Redmen Must Be Ready vs. Iona
By Earle Barroll, The Massachusetts Daily Collegian Staff Reporter, February 4, 1971
At yesterday's Varsity M Club luncheon assistant coach Peter Broaca in assessing this game said that this will be a tough game for the Redmen as far as mental attitude is concerned. Coming off of three big games in a row there is always that chance for a letdown feeling and the Redmen will have to counter this to come out on top against the upset-minded Gaels.
Iona is a New York City team which means they come ready to play. They realize that a win for them would be a big plus for their season and anything is go for them this evening.
They possess as their forte a balanced attack with four players in double figures in scoring, and a tough, stingy defense which ranks 15th in the nation.
As for their floor play the Gaels like to move all over the court on both offense and defense. During the course of the game forwards move to the backcourt and guards move to the frontcourt. This switching has posed problems for their opponents as it has caused for mismatches resulting in errors.
Art Wiggins is the top Iona threat, scoring at a 19 point clip and averaging 11 rebounds per contest as a 6’4 forward. He'll be joined up front by 6’10 center Bernie Sochia whose stats read 10 and 10 for points and caroms.
Harry Hart, at 6’1 mans the third frontcourt position but will also see action in the backcourt in the Gaels' switching maneuvers. He is averaging 11 points and 10 rebounds.
In the backcourt Joe Mazella and Bob Grennin will be starting with Quinn also seeing a lot of action. These three will be rotating all over the court during the game trying to create mismatches. Mazella is the top scoring threat of the three averaging 16 points per game.
For the Redmen Julius Erving and John Betancourt are the only sure starters for the game. Coach Leaman will make the decision on the other three starters prior to the game on the basis of yesterday’s practice and the physical condition of both Mike Pagliara and Ken Mathias.
VARSITY M – At yesterday’s luncheon of the UMass Varsity M Club basketball and particularly the Holy Cross game was the center of attraction. Besides coach Broaca’s comments, head coach Leaman and two stars of the Crusader game, Tom McLaughlin and Chris Coffin also had words for the large gathering.
Leaman was noticeably happy over the win and gave his rather candid play by play of the game films that were made ready for the luncheon by the hard working film team.
McLaughlin was lauded by his coach for his first two efforts as a Redman. Commented Leaman: “I told Tom last week that I’d slowly work him into playing shape by playing him eight or nine minutes a game for the first few contests. But who would ever of thought that he would be playing 79 out of 80 minutes of fine basketball in his first two contests.”
McLaughlin took time to thank the coaches, the players and the fans for making his first two games the success that they were. He concluded by thanking a couple of members of the team for catching the flu!
Leaman cited Coffin as the unsung hero of the team. “He hasn't gotten the recognition that he deserves,” noted the coach. “He does a great job on defense and sacrifices offensive glory for the role that he plays in defensing the toughest forward on the opposing team and crashing in on the offensive boards.”
McLaughlin YanCon Soph of Week
From The Massachusetts Daily Collegian, February 5, 1971
Tom McLaughlin, UMass’ super transfer, has been named the Yankee Conference sophomore of the week for his play in the Redmen’s wins over both Northeastern and Holy Cross. The 6’4 soph was called into immediate action due to the illness of two of his teammates and responded with efforts of 12 and 14 points in his first two varsity starts.
Picked as the top backcourt man of the week was guard Al Vaughn from UConn. Vaughn, a 6’2 sophomore, scored 53 points in two games for the Huskies. He hit 9 of 15 field goals at Fairfield and 13 of 24 at Maine for a 22 for 39 streak.
Nick Susi, a 6’6 junior center from Maine, was selected as the top frontcourt man of the week. He scored 29 points and grabbed 39 rebounds as Maine lost to Hofstra before upsetting UConn. Susi snared 26 rebounds in the 112-99 win over the Huskies.
Other nominations included: Backcourt – Paul Bessey (Maine), John Betancourt (UMass) and Ray Ortiz (Vermont); Frontcourt – Julius Erving (UMass), Bob Staak (UConn) and Mark Miller (Vermont).
Redmen Trounce Iona, 92-51
By Earle Barroll, The Massachusetts Daily Collegian Staff Reporter, February 5, 1971
Fashioning what could be called a slow methodical killing, the UMass basketball team trounced Iona College, 92-51, last night before a crowd of 4000 at Curry Hicks Cage. The win upped the Redmen to 14-2 on the season with the loss dropping Iona to 8-6.
The tempo for this game was evident right from the start to keep the Redmen from opening up and in so doing keeping itself in the contest.
Well, as the score indicates, this backfired as the Redmen, with some nifty outside shooting and stingy defense of its own, turned the tables on the Gaels and moved away slowly but surely in what had to be the most lackadaisical first half of the season to go into the locker room at halftime on top, 38-24.
When the second half began it was assumed that Iona might pick its offense up to try to get back into the game. But instead it reverted to its first half plan, the Redmen kept the pressure on, and with coach Jack Leaman shuffling his players in and out of the line-up, the Redmen pulled further away to their convincing victory.
In his now familiar role, Julius Erving led all scorers with 29 points and also hauled down 17 rebounds many resulting in fast breaks with the end product easy lay-ups for his mates.
Tom McLaughlin furnished himself another solid performance with six points, five rebounds and another tough defensive job holding his opponent to practically nothing statistically.
Once again the backcourt duo of John Betancourt and Mike Pagliara proved themselves to be still the most underrated backcourt in the region. Pagliara had one of his finest games scoring 10 points and assisting on seven other hoops with Betancourt hitting for four points and keeping his adversary on offense out of the action.
In this game every Redman got to see action and it was actually these subs who opened up the final margin. With the chance to play they shot the eyes out of the basket and were fairly tough off the board.
Bob Dempsey, Charlie Peters and Rich Vogeley were the chief culprits in the final undoing of the Gaels. Dempsey had another in a string of fine performances with 8 points and a few crowd raising breaks down the court.
Peters had seven points in 11 minutes and Vogeley was perfect on the night with four for four from the field and two for two from the foul stripe for ten points.
For Iona, Art Wiggins was the standout with 18 points in his 40 minute stint. Harry Hart and Joe Mazzella also hit for double figures with 11 and 12 points respectively.
SET SHOTS – On the evening the Redmen hit 53.2% from the field and 81.3% from the charity stripe… In contrast Iona could hit for only 30% from the floor and 73% from the line. UMass committed only 11 fouls and had a low turnover total of 13… Iona was called on 22 foul violations and the Redmen took advantage of this from the line… Over the past three games the Redmen have held their opponents to an average of about 52 points per game… And don't forget, Tuesday night at the Cage, Boston College comes to do battle with the Redmen… Wednesday night B.C. defeated Rhode Island, 86-80… Be there!
The data above was taken verbatim from The Collegian's recap, but the UMass numbers don't add up. Totaling all the UM players' points comes to 90, but The Collegian's total line says 92. Two points are missing somewhere. Box as appeared in the Collegian: