dust off two-year-old film of the Pride to view Adeleke and then try to figure out how he'll be used.
Travis Ford works with the Minutemen in a recent practice.
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The Minutemen will utilize the same starting five from the Dowling exhibition game Nov. 10 with Rashaun Freeman and Stephane Lasme up front, Maurice Maxwell at point guard and Artie Bowers and Brandon Thomas on the wings.
Thomas is one of four new players who will make their UMass debuts tonight. Guards James Life and Chris Lowe will likely play regular minutes off the bench, while junior walk-on forward Matt Pennie will dress for the first time in a game as well.
The Hawks have seven players who weren't part of last year's 8-20 season. Ford expects to face a much improved team.
'I predict Hartford to win the America East,' Ford said. 'I'm not saying that because we're playing them. I'm saying it because of facts. You look at what they have returning, then you add the best player in the league to your team. That spells success ... They have a lot of players who could play on our team.'
Harrison thinks his team will be better too, largely because of Adeleke.
'In practice, he's raised the level of intensity, because he plays so hard. He's so big and powerful. He's not a finesse guy,' Harrison said. 'He has the size and the talent to play at any level of college basketball right now. How effective he'll be will depend on how high he raises his level of play.'
Adeleke opens things up for Aaron Cook too. The senior guard averaged 14.9 points per game last year even though most opposing defenses focused their energies on stopping him.
'Last year he was pretty much a one-man gang with defenses designed to stop him and not let him get any looks,' Harrison said. 'With Kenny out there, at some point he's going to draw some double teams, so teams can't concentrate just on Cook.'
Ford said he is looking forward to getting started.
'From what I've seen on tape, they play just like we do. They're playing faster offensively than we do,' Ford said. 'It should be an exciting game.'
Matt Vautour can be reached at email@example.com. For more UMass coverage including a frequently updated UMass sports blog, go to www.dailyhampshiregazette.com/umsports.
here have been multiple beginnings to the Travis Ford era as the Massachusetts men's basketball coach since he took the job eight months ago.
There was the introductory press conference on March 25 that officially began his tenure at UMass.
Then there was Midnight Madness on Oct.14, which gave fans their first chance to see Ford and the 2005-06 Minutemen.
And then there was last Thursday night's exhibition game against Dowling, a 96-55 win, which served as the first time Ford paced the sidelines of the Mullins Center.
But even as he passed all of these checkpoints, there has always only been one date that truly signified the beginning of the Travis Ford era. And that date has finally arrived, as UMass opens its highly-anticipated season tonight against Hartford at 7 p.m. at the Mullins Center.
"We're excited about it," Ford said. "We know we've got a great challenge ahead of us with Hartford, but we're excited about getting out on the court, playing in front of the fans and trying to put some of the things we've learned into use."
Friday will be the season opener for the Hawks, as well, and Ford expects to see a team much better than the one that went 8-20 last year.
"We are playing against, what I think, will be the biggest turnaround in Division I basketball this year, as far as wins and losses," Ford said. "I predict they'll win the America East. This is a very dangerous basketball team, so we've got our hands full."
Hartford returns its entire starting lineup, as well as the top five scorers, from a year ago. Leading the Hawks' attack is senior guard Aaron Cook, who led the team in scoring with 14.9 points per game last season.
The biggest change for Hartford this year is the addition of senior center Kenny Adeleke. Adeleke transferred to Hartford after playing three seasons at Hofstra, where he amassed over 1,000 points and 800 rebounds.
"From all indications from the scouts I've talked to, he is an NBA basketball player," Ford said. "He's a proven basketball player in what was a strong Colonial League at Hofstra. He's 6-foot-9 and left-handed; he's very similar to [UMass junior] Rashaun Freeman in his game, so he's a force."
Ford plans on rotating his post players on Adeleke, with junior Stephane Lasme, the team's top low-post defender, matching-up with him to start the game.
Obviously, the Minutemen will be consumed with containing Adeleke's offensive output, but they will also have to keep him off the boards, as they struggled on the glass in the game against Dowling.
"Hopefully our rebounding will improve drastically," Ford said. "We've got to be able to rebound the basketball in order to win games. Rebounding the basketball will be a big key against Hartford."
While Ford knows it will take some time for the team to master his system, he is excited the games that count have finally arrived.
"Are we ready to play? I don't know if we're actually ready to play, but we're anxious to play," Ford said. "We still have a lot of improvement to go because this is a work in progress. The guys are still learning the system, but I have confidence we'll play hard and run our system."
MHERST, Mass. - The Travis Ford Era got off to a great start with a hard-fought 67-62 win over Hartford on Friday night at the Mullins Center. The Minutemen were led by Rashaun Freeman, who scored a game-high 25 points and Stephane Lasme who blocked a key shot with 28 seconds remaining to secure the victory. Senior Jeff Viggiano added 14 points for his highest scoring game in two seasons.
The crowd of 6,488 was the largest for a UMass home opener since the 1997-98 opener when 7,356 came out for the College of Charleston game on Dec. 2, 1997.
The Minutemen were able to retain possession of the ball after Lasme's block, whicIt's show time for Ford's Minutemen, Season opener tonight at home h forced Hartford to intentionally foul to try and stay in the game. UMass was able to hit their foul shots in the remaining seconds to fend off Hartford's last attempts to take the game.
The Minutemen looked like they were going to run away with the victory after a Maurice Maxwell basket gave UMass their largest lead of the game of 10 points with 2:27 remaining. However, the Hawks battled back and cut the lead in half quickly, and closed to within three with 1:20 remaining to make it 62-59.
UMass and Hartford traded the lead back and forth for much of the second half until the Minuteman finally took the lead for good in the last minutes of the game. Freeman, Viggiano, and freshman Chris Lowe came up big, hitting the key shots that put the Minutemen ahead.
Freeman scored in double-figures for the 47th time in his career. He was also strong on defense, leading the team in steals with three.
Viggiano had his best-scoring game in two seasons as he netted 14 points. He was followed in scoring by Lowe who had a strong collegiate debut with 8 points, and James Life who also scored 8 in his first game with the Minutemen. Life and Viggiano were huge outside the arc, each hitting two treys at timely moments in the game.
Stephane Lasme had three blocks in the first 3:31 and finished with four. He now has 127 in his career and is seventh all-time at UMass trailing Will Herndon (128). The fourth came with 26 seconds left in the game.
Lasme also made his first two free throws of the game before missing one in the final seconds. He had made 16 free throws in a row at the Mullins Center. He tied the school record for most free throws made in a game without a miss in last season's home finale against Duquesne (3/5/05).
Hartford held the lead after the first half. It looked like the Minutemen were going to take the lead into the locker room after Chris Lowe wowed the crowd fighting for the ball and getting it to Freeman, who was fouled and hit both shots, but Aaron Cook hit a big 3-pointer with just seconds remaining in the half. Kenny Adeleke ended Hartford's 5:51 scoreless streak with 3:00 left.
The Minutemen, who were having difficulty scoring, finally got a spark when Rashaun Freeman ended their 4:06 scoring drought with two free throws with 5:40 remaining. Freeman scored again, and then Jeff Viggiano and James Life hit back to back three pointers to put the Minutemen ahead 22-20 with 3:48 left. That wrapped up a 10-0 run.
Brandon Thomas scored the first points of the season 1:04 into the game, but the Minuteman struggled from the field, allowing Hartford to gain a lead as large as eight.
Travis Ford is now 5-1 in his last six season openers as he went 4-1 in openers at Eastern Kentucky including a win at A-10 foe Dayton last season.
The Minutemen will try to carry the momentum of their opening victory to Davidson, where they play Tuesday night, November 22nd.
MHERST, Mass. - Largest Crowd For A Home Opener Since 1997-98
The Travis Ford Era got off to a great start with a hard-fought 67-62 win over Hartford on Friday night at the Mullins Center. Rashaun Freeman scored a game-high 25 points for his 13th career game with 20 or more points and seventh career game with more than 25 points. Senior Jeff Viggiano had his best-scoring game in two seasons as he netted 14 points. Stephane Lasme's fourth block of the game helped to secure the win.
* Ford is now 5-1 in his last six season openers as he went 4-1 in openers at Eastern Kentucky including a win at A-10 foe Dayton last season.
* Ford is the fifth UMass coach to win his Minuteman debut.
* UMass is 64-33 all-time in season openers having won 11 of the last 13. They are 7-0 at the Mullins Center in season openers.
* The crowd of 6,488 was the largest for a UMass home opener since the 1997-98 opener when 7,356 came out for the College of Charleston game on Dec. 2, 1997.
* Freeman scored in double-figures for the 47th time in his career with 25 points. He did it 22 times last season.
* Jeff Viggiano had 14 points his highest total since March 3, 2004, when he netted 23. It was his 27th career double-figure scoring game.
* UMass took its largest lead of the game at 10 points, 62-52, when Maurice Maxwell canned a three-pointer for his first basket of the game with 2:27 left in the game.
* UMass went on a 10-0 late in the first half keeping Hartford scoreless from 8:51 through until 3:00 ... UMass went from trailing 20-12 to leading 22-20 as James Life's three-pointer with 3:48 left in the half. Hartford ended the drought with 3:00 left as Kenny Adeleke dunked home basket to tie the game at 22-22.
* Stephane Lasme had three blocks in the first 3:31 and finished with four. He now has 127 in his career and is seventh all-time at UMass trailing Will Herndon (128). The fourth came with 26 seconds left in the game.
* Lasme made his first two free throws of the game before missing one in the final seconds. He had made 16 free throws in a row at the Mullins Center. He tied the school record for most free throws made in a game without a miss in last season's home finale against Duquesne (3/5/05).
* UMass now leads the series 3-2 with Hartford winning for the first time in the series since 1993.
Notes: UMass won the tap ... Brandon Thomas scored the first points of the season 1:04 into the game ... Jeff Viggiano was the first man off the bench coming in at ... UMass had a scoreless run of 4:06 midway through the first half spanning a Jeff Viggiano basket at 10:46 to a pair of Rashaun Freeman free throws at 5:40 ...
"We came out very tense and I thought I was one of the leading candidates for being the most tense. There was a lot more pressure on us than there was on them. It was out home opener, my first game here, and I think our players felt that, `Hey we've got to win this basketball game.' They came out in a zone, which wasn't the greatest thing for us out very much because we didn't have a chance to come out, run our offense, and get loose. It was a great game plan by them.
"Defense is one thing we've hung our hat on and that's one thing that, I thought, we finally did. Offensively, we were never there tonight. Rashaun scored a couple points, but I didn't think that he played that well offensively. He played well in spurts. We didn't execute well or shoot well. On defense, we dug down and finally started playing defense and that was the difference in the game." Chris Lowe on his first collegiate game: "It felt real good. Coach just told me to play my game and come out there, play defense, and everything else would fall into place. I went out there and sparked the team on defense, went on a little run, and got back in the game. I didn't expect to play 25 minutes. I just expected to help the team win. If it was two minutes or 25 minutes, it doesn't matter; so long as I help the team win."
Jeff Viggiano on the positives coming out of the game: "I think just being in a close game. In both of our scrimmages, even against Seton Hall, the games really weren't even close. With all the new guys we have, playing a close game in an intense situation is going to help us out down the road."
Jeff Viggiano on the Minutemen's slow start: "I hope it was just nervousness, or jitters, or something. We just grinded it out, kept playing hard, and those things happen. You get wins when you're playing hard, even when your shots aren't falling, or things aren't going your way."
Rashaun Freeman on his strong second half: "I was a little too amped up (in the first half) and missed some shots I usually make easily. At half time, I wasn't mad but, anxious to get back out there and get back to work."
Hartford Head Coach Larry Harrison:
"This was a tough loss. I am really concerned about our guard play. We have two young guards, Chris Cole, a freshman, and Rich Baker, a redshirt sophomore. Even though we played well, we didn't run the offense we needed to run at the crucial times."
Coach Larry Harrison on team's second half play:
"We took care of the ball better in the second half. We didn't execute at the crucial times to win the game."
Center Kenny Adeleke on his first game played in over one year:
"I'm excited to be back out on the court. It was the first time in ten years that I sat out a full season. We let one get away, but have others to play. We have to focus on the games coming up and try to get W's."
MHERST - There was plenty to work on and plenty to like for the University of Massachusetts as it overcame a slow start and a few anxious moments late to hold off Hartford 67-62 Friday in Travis Ford's Minuteman coaching debut.
Ford admitted he was a little anxious.
'I just wanted to do so well,' said Ford, who was hired in March after UMass dismissed Steve Lappas. 'I wanted our guys to play well and perform for our fans because there had been a lot of excitement going to this game. We wanted to play extremely well and I think we overcompensated for that, especially in the first 10 minutes.'
The players noticed.
'You could tell he had some bugs in his stomach,' junior big man Rashaun Freeman said.
Everybody had some bugs in their stomachs late. A 3-pointer by Maurice Maxwell put UMass ahead 62-52 with two minutes, 27 left, but the Hawks ran off seven straight points to make it 62-59 with 46 seconds to go. After Stephane Lasme made one of two free throws to make it 63-59, Hartford went right to Kenny Adeleke on the left baseline, but Lasme rejected his layup attempt. UMass made enough free throws down the stretch to hold on.
Rashaun Freeman shoots over Hartford's Kenny Adeleke.
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Adeleke lived up to his billing for Hartford. The Hofstra transfer had 20 points and 10 rebounds to lead the Hawks. Aaron Cook added 15.
Helped by a strong student turnout, the Minutemen drew 6,488 fans to the game.
The Minutemen (1-0) return to action Tuesday, when they travel to Davidson (0-0) for a 7 p.m. game. Hartford (0-1) hosts Brown on Wednesday.
'Winning a close game at home, we needed that,' Viggiano said. 'Playing together like that in a close situation is going to help us out down the road.'
'We're going to have some games where we play really well and take care of business and some games where we grind it out,' Freeman said. 'This was one of the ones we grinded.'
The Minutemen struggled offensively against Hartford's zone in the first half, shooting just 8-for-25 while missing several shots from close range. Viggiano was the lone player clicking on offense with nine first-half points. At one point UMass went 5:09 without a basket and fell behind 20-12. But four straight points by Freeman started a 10-0 run that brought the team and the crowd into it.
Lowe and James Life capped that spurt with a nifty exchange. Lowe stripped Hartford guard Chris Cole and took off on the break. He crossed over to shake one defender and sliced into the lane. As the Hawks collapsed on him, he snapped a pass to Life trailing the play. Life buried the three to put the Minutemen ahead 22-20 with 3:50 left until intermission.
'That got me going,' Lowe said. 'Coach told me to penetrate and kick. I knew where James Life was and I found him.'
The teams went back and forth for the rest of the half. Freeman's two free throws put the Minutemen up 29-28 with 13.7 seconds left, but Aaron Cook's 25-foot banked 3-pointer gave the Hawks a 31-29 advantage at the break.
Ford said it's good to put the first one behind him.
'I'm glad it's over. We survived,' Ford said. 'I told my team we beat a good basketball team tonight. I'm glad to get a win.'
Matt Vautour can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
MHERST - University of Massachusetts coach Travis Ford said he wanted Chris Lowe to earn his playing time. In his Minuteman debut, the freshman point guard did just that.
Lowe's impressive effort helped UMass overcome a slow start and hold off Hartford 67-62. He finished with eight points, five rebounds and four assists.
''It felt real good. Coach told me to play my game and play defense,'' Lowe said. ''I came in, sparked the team on defense and helped us get back in the game.''
Junior Maurice Maurice Maxwell started at point guard after playing on the wing his first two seasons, but the offense stalled early. Whether Maxwell or teamwide opening-night game jitters was to blame for that is questionable, but Lowe sparked the team when he entered.
''I think everybody fed off Chris' energy,'' Ford said. ''He played well. I told him not to let his head get too big. Tomorrow is another day and he has a lot of stripes to earn. But he played well. We haven't given him anything from day one. We've been tough on him and really tried to make him earn it, because he's going to play a lot of minutes. He's a freshman. He's going to be up and down. But he played well tonight.''
Lowe had a few freshman moments, including a late turnover that helped the Hawks climb back in, but he shook it off and for the most part had a veteran's poise down the stretch.
''He was huge,'' said senior Jeff Viggiano. ''If this was your first time watching the team you wouldn't know he was a freshman. He carried us with his energy. We needed it. It pushed us through.''
Lowe made a tough leaner late in the shot clock in the Minutemen's 11-2 run late and knocked down two free throws to clinch it. Lowe showed a quickness not seen in a Minuteman guard in quite some time.
NEWCOMERS - Brandon Thomas scored the first points of the season with a layup one minute, six seconds into the game, but didn't score again. James Life had eight points on 2-for-9 shooting in his debut.
OPENERS - Ford's win made him the fifth straight Minuteman coach to win his debut following Steve Lappas, Bruiser Flint, John Calipari and Ron Gerlufson. Ford is now 5-1 in openers as the coach of an NCAA team.
QUARTER-CENTURY CLUB - Junior big man Rashaun Freeman scored 25 points for the seventh time in his UMass career. It was the 13th game with 20 or more. He didn't have a rebound until midway through the second half, but he finished with six.
VIGGIANO vs. HOME STATE - Viggiano, a native of Suffield, Conn., has had some of the best games of his career against teams from his home state including last year's 12 point, five rebound effort in the Minutemen's 61-59 upset of UConn. He had 14 points and six boards Friday, his best game since his sophomore season. It kept the Minutemen afloat during a tough stretch early.
''I was just trying to come with some energy,'' Viggiano said. ''I tried to take it upon myself to do something just to get us going. That's kind of my role.''
He too noticed his success against Nutmeg State squads. ''We should schedule more Connecticut teams,'' Viggiano joked afterward.
Ford praised the senior's overall play.
''He doesn't always make those shots and he might not always score as many points as he did tonight, but he always works hard,'' Ford said. ''He's somebody that does the right things on and off the court all the time.''
NEXT UP - The Minutemen will play their first road game of the season Tuesday at Davidson. The Wildcats face No. 1 Duke on Saturday.
MISCELLANEOUS - The 6,488 was the largest for a home opener since 7,356 saw the Minutemen host the College of Charleston on Dec. 2, 1997.
Junior big man Stephane Lasme fouled out for the ninth time in his career.
Matt Vautour can be reached at email@example.com.
MHERST -- The lights were dimmed, and the electric guitar chords vibrated through the Mullins Center. As longtime University of Massachusetts public address announcer Jack O'Neill put on his best ''Let's get ready to rumble" voice, you'd think there was some epic confrontation looming: King Kong vs. Godzilla, Varitek vs. A-Rod, or Ali-Frazier IV. Instead, he was merely introducing the UMass starters for last night's season opener against the University of Hartford, a team that finished 8-20 a year ago.
Still, the UMass players were revved up. They chest-bumped the mascot, Sam the Minuteman, who, in truth, has more celebrity cachet on campus than they do. (In recent months, he has been featured in an ESPN commercial, and an interview on Playboy's website.)
Then they gathered on the court as new coach Travis Ford stood alone, staring at a clipboard, waiting for the lights to come back on. As the new era begins, that is his exact challenge: to restore the bright glow.
So far, so good.
UMass showed progress -- as well as a need for substantial improvement -- with a gritty, 67-62 win over the Hawks before 6,488. The Minutemen were pushed to the limit, and didn't clinch the contest until freshman Chris Lowe hit two free throws with 3.1 seconds left for the final margin.
Rashaun Freeman saved UMass from a disastrous debut with a 25-point effort. Senior Jeff Viggiano came off the bench to spark the Minutemen with 14 points, 6 rebounds, and 4 blocked shots.
''Well, I'm glad it's over," said Ford. ''We survived . . . I wanted to do so well. We wanted to perform for our fans."
The starting point guard for Rick Pitino's Kentucky teams in the early '90s, Ford approached this season divided about which constitutes the deeper virtue, patience or impatience.
On one hand, he tried to tamp down expectations. He pointed out that his team has only one senior (Viggiano), and only nine scholarship players this semester (a 10th, University of Pittsburgh transfer Dante Milligan, will become eligible Dec. 23). He talked about the flux at point guard, where junior Maurice Maxwell has shifted from his natural wing position until Lowe is ready. Above all, he said, his players were facing a ''double whammy" of transitions. Not only were they learning new plays and new sets, but, he insisted, they had to adapt to a ''brand new style of basketball." That entails an uptempo offense, and a defense with plenty of pressing and denials. It's what he likes to call ''94 feet for 40 minutes."
So many adjustments, he cautioned, will take some getting used to. ''I remind myself every day that this is totally new to these guys," he said. ''It's not going to happen overnight."
At the same time, there is no question Ford hears the clock ticking. He knows results are expected. This is a team that went 16-12 last season, and a team with four returning starters. Some slack might be cut -- but not much.
''I understand what I want done," he said. ''It's easy for me to get impatient . . . I know what the fans expect."
Those expectations were built during the reign of John Calipari, under whom the Minutemen rose from obscurity to both prominence and controversy in the early-mid '90s. In 1992, the Minutemen got to the NCAA Tournament for the first time in 30 years, winning 30 games and making it to the Sweet 16 before falling to Pitino's Kentucky team, a game marked by Calipari's infamous ''out of the coaching box" technical foul. Ford, who played 12 minutes for Kentucky in that contest, recalls it for another reason. ''What I remember most," he insisted, ''is the frenzy around the UMass basketball program."
The next year, the Mullins Center opened, and routinely played to capacity crowds of 9,493 as the Minutemen continued to spring up the national ladder. But after the Final Four loss to Pitino and Kentucky in 1996 -- and the subsequent fallout from Marcus Camby's agent scandal and Calipari's immediate departure to the NBA -- the Minutemen got ready to tumble.
In the nine seasons since, UMass is two games under .500. The Minutemen have not won a postseason game in that time, and have not played in one since the National Invitation Tournament in 2000. Crowds have disappeared from Mullins. There hasn't been a sellout since Feb. 17, 2001 (a 32-point shredding by Temple). In the last 50 home games prior to last night, a span of three-plus seasons, only seven reached half of the Mullins capacity.
Steve Lappas, who coached the team for the past four years, was well liked by his players but did not connect well with the fan base. Even last year's mini-resurgence, with the best record in seven years, did little to excite the masses. At season's end, he was fired.
Ford arrived fresh off a 22-9 record at Eastern Kentucky, the best year in the program's history. More than 1,000 people turned out to an opening press conference/pep rally March 25, and the fresh-faced coach with the bluegrass twang didn't shy from big expectations. He talked that day about how he would ''establish a program that is second to none," how the Minutemen ''will be the hardest-working players in America," and how the Mullins Center was ''going to be the hottest ticket in the East."
In the weeks and months that followed, that bold rhetoric became more tempered, but his ambition didn't cool. He set about connecting with the fan base. He kept up a torrid pace of speaking to Elks and Rotarians and school groups. He schmoozed with alums at golf tournaments. One day, he threw out the first pitch at Fenway Park. He began to get comfortable with the area, and insists it only took him one take to correctly pronounce ''Chicopee" and ''Agawam" in a radio ad for a rental car agency.
With his players, he began asserting his will right away.
''The biggest adjustment is the intensity level we're expected to have every day," said Viggiano. ''If you're not doing something as hard as he thinks you can be doing it, you'll be on the sideline."
''He doesn't let anything fly by, any mistake," added junior center Freeman, a first-team All-Atlantic 10 player a year ago. ''He keeps us on our toes as far as not being satisfied with where we're at."
Last night almost was far from satisfying as the Hawks proved a much-improved bunch from the team that finished last in the America East Conference a year ago, going 0-13 on the road. The addition of transfer center Kenny Adeleke (20 points and a game-high 10 rebounds) gave Hartford an immediate jolt.
UMass was sluggish at the start, and trailed at the break, 31-29. The second half went back and forth with the Minutemen taking the lead for good on a Viggiano basket with 6:13 left. They extended the lead to as many as 10, sparked in part by Lowe (8 points, 4 assists), and then withstood a late charge by the Hawks.
''We came out very tense," said Ford with a smile. ''And I thought I was the leading candidate for being the most tense."
MHERST - After an offseason full of changes, the Travis Ford coaching era began last night at the Mullins Center, where the ultimate result was success for UMass men’s basketball.
Rashaun Freeman scored a game-high 25 points as the Minutemen posted a 67-62 season-opening victory over Hartford in front of 6,488 fans, the largest crowd to witness a UMass home opener in eight years.
“I’m glad it’s over,” said Ford with a laugh. “We came out very tense, and I thought I was the leading candidate for being the most tense.
“I knew it would be a dogfight,” said the new coach, who arrived in Amherst after coaching at Eastern Kentucky and graduating from the University of Kentucky. “I wanted our guys to play extremely well, and I think we overcompensated for that.”
A late 13-3 run put the Minutemen (1-0) ahead to stay. UMass forward Jeff Viggiano hit a baseline runner with 6:16 remaining to snap a 49-49 tie. Freeman scored the next six points, too, as Hartford went nearly six minutes without a field goal. Viggiano finished with 14 points.
Maurice Maxwell drained a 3-pointer from the left corner with 2:29 left to put the Minutemen up, 62-52.
Hartford’s Aaron Cook answered with a trey and a layup off a steal. David Ruffin made a driving layup with 1:23 to go as the Hawks cut into the UMass lead, 62-59.
After the teams exchanged a pair of free throws, Maxwell made 1-of-2 at the line with 16.9 seconds left. Freshman point guard Chris Lowe finished off Hartford by canning a pair of free throws with 3.1 seconds to play. The Minutemen enjoyed a 24-8 advantage in scoring from the foul line.
Stephane Lasme’s fourth blocked shot of the night, this time against Hawks center Kenny Adeleke (20 points, 10 rebounds) on an attempted dunk with 25 seconds to go, was a final big defensive stop for the Minutemen.
“Being in a close game, winning close games at home, we need that with all the new guys playing together in tight situations,” said Viggiano, who is the lone senior on the UMass roster. “It’s going to help us out down the road.”
MHERST, Mass. -- Slowed by poor shooting, UMass finally took the lead with 6:12 remaining then hung on to defeat Hartford 67-62 Friday.
UMass made five free throws in the final 46 seconds to seal the victory before 6,488 at the Mullins Center in Travis Ford's first game as UMass coach.
Hartford has lost 19 consecutive away games.
The Hawks, coming off a 8-20 season, led 31-29 at halftime and extended that to 46-43 with 12:20 left before UMass rallied.
UMass center Rashaun Freeman led the comeback. He hit a shot from the free-throw line, tipped in a missed layup on a break and made two free throws to give the Minutemen a 57-52 lead with 4:25 left. The Hawks got to 64-61 with 17 seconds left on two Charles Ford free throws.
Freeman scored a game-high 25 points and had six rebounds. Although the Minutemen shot only 38.8 percent (19-for-49) they made 24 of 35 free throws (68.6 percent). Hartford had no free throws in the first half and finished 8-for-10.
"You can draw your own conclusions," Hawks coach Larry Harrison said about the disparity in free throws.
Hartford's new center, Ken Adeleke, was nearly equal to Freeman in the battle of 6-foot-9 lefties. Adeleke, who sat out last season after transferring from Hofstra, had 20 points and a game-high 10 rebounds.
"He was better than I thought," Adeleke said of Freeman. "I did OK against him."
Adeleke played 35 minutes, more than anyone else. He shot 8-for-14 and was 4 of 5 on free throws.He had two blocks and a steal, but made five turnovers.
Aaron Cook scored 15 points for Hartford on 6-for-10 shooting. The Hawks shot 46.4 percent.
Hartford point guards Rich Baker, a sophomore who was out last season after knee surgery, and freshman Chris Cole had mixed results. Baker scored two points and had two assists to four turnovers in 13 minutes. Cole had seven points, six assists and three turnovers in 26 minutes in his debut.
"The UMass pressure was good but that had to do with us being young in the backcourt. At times they did well," Harrison said. "You look at Cole and say `Where's that fat kid going?' and he makes a layup. They'll be good."
ravis Ford was hired as the coach of the Massachusetts men's basketball team to do one thing - win. And despite a shaky start, the Minutemen were able to hold off a pesky Hartford squad 67-62, and deliver a win in Ford's first game.
Rashaun Freeman's 25 points and solid contributions off the bench from Jeff Viggiano and Chris Lowe put UMass in position to pull out the hard-fought victory in front of 6,488 fans at the Mullins Center on Friday night.
UMass appeared to be in control when Maurice Maxwell drained a three-pointer with 2:29 left, giving UMass a 62-52 advantage, but Hartford responded with a 7-0 run to pull within three points.
A Stephane Lasme block on a dunk attempt by Hartford's Kenny Adeleke with 25 seconds left, and free throws by Maxwell and Lowe down the stretch enabled the Minutemen to escape with the victory.
"I'm glad it's over," Ford said. "We survived. I thought we came out very tense, and I was probably one of the leading candidates for being the most tense."
All of the Minutemen looked tense early on, as first game jitters and Hartford's zone led to a slow start.
While UMass struggled through a 5:49 scoring drought midway through the first half, Hartford opened up a 20-12 lead that would have been worse for the Minutemen if not for Viggiano's (nine first half points, 14 total) contributions off the bench.
"We could have been down 12 or 14 if it wasn't for Jeff," Ford said of the team's lone senior. "He gave us some energy, he scored around the basket and he was rebounding. He acted like a guy who was going out there with something to prove."
Lowe also helped bring UMass back, as the freshman point guard provided a defensive spark in his first collegiate game.
"I think everybody else fed off of Chris' energy," Ford said. "He had to earn respect from his teammates and tonight I think he earned some respect."
Lowe's steal and feed to James Life for an open three-pointer capped off a 10-0 UMass run, and gave the Minutemen a 22-20 lead with 3:50 remaining in the half.
The teams traded baskets for the remainder of the half, with Hartford taking a 31-29 lead on Aaron Cook's desperation three off of the glass just before the halftime buzzer.
In the second half, Freeman began to make his presence felt, as he scored eight consecutive UMass points in a three-minute span, en route to a 17 point second stanza.
"I was a little too amped up and there were a couple of shots [in the first half] that I usually make easily," Freeman said. "At halftime I was anxious to go back and do some work. We knew we had to think about what we did and go into the second half focused and ready to grind."
It appeared that UMass would finally pull away, but Adeleke kept the Hawks in the game. The senior center, considered by Ford to be an NBA prospect, scored 20 points and pulled down 10 rebounds in his first game in over a year, as he sat out last season after transferring from Hofstra.
With 7:56 remaining and the game tied at 49, UMass went on a 13-3 run that ended with Maxwell's three. Lowe played a big part in the spurt, hitting a tough leaner as the shot clock wound down on one possession, and then driving and kicking the ball out to Maxwell for the trey on the following possession.
"Coach just told me to play my game and play defense, and everything else would fall in place," Lowe said.
Lowe finished the game with eight points, five rebounds and four assists.
While the Minutemen were able to muster enough offense to get the win, it was the defense that carried them, as starters Maxwell, Art Bowers and Brandon Thomas combined for just nine points.
"Right now we need to hang our hat on defense," Ford said. "Our offense can come and go, but defense is something we can play every night."
For Ford and the Minutemen the focus is now on tomorrow's game at Davidson, but they were able to savor Friday's win briefly.
"We still have a long way to go," Ford said. "It's one win, but we enjoy every win because they're so hard to get."
enior leadership is hard to come by when the roster of that particular team consists of just one name. In the case of the Massachusetts men's basketball team (1-0), senior Jeff Viggiano, the lone senior member, did exactly what he needed to do as a veteran during Friday's 67-62 win over Hartford.
With the team beginning its first game of the season with anxiety and a level of stress, Viggiano came off the bench and displayed a little bit of senior swagger, scoring a total of 14 points throughout the contest.
"I was just trying to come with some energy," Viggiano said. "We seemed a little flat, and, as a senior, if I don't come out and do that, there's no reason anyone else should. I took it upon myself to do just do something. That's my role. I'm not a very vocal person, but if I can come off the bench with energy and help the team that way, that's about all I can do."
With the team uneasy about the season-opener, Viggiano loosened things up and his three-pointer after a rebound by junior Stephane Lasme in the first period cut the Hartford lead to 20-19.
With Hartford maintaining that lead when the teams went into the locker room, Viggiano stepped it up again at the start of the second period.
An assist to junior Rashaun Freeman accounted for the first points of the second period, and a three pointer by Viggiano less than a minute later tied the game at 37-37.
That shift in momentum drove the Minutemen to shake off the tense feelings and gave them the ability needed to knock-off Hartford.
"He played like he wanted to have a great senior year," UMass coach Travis Ford said.
Since Viggiano is the only senior on the team, he is put in a position in which he must be a model for the underclassmen - especially the newcomers.
Ford attributes the seniors hard work to his success and looks at that as something for the younger players on the team to appreciate. Friday's game outlined that concept.
"He doesn't always make those shots and he doesn't always score the points like he did tonight, but he always works hard. He does the right things on and off the court all the time," Ford said. "There's no inconsistency from Jeff Viggiano in that area."
Along with his 14 points, Viggiano added two assists, two steals and four blocks.
Although he is the only senior, other veterans contributed to the victory. Namely Rashaun Freeman, who scored 25 points, and Stephane Lasme, whose late game block was instrumental in the win.
Viggiano and company will look to add to their first win of the season when they head down to Davidson, N.C. to take on Davidson College tomorrow.
MHERST - Looking for positive signs out of the first University of Massachusetts men's basketball game in the Travis Ford era? The Minutemen beat Hartford 67-62 on Friday night before the largest crowd (6,488) for a home opener in eight years, and Ford's charges played hard for 40 minutes on the defensive end.
Not everything went well for the Minutemen. You don't have to take my word for it.
"Offensively, we were never there tonight," said the first-year coac after the contest.
"What I was excited about a little bit is that we won a basketball game without Maurice Maxwell playing well, without Artie Bowers playing well, without Brandon Thomas playing well, without James Life shooting very well," Ford continued. "There were a lot of negatives for us on that side. But we were still able to figure out how to beat a pretty good basketball team."
Yeah, it was a win over Hartford — but remember that the Hawks came to the Mullins Center a couple of years ago and punked Steve Lappas' Minutemen. And UAlbany fans who think the Great Danes are going to cruise past Hartford twice are sadly mistaken. This is a pretty good America East team.
The crowd, the largest opening night gathering since 7,356 attended a 52-40 win over the College of Charleston in 1997, were ready to cheer.
"It was great to see the students there," said UMass' senior forward Jeff Viggiano. "It's the most (students) I've seen there for a first game since I've been here. We obviously appreciate that."
One of the highlights of Friday, other than the win, was the play of freshman point guard Chris Lowe. He came off the bench to play 25 minutes, score eight points and lead the team with four assists. It doesn't fall under the "A Star is Born" category, but for one night, Lowe made it hard for Ford to keep him on the bench. The fans also recognized that, cheering often for the freshman from Mount Vernon (N.Y.) High.
"If this was the first time watching this team, you wouldn't know he was a freshman," said Viggiano. "He carried us through with his energy."
Prior to UMass' exhibition win over Division 2 Dowling, Ford said that even though Lowe is the only true point guard on the roster, he wasn't going to get a pass into big minutes. On Friday, Maxwell started at the point and played 27 minutes.
"We haven't given Chris Lowe anything from Day One," said Ford. "I haven't put him on the starting five not one time, not in practice, we've made him earn everything. He's going to play a lot of minutes and I want him to be ready."
The freshman told us in the media room that he actually thought it was a help coming off the bench rather than starting.
"I could see what my teammates were doing wrong, so I didn't mess up," he said. "Coming off the bench I'm learning, and when I come in, I can execute."
Lowe made his mark with 3:51 left in the first half, when he drove to the basket off a Hartford turnover and kicked the ball back to Life, who drained a three-point basket. That gave UMass a 22-20 lead and completed a comeback that had seen the home team down by as many as eight points just five minutes earlier. In fact, three of his four assists ended up getting three-point hoops for the Minutemen.
"Coach just told me to play my game, play defense and everything else would come in place," said Lowe. "I expected to help the team win — whether it was (playing) two minutes or 25 minutes, it didn't matter as long as I helped the team win."
Lowe made only one basket in the game, a tough pull-up jumper from the left wing with 3:31 left in the game. It gave UMass a seven-point lead and forced Hartford coach Larry Harrison to call time out to stop the bleeding. Lowe clinched the victory when he made two free throws with 3.1 seconds left.
"Chris and I have had a couple of talks in the last couple of days about what I expect from him," Ford explained after the game. "He didn't have the personality I wanted. I didn't think he was enough of a leader. People have to feed off him. He's got to earn respect from his teammates, and I think he earned some respect."
But not that much respect.
"His head doesn't need to be too big, because tomorrow is a new day and he still has a lot of stripes to earn," said Ford.
And a lot of basketball to play.
|at the Mullins Center|
Official Basketball Box Score Hartford vs Massachusetts 11/18/05 7:00 p.m. at Amherst, Mass. - Mullins Center -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- VISITORS: Hartford (0-1) TOT-FG 3-PT REBOUNDS ## Player Name FG-FGA FG-FGA FT-FTA OF DE TOT PF TP A TO BLK S MIN 21 RUFFIN, David....... f 3-6 0-0 0-0 2 2 4 3 6 0 0 0 2 27 34 TAYLOR, Bo.......... f 4-6 0-0 0-0 1 3 4 4 8 1 1 0 1 31 23 ADELEKE, Kenny...... c 8-14 0-0 4-5 3 7 10 4 20 1 5 2 1 35 04 COOK, Aaron......... g 6-10 2-4 1-1 0 0 0 3 15 0 2 0 0 32 22 BAKER, Rich......... g 1-4 0-2 0-0 1 1 2 2 2 2 4 0 0 13 02 CARTER, Paris....... 0-4 0-3 0-0 0 2 2 2 0 0 0 0 0 7 10 FORD, Charles....... 1-4 0-1 2-2 1 0 1 2 4 0 2 0 0 10 15 LOWNDES, Bernard.... 0-0 0-0 0-0 0 0 0 3 0 0 1 1 0 4 25 GLOWIAK, Brian...... 0-1 0-1 0-0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 33 COLE, Chris......... 3-5 0-0 1-2 0 1 1 2 7 6 3 0 1 26 50 TAFO, Fabrice....... 0-2 0-0 0-0 3 1 4 0 0 0 1 0 0 10 55 ZIMNICKAS, Alex..... 0-0 0-0 0-0 0 1 1 1 0 0 0 0 0 3 TEAM................ 3 1 4 Totals.............. 26-56 2-11 8-10 14 19 33 26 62 10 19 3 5 200 TOTAL FG% 1st Half: 15-28 53.6% 2nd Half: 11-28 39.3% Game: 46.4% DEADB 3-Pt. FG% 1st Half: 1-6 16.7% 2nd Half: 1-5 20.0% Game: 18.2% REBS F Throw % 1st Half: 0-0 0.0% 2nd Half: 8-10 80.0% Game: 80.0% 2,3 -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- HOME TEAM: Massachusetts (1-0) TOT-FG 3-PT REBOUNDS ## Player Name FG-FGA FG-FGA FT-FTA OF DE TOT PF TP A TO BLK S MIN 02 Thomas, Brandon..... f 1-3 0-2 0-0 2 0 2 1 2 0 2 0 0 24 13 Lasme, Stephane..... f 0-1 0-0 3-4 2 0 2 5 3 0 1 4 1 23 01 Freeman, Rashaun.... c 8-18 0-0 9-12 4 2 6 3 25 0 2 0 3 29 03 Maxwell, Maurice.... g 1-5 1-2 4-6 1 1 2 1 7 3 1 0 0 27 34 Bowers, Art......... g 0-0 0-0 0-0 0 2 2 0 0 1 2 0 1 11 05 Life, James......... 2-9 2-7 2-3 1 2 3 0 8 2 2 0 2 28 14 Lowe, Chris......... 1-3 0-0 6-8 1 4 5 4 8 4 2 0 1 25 22 Viggiano, Jeff...... 6-9 2-3 0-2 3 3 6 4 14 2 3 4 2 30 23 Carrier, Lawrence... 0-1 0-1 0-0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 3 TEAM................ 1 1 2 Totals.............. 19-49 5-15 24-35 15 15 30 18 67 12 15 8 10 200 TOTAL FG% 1st Half: 8-25 32.0% 2nd Half: 11-24 45.8% Game: 38.8% DEADB 3-Pt. FG% 1st Half: 2-8 25.0% 2nd Half: 3-7 42.9% Game: 33.3% REBS F Throw % 1st Half: 11-16 68.8% 2nd Half: 13-19 68.4% Game: 68.6% 4,1 -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Officials: David Walker, Larry Scirotto, Joe Pescitelli Technical fouls: Hartford-None. Massachusetts-None. Attendance: 6488 Score by Periods 1st 2nd Total Hartford...................... 31 31 - 62 Massachusetts................. 29 38 - 67 ID-391550 Points in the paint-HART 38,UMASS 24. Points off turnovers-HART 12,UMASS 17. 2nd chance points-HART 14,UMASS 19. Fast break points-HART 4,UMASS 5. Bench points-HART 11,UMASS 30. Score tied-11 times. Lead changed-8 times. Last FG-HART 2nd-01:22, UMASS 2nd-02:27. Largest lead-HART by 8 1st-08:51, UMASS by 10 2nd-02:27.
Play-by-Play Hartford vs Massachusetts 11/18/05 7:00 p.m. at Amherst, Mass. - Mullins Center 1st PERIOD Play-by-Play (Page 1) HOME TEAM: Massachusetts TIME SCORE MAR VISITORS: Hartford ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ TURNOVR by Thomas, Brandon 19:32 19:30 STEAL by ADELEKE, Kenny 19:29 TURNOVR by ADELEKE, Kenny STEAL by Bowers, Art 19:27 MISSED LAYUP by Freeman, Rashaun 19:24 REBOUND (DEF) by TAYLOR, Bo BLOCK by Lasme, Stephane 19:17 MISSED LAYUP by ADELEKE, Kenny REBOUND (DEF) by Bowers, Art 19:14 MISSED JUMPER by Lasme, Stephane 19:00 BLOCK by ADELEKE, Kenny REBOUND (OFF) by Thomas, Brandon 18:58 GOOD! LAYUP by Thomas, Brandon [PNT] 18:54 2-0 H 2 18:42 2-2 T 1 GOOD! LAYUP by TAYLOR, Bo [PNT] MISSED JUMPER by Freeman, Rashaun 18:12 REBOUND (DEF) by BAKER, Rich 18:03 2-4 V 2 GOOD! JUMPER by TAYLOR, Bo GOOD! FT SHOT by Lasme, Stephane 17:30 3-4 V 1 FOUL by RUFFIN, David GOOD! FT SHOT by Lasme, Stephane 17:30 4-4 T 2 17:30 SUB IN : Viggiano, Jeff 17:30 SUB OUT: Freeman, Rashaun 17:17 MISSED JUMPER by ADELEKE, Kenny 17:17 REBOUND (OFF) by BAKER, Rich BLOCK by Viggiano, Jeff 17:14 MISSED JUMPER by BAKER, Rich REBOUND (DEF) by Bowers, Art 17:12 TURNOVR by Bowers, Art 17:09 17:07 STEAL by TAYLOR, Bo BLOCK by Lasme, Stephane 17:04 MISSED LAYUP by TAYLOR, Bo 17:02 REBOUND (OFF) by ADELEKE, Kenny 16:59 4-6 V 2 GOOD! LAYUP by ADELEKE, Kenny [PNT] MISSED 3 PTR by Thomas, Brandon 16:37 REBOUND (DEF) by RUFFIN, David BLOCK by Lasme, Stephane 16:29 MISSED LAYUP by RUFFIN, David 16:27 REBOUND (OFF) by (TEAM) 16:27 SUB IN : Life, James 16:27 SUB OUT: Bowers, Art 16:18 4-8 V 4 GOOD! LAYUP by COOK, Aaron [PNT] 16:18 ASSIST by BAKER, Rich GOOD! JUMPER by Viggiano, Jeff 15:58 6-8 V 2 ASSIST by Bowers, Art 15:58 15:43 6-10 V 4 GOOD! JUMPER by RUFFIN, David 15:43 ASSIST by TAYLOR, Bo MISSED 3 PTR by Life, James 15:09 REBOUND (OFF) by Maxwell, Maurice 15:09 GOOD! LAYUP by Viggiano, Jeff [PNT] 14:48 8-10 V 2 FOUL by Lasme, Stephane 14:15 14:15 TIMEOUT MEDIA 14:15 SUB IN : Lowe, Chris 14:15 SUB OUT: Thomas, Brandon REBOUND (DEF) by Lowe, Chris 14:11 MISSED 3 PTR by BAKER, Rich 14:08 FOUL by BAKER, Rich 14:08 SUB IN : Freeman, Rashaun 14:08 SUB OUT: Maxwell, Maurice MISSED LAYUP by Viggiano, Jeff 13:45 REBOUND (DEF) by TAYLOR, Bo 13:29 8-12 V 4 GOOD! JUMPER by COOK, Aaron [PNT] TURNOVR by Lasme, Stephane 13:12 REBOUND (DEF) by Viggiano, Jeff 12:48 MISSED JUMPER by ADELEKE, Kenny 12:46 FOUL by TAYLOR, Bo 12:46 SUB IN : Thomas, Brandon 12:46 SUB OUT: Lasme, Stephane TURNOVR by Thomas, Brandon 12:23 12:20 STEAL by RUFFIN, David REBOUND (DEF) by Viggiano, Jeff 12:10 MISSED 3 PTR by COOK, Aaron GOOD! FT SHOT by Life, James 12:03 9-12 V 3 FOUL by COOK, Aaron GOOD! FT SHOT by Life, James 12:03 10-12 V 2 SUB IN : COLE, Chris 12:03 SUB IN : Bowers, Art SUB IN : FORD, Charles 12:03 SUB OUT: Life, James SUB OUT: RUFFIN, David 12:03 SUB OUT: BAKER, Rich 12:03 FOUL by Freeman, Rashaun 11:49 11:49 TIMEOUT MEDIA 11:44 TURNOVR by FORD, Charles 11:44 SUB IN : Maxwell, Maurice 11:44 SUB OUT: Lowe, Chris MISSED JUMPER by Freeman, Rashaun 11:41 REBOUND (DEF) by (DEADBALL) FOUL by Thomas, Brandon 11:40 11:14 10-14 V 4 GOOD! JUMPER by TAYLOR, Bo 11:14 ASSIST by COLE, Chris MISSED JUMPER by Freeman, Rashaun 10:50 REBOUND (OFF) by Viggiano, Jeff 10:50 GOOD! LAYUP by Viggiano, Jeff [PNT] 10:46 12-14 V 2 BLOCK by Viggiano, Jeff 10:34 MISSED JUMPER by FORD, Charles 10:31 REBOUND (OFF) by ADELEKE, Kenny 10:29 12-16 V 4 GOOD! LAYUP by ADELEKE, Kenny [PNT] TURNOVR by Bowers, Art 10:05 SUB IN : TAFO, Fabrice 10:05 SUB IN : Life, James SUB OUT: TAYLOR, Bo 10:05 SUB IN : Lasme, Stephane 10:05 SUB IN : Carrier, Lawrence 10:05 SUB OUT: Viggiano, Jeff 10:05 SUB OUT: Freeman, Rashaun 10:05 SUB OUT: Thomas, Brandon 09:54 12-18 V 6 GOOD! LAYUP by COLE, Chris [PNT] TURNOVR by Life, James 09:37 TIMEOUT 30sec 09:37 09:21 TURNOVR by FORD, Charles STEAL by Lasme, Stephane 09:19 MISSED JUMPER by Life, James 09:12 REBOUND (DEF) by ADELEKE, Kenny SUB IN : CARTER, Paris 09:10 SUB OUT: FORD, Charles 09:10 08:51 12-20 V 8 GOOD! JUMPER by ADELEKE, Kenny [PNT] MISSED 3 PTR by Maxwell, Maurice 08:31 REBOUND (DEF) by CARTER, Paris REBOUND (DEF) by Maxwell, Maurice 08:13 MISSED 3 PTR by COOK, Aaron MISSED 3 PTR by Carrier, Lawrence 08:04 REBOUND (DEF) by COLE, Chris 07:56 MISSED 3 PTR by CARTER, Paris 07:56 REBOUND (OFF) by TAFO, Fabrice 07:46 MISSED 3 PTR by CARTER, Paris 07:46 REBOUND (OFF) by TAFO, Fabrice 07:17 FOUL by COOK, Aaron 07:17 TURNOVR by COOK, Aaron TIMEOUT MEDIA 07:17 SUB IN : TAYLOR, Bo 07:17 SUB IN : Lowe, Chris SUB IN : RUFFIN, David 07:17 SUB IN : Freeman, Rashaun SUB OUT: ADELEKE, Kenny 07:17 SUB IN : Viggiano, Jeff SUB OUT: COOK, Aaron 07:17 SUB OUT: Lasme, Stephane 07:17 SUB OUT: Carrier, Lawrence 07:17 SUB OUT: Maxwell, Maurice TURNOVR by Life, James 07:06 06:41 TURNOVR by TAFO, Fabrice MISSED 3 PTR by Life, James 06:28 REBOUND (DEF) by TAFO, Fabrice 06:25 TIMEOUT 30sec SUB IN : ADELEKE, Kenny 06:25 SUB IN : Thomas, Brandon SUB OUT: TAFO, Fabrice 06:25 SUB OUT: Bowers, Art FOUL by Freeman, Rashaun 06:12 06:10 TURNOVR by BAKER, Rich STEAL by Freeman, Rashaun 06:07 MISSED LAYUP by Viggiano, Jeff 06:03 REBOUND (DEF) by CARTER, Paris 05:55 TURNOVR by ADELEKE, Kenny GOOD! FT SHOT by Freeman, Rashaun 05:40 13-20 V 7 FOUL by CARTER, Paris GOOD! FT SHOT by Freeman, Rashaun 05:40 14-20 V 6 05:21 TURNOVR by BAKER, Rich STEAL by Viggiano, Jeff 05:20 MISSED JUMPER by Lowe, Chris 05:05 REBOUND (DEF) by ADELEKE, Kenny REBOUND (DEF) by Lowe, Chris 04:40 MISSED JUMPER by CARTER, Paris GOOD! LAYUP by Freeman, Rashaun [FB/PNT] 04:33 16-20 V 4 ASSIST by Viggiano, Jeff 04:33 MISSED FT SHOT by Freeman, Rashaun 04:33 FOUL by BAKER, Rich REBOUND (OFF) by Viggiano, Jeff 04:33 SUB IN : BAKER, Rich 04:33 SUB IN : Lasme, Stephane SUB OUT: COLE, Chris 04:33 SUB OUT: Thomas, Brandon MISSED 3 PTR by Life, James 04:28 REBOUND (OFF) by Lasme, Stephane 04:28 GOOD! 3 PTR by Viggiano, Jeff 04:23 19-20 V 1 ASSIST by Lowe, Chris 04:23 03:56 TURNOVR by ADELEKE, Kenny STEAL by Life, James 03:55 GOOD! 3 PTR by Life, James 03:51 22-20 H 2 ASSIST by Lowe, Chris 03:51 03:48 TIMEOUT 30sec SUB IN : COLE, Chris 03:48 SUB IN : FORD, Charles 03:48 SUB OUT: CARTER, Paris 03:48 SUB OUT: BAKER, Rich 03:48 FOUL by Lasme, Stephane 03:36 03:36 TIMEOUT media SUB IN : LOWNDES, Bernard 03:36 SUB IN : Thomas, Brandon SUB OUT: RUFFIN, David 03:36 SUB OUT: Lasme, Stephane 03:24 TURNOVR by COLE, Chris STEAL by Life, James 03:23 MISSED FT SHOT by Life, James 03:20 FOUL by FORD, Charles 03:20 REBOUND (DEF) by ADELEKE, Kenny FOUL by Lowe, Chris 03:10 03:01 22-22 T 3 GOOD! DUNK by ADELEKE, Kenny [PNT] 03:01 ASSIST by COLE, Chris TURNOVR by Lowe, Chris 02:45 02:45 SUB IN : Maxwell, Maurice 02:45 SUB OUT: Lowe, Chris 02:36 22-24 V 2 GOOD! LAYUP by FORD, Charles [PNT] GOOD! FT SHOT by Maxwell, Maurice 02:22 23-24 V 1 FOUL by FORD, Charles GOOD! FT SHOT by Maxwell, Maurice 02:22 24-24 T 4 SUB IN : GLOWIAK, Brian 02:22 SUB OUT: FORD, Charles 02:22 02:12 24-26 V 2 GOOD! DUNK by ADELEKE, Kenny [PNT] 02:12 ASSIST by COLE, Chris GOOD! LAYUP by Freeman, Rashaun [PNT] 01:58 26-26 T 5 ASSIST by Maxwell, Maurice 01:58 01:30 TURNOVR by LOWNDES, Bernard STEAL by Viggiano, Jeff 01:28 MISSED FT SHOT by Viggiano, Jeff 01:23 FOUL by LOWNDES, Bernard REBOUND (OFF) by (DEADBALL) 01:23 MISSED FT SHOT by Viggiano, Jeff 01:23 REBOUND (DEF) by ADELEKE, Kenny 01:23 SUB IN : Lowe, Chris 01:23 SUB OUT: Life, James 01:06 26-28 V 2 GOOD! LAYUP by COLE, Chris [PNT] MISSED JUMPER by Maxwell, Maurice 00:55 REBOUND (OFF) by Viggiano, Jeff 00:55 TURNOVR by Maxwell, Maurice 00:48 00:36 TURNOVR by COLE, Chris STEAL by Lowe, Chris 00:34 GOOD! FT SHOT by Lowe, Chris 00:34 27-28 V 1 FOUL by COLE, Chris MISSED FT SHOT by Lowe, Chris 00:34 REBOUND (OFF) by (DEADBALL) 00:34 00:34 SUB IN : Life, James 00:34 SUB OUT: Maxwell, Maurice MISSED LAYUP by Freeman, Rashaun 00:21 BLOCK by LOWNDES, Bernard REBOUND (OFF) by Lowe, Chris 00:18 GOOD! FT SHOT by Freeman, Rashaun 00:13 28-28 T 6 FOUL by LOWNDES, Bernard GOOD! FT SHOT by Freeman, Rashaun 00:13 29-28 H 1 SUB IN : COOK, Aaron 00:13 SUB IN : Maxwell, Maurice SUB OUT: LOWNDES, Bernard 00:13 SUB OUT: Life, James 00:01 29-31 V 2 GOOD! 3 PTR by COOK, Aaron Hartford 31, Massachusetts 29 1st period-only InPaint Pts-T/O 2nd-Chc FastBrk BnchPts Ties Leads Hartford 22 6 6 0 6 2 3 Massachusetts 10 8 11 5 15 4 2 2nd PERIOD Play-by-Play (Page 1) HOME TEAM: Massachusetts TIME SCORE MAR VISITORS: Hartford ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ MISSED 3 PTR by Thomas, Brandon 19:49 REBOUND (DEF) by RUFFIN, David 19:17 TURNOVR by BAKER, Rich STEAL by Freeman, Rashaun 19:15 TURNOVR by Freeman, Rashaun 18:50 18:46 STEAL by RUFFIN, David 18:42 MISSED LAYUP by RUFFIN, David 18:42 REBOUND (OFF) by RUFFIN, David 18:22 29-33 V 4 GOOD! JUMPER by BAKER, Rich 18:08 SUB IN : Life, James 18:08 SUB IN : Lowe, Chris 18:08 SUB IN : Viggiano, Jeff 18:08 SUB OUT: Thomas, Brandon 18:08 SUB OUT: Maxwell, Maurice 18:08 SUB OUT: Bowers, Art GOOD! JUMPER by Freeman, Rashaun [PNT] 17:44 31-33 V 2 ASSIST by Viggiano, Jeff 17:44 17:26 MISSED JUMPER by TAYLOR, Bo 17:26 REBOUND (OFF) by RUFFIN, David 17:23 31-35 V 4 GOOD! LAYUP by RUFFIN, David [PNT] MISSED 3 PTR by Life, James 17:12 REBOUND (OFF) by Life, James 17:12 GOOD! 3 PTR by Life, James 17:02 34-35 V 1 ASSIST by Lowe, Chris 17:02 16:56 34-37 V 3 GOOD! LAYUP by ADELEKE, Kenny [FB/PNT] 16:56 ASSIST by BAKER, Rich GOOD! 3 PTR by Viggiano, Jeff 16:31 37-37 T 7 ASSIST by Life, James 16:31 REBOUND (DEF) by Viggiano, Jeff 16:19 MISSED 3 PTR by BAKER, Rich 16:18 FOUL by ADELEKE, Kenny 16:13 SUB IN : Thomas, Brandon 16:13 SUB OUT: Viggiano, Jeff 15:58 FOUL by RUFFIN, David TIMEOUT MEDIA 15:58 MISSED JUMPER by Freeman, Rashaun 15:55 REBOUND (OFF) by Lasme, Stephane 15:55 15:52 FOUL by TAYLOR, Bo TURNOVR by Freeman, Rashaun 15:46 15:37 TURNOVR by BAKER, Rich SUB IN : COLE, Chris 15:37 SUB OUT: BAKER, Rich 15:37 GOOD! FT SHOT by Freeman, Rashaun 15:24 38-37 H 1 FOUL by ADELEKE, Kenny GOOD! FT SHOT by Freeman, Rashaun 15:24 39-37 H 2 15:09 MISSED JUMPER by COOK, Aaron 15:09 REBOUND (OFF) by (TEAM) REBOUND (DEF) by Life, James 15:05 MISSED JUMPER by RUFFIN, David MISSED LAYUP by Freeman, Rashaun 14:55 REBOUND (DEF) by (TEAM) 14:28 39-39 T 8 GOOD! LAYUP by ADELEKE, Kenny [PNT] GOOD! JUMPER by Freeman, Rashaun [PNT] 14:06 41-39 H 2 ASSIST by Life, James 14:06 13:41 41-41 T 9 GOOD! LAYUP by ADELEKE, Kenny [PNT] FOUL by Lasme, Stephane 13:41 41-42 V 1 GOOD! FT SHOT by ADELEKE, Kenny SUB IN : FORD, Charles 13:41 SUB IN : Viggiano, Jeff SUB OUT: RUFFIN, David 13:41 SUB OUT: Lasme, Stephane MISSED 3 PTR by Life, James 13:32 REBOUND (DEF) by ADELEKE, Kenny 13:08 41-44 V 3 GOOD! JUMPER by TAYLOR, Bo 13:08 ASSIST by ADELEKE, Kenny MISSED LAYUP by Freeman, Rashaun 12:47 BLOCK by ADELEKE, Kenny REBOUND (OFF) by Thomas, Brandon 12:45 MISSED LAYUP by Lowe, Chris 12:40 REBOUND (OFF) by Freeman, Rashaun 12:40 GOOD! LAYUP by Freeman, Rashaun [PNT] 12:37 43-44 V 1 MISSED FT SHOT by Freeman, Rashaun 12:37 FOUL by ADELEKE, Kenny 12:37 REBOUND (DEF) by TAYLOR, Bo 12:37 SUB IN : Maxwell, Maurice 12:37 SUB OUT: Life, James 12:22 43-46 V 3 GOOD! LAYUP by COLE, Chris [PNT] GOOD! LAYUP by Freeman, Rashaun [PNT] 11:59 45-46 V 1 ASSIST by Maxwell, Maurice 11:59 11:47 TURNOVR by ADELEKE, Kenny TIMEOUT media 11:47 SUB IN : ZIMNICKAS, Alex 11:47 SUB OUT: ADELEKE, Kenny 11:47 GOOD! FT SHOT by Lowe, Chris 11:19 46-46 T 10 FOUL by TAYLOR, Bo MISSED FT SHOT by Lowe, Chris 11:19 REBOUND (DEF) by (DEADBALL) FOUL by Viggiano, Jeff 11:19 SUB IN : LOWNDES, Bernard 11:19 SUB IN : Lasme, Stephane SUB IN : TAFO, Fabrice 11:19 SUB OUT: Freeman, Rashaun SUB OUT: ZIMNICKAS, Alex 11:19 SUB OUT: TAYLOR, Bo 11:19 11:00 TURNOVR by COOK, Aaron SUB IN : ZIMNICKAS, Alex 11:00 SUB IN : Freeman, Rashaun SUB OUT: LOWNDES, Bernard 11:00 SUB OUT: Lasme, Stephane MISSED LAYUP by Freeman, Rashaun 10:37 REBOUND (DEF) by ZIMNICKAS, Alex 10:09 MISSED LAYUP by FORD, Charles 10:09 REBOUND (OFF) by TAFO, Fabrice 10:06 MISSED LAYUP by TAFO, Fabrice 10:06 REBOUND (OFF) by FORD, Charles FOUL by Lowe, Chris 09:56 SUB IN : LOWNDES, Bernard 09:56 SUB IN : Lasme, Stephane SUB OUT: ZIMNICKAS, Alex 09:56 SUB OUT: Freeman, Rashaun REBOUND (DEF) by Lowe, Chris 09:26 MISSED JUMPER by COLE, Chris GOOD! FT SHOT by Lowe, Chris 09:20 47-46 H 1 FOUL by LOWNDES, Bernard GOOD! FT SHOT by Lowe, Chris 09:20 48-46 H 2 SUB IN : CARTER, Paris 09:20 SUB IN : Life, James SUB OUT: COOK, Aaron 09:20 SUB OUT: Lowe, Chris BLOCK by Viggiano, Jeff 08:56 MISSED LAYUP by TAFO, Fabrice 08:54 REBOUND (OFF) by (TEAM) SUB IN : ZIMNICKAS, Alex 08:54 SUB IN : Freeman, Rashaun SUB OUT: LOWNDES, Bernard 08:54 SUB OUT: Lasme, Stephane BLOCK by Viggiano, Jeff 08:46 MISSED LAYUP by COLE, Chris REBOUND (DEF) by Freeman, Rashaun 08:43 MISSED JUMPER by Maxwell, Maurice 08:32 REBOUND (OFF) by Freeman, Rashaun 08:32 08:30 FOUL by CARTER, Paris SUB IN : ADELEKE, Kenny 08:30 SUB IN : RUFFIN, David 08:30 SUB IN : TAYLOR, Bo 08:30 SUB OUT: ZIMNICKAS, Alex 08:30 SUB OUT: TAFO, Fabrice 08:30 SUB OUT: FORD, Charles 08:30 GOOD! FT SHOT by Freeman, Rashaun 08:29 49-46 H 3 MISSED FT SHOT by Freeman, Rashaun 08:29 REBOUND (OFF) by (TEAM) 08:29 MISSED 3 PTR by Viggiano, Jeff 08:24 REBOUND (DEF) by ADELEKE, Kenny 07:59 MISSED 3 PTR by CARTER, Paris 07:59 REBOUND (OFF) by TAYLOR, Bo FOUL by Viggiano, Jeff 07:58 SUB IN : COOK, Aaron 07:58 SUB IN : Lasme, Stephane SUB OUT: CARTER, Paris 07:58 SUB IN : Lowe, Chris 07:58 SUB OUT: Viggiano, Jeff 07:58 SUB OUT: Thomas, Brandon 07:55 49-48 H 1 GOOD! LAYUP by COOK, Aaron [PNT] 07:55 ASSIST by COLE, Chris FOUL by Maxwell, Maurice 07:55 49-49 T 11 GOOD! FT SHOT by COOK, Aaron MISSED JUMPER by Life, James 07:36 REBOUND (OFF) by Freeman, Rashaun 07:36 MISSED TIP-IN by Freeman, Rashaun 07:31 REBOUND (DEF) by (DEADBALL) FOUL by Lasme, Stephane 07:31 07:31 SUB IN : Viggiano, Jeff 07:31 SUB OUT: Lasme, Stephane REBOUND (DEF) by Lowe, Chris 07:14 MISSED JUMPER by ADELEKE, Kenny FOUL by Viggiano, Jeff 06:51 TURNOVR by Viggiano, Jeff 06:51 06:51 SUB IN : Lasme, Stephane 06:51 SUB OUT: Freeman, Rashaun 06:36 FOUL by TAYLOR, Bo 06:36 TURNOVR by TAYLOR, Bo SUB IN : TAFO, Fabrice 06:36 SUB OUT: TAYLOR, Bo 06:36 GOOD! LAYUP by Viggiano, Jeff [PNT] 06:13 51-49 H 2 ASSIST by Maxwell, Maurice 06:13 06:05 TIMEOUT 30sec FOUL by Lowe, Chris 05:52 51-50 H 1 GOOD! FT SHOT by COLE, Chris REBOUND (DEF) by Freeman, Rashaun 05:52 MISSED FT SHOT by COLE, Chris 05:52 SUB IN : Freeman, Rashaun 05:52 SUB OUT: Lasme, Stephane GOOD! JUMPER by Freeman, Rashaun [PNT] 05:29 53-50 H 3 05:08 TURNOVR by ADELEKE, Kenny STEAL by Freeman, Rashaun 05:06 MISSED LAYUP by Maxwell, Maurice 05:04 REBOUND (OFF) by Freeman, Rashaun 05:04 GOOD! TIP-IN by Freeman, Rashaun [PNT] 05:01 55-50 H 5 FOUL by Freeman, Rashaun 04:43 TIMEOUT TEAM 04:43 04:43 55-51 H 4 GOOD! FT SHOT by ADELEKE, Kenny 04:43 55-52 H 3 GOOD! FT SHOT by ADELEKE, Kenny SUB IN : ZIMNICKAS, Alex 04:43 SUB OUT: ADELEKE, Kenny 04:43 GOOD! FT SHOT by Freeman, Rashaun 04:25 56-52 H 4 FOUL by ZIMNICKAS, Alex GOOD! FT SHOT by Freeman, Rashaun 04:25 57-52 H 5 SUB IN : TAYLOR, Bo 04:25 SUB IN : Lasme, Stephane SUB IN : ADELEKE, Kenny 04:25 SUB OUT: Freeman, Rashaun SUB OUT: ZIMNICKAS, Alex 04:25 SUB OUT: TAFO, Fabrice 04:25 04:04 TURNOVR by COLE, Chris SUB IN : ZIMNICKAS, Alex 04:04 SUB IN : Freeman, Rashaun SUB IN : TAFO, Fabrice 04:04 SUB OUT: Lasme, Stephane SUB OUT: TAYLOR, Bo 04:04 SUB OUT: ADELEKE, Kenny 04:04 TIMEOUT 30sec 03:47 GOOD! JUMPER by Lowe, Chris 03:31 59-52 H 7 03:17 TIMEOUT 30sec SUB IN : ADELEKE, Kenny 03:17 SUB IN : Lasme, Stephane SUB IN : TAYLOR, Bo 03:17 SUB OUT: Freeman, Rashaun SUB OUT: ZIMNICKAS, Alex 03:17 SUB OUT: TAFO, Fabrice 03:17 REBOUND (DEF) by Life, James 03:00 MISSED JUMPER by COOK, Aaron GOOD! 3 PTR by Maxwell, Maurice 02:27 62-52 H 10 ASSIST by Lowe, Chris 02:27 02:10 62-55 H 7 GOOD! 3 PTR by COOK, Aaron 02:10 ASSIST by COLE, Chris TURNOVR by Lowe, Chris 01:54 01:53 STEAL by COLE, Chris 01:51 62-57 H 5 GOOD! LAYUP by COOK, Aaron [FB/PNT] 01:51 ASSIST by COLE, Chris TIMEOUT 30sec 01:47 01:47 SUB IN : Freeman, Rashaun 01:47 SUB OUT: Lasme, Stephane FOUL by Viggiano, Jeff 01:35 TURNOVR by Viggiano, Jeff 01:35 01:35 TIMEOUT MEDIA 01:22 62-59 H 3 GOOD! LAYUP by RUFFIN, David [PNT] TURNOVR by Viggiano, Jeff 01:05 01:05 SUB IN : Lasme, Stephane 01:05 SUB OUT: Freeman, Rashaun REBOUND (DEF) by (DEADBALL) 00:47 MISSED LAYUP by ADELEKE, Kenny MISSED FT SHOT by Lasme, Stephane 00:46 FOUL by ADELEKE, Kenny REBOUND (OFF) by (DEADBALL) 00:46 GOOD! FT SHOT by Lasme, Stephane 00:46 63-59 H 4 00:42 TIMEOUT TEAM BLOCK by Lasme, Stephane 00:25 MISSED LAYUP by ADELEKE, Kenny REBOUND (DEF) by (TEAM) 00:25 00:25 SUB IN : Freeman, Rashaun 00:25 SUB OUT: Lasme, Stephane MISSED FT SHOT by Maxwell, Maurice 00:22 FOUL by COLE, Chris REBOUND (OFF) by (DEADBALL) 00:22 GOOD! FT SHOT by Maxwell, Maurice 00:22 64-59 H 5 SUB IN : GLOWIAK, Brian 00:22 SUB IN : Lasme, Stephane SUB OUT: RUFFIN, David 00:22 SUB OUT: Freeman, Rashaun SUB IN : FORD, Charles 00:21 SUB OUT: COLE, Chris 00:21 FOUL by Lowe, Chris 00:17 64-60 H 4 GOOD! FT SHOT by FORD, Charles 00:17 64-61 H 3 GOOD! FT SHOT by FORD, Charles GOOD! FT SHOT by Maxwell, Maurice 00:17 65-61 H 4 FOUL by COOK, Aaron MISSED FT SHOT by Maxwell, Maurice 00:17 REBOUND (DEF) by ADELEKE, Kenny 00:17 SUB IN : Freeman, Rashaun 00:07 MISSED 3 PTR by GLOWIAK, Brian 00:07 REBOUND (OFF) by ADELEKE, Kenny FOUL by Lasme, Stephane 00:06 MISSED FT SHOT by ADELEKE, Kenny 00:06 REBOUND (OFF) by (DEADBALL) 00:06 65-62 H 3 GOOD! FT SHOT by ADELEKE, Kenny SUB IN : ZIMNICKAS, Alex 00:06 SUB OUT: Lasme, Stephane SUB IN : RUFFIN, David 00:06 SUB OUT: ADELEKE, Kenny 00:06 SUB OUT: GLOWIAK, Brian 00:06 GOOD! FT SHOT by Lowe, Chris 00:03 66-62 H 4 FOUL by RUFFIN, David GOOD! FT SHOT by Lowe, Chris 00:03 67-62 H 5 SUB IN : TAFO, Fabrice 00:03 SUB OUT: ZIMNICKAS, Alex 00:03 00:00 MISSED 3 PTR by FORD, Charles 00:00 REBOUND (OFF) by (DEADBALL) Massachusetts 67, Hartford 62 2nd period-only InPaint Pts-T/O 2nd-Chc FastBrk BnchPts Ties Leads Hartford 16 6 8 4 5 3 1 Massachusetts 14 9 8 0 15 2 2 POINTS OFF TURNOVERS 1 2 - Tot Hartford................ 6 6 - 12 Massachusetts........... 8 9 - 17 POINTS IN PAINT 1 2 - Tot Hartford................ 22 16 - 38 Massachusetts........... 10 14 - 24 2ND CHANCE POINTS 1 2 - Tot Hartford................ 6 8 - 14 Massachusetts........... 11 8 - 19 FAST BREAK POINTS 1 2 - Tot Hartford................ 0 4 - 4 Massachusetts........... 5 0 - 5 BENCH POINTS 1 2 - Tot Hartford................ 6 5 - 11 Massachusetts........... 15 15 - 30 SCORE TIED BY 1 2 - Tot Hartford................ 2 3 - 5 Massachusetts........... 4 2 - 6 LEAD GAINED BY 1 2 - Tot Hartford................ 3 1 - 4 Massachusetts........... 2 2 - 4