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January 30, 1992 - Rutgers vs. UMass


UMass Athletics

From the UMass Basketball 1992-93 Media Guide, published by UMass Athletics

UMass bounced back from its loss at Temple and returned home to display both a rejuvenated offense and defense against the defending A-10 regular season champions. The Minutemen increased their 41-23 halftime lead to as many as 26 (69-43) with 9:44 left to play.

Anton Brown returned to the starting lineup after coming off the bench in the previous four as a result of a groin pull and responded with 14 points (2 of 3 3-pointers) and a season high equalling 10 assists. Harper Williams led four UMass starters in double figures with 17, including his career 1,000th. UM forced 21 turnovers, while adding 12 steals (four by Will Herndon) and eight blocked shots. The Minutemen went over the .500 mark in the A-10 (4-3) and would not lose another Conference game.

Boston Globe

UMass rebounds at home
By Michael Vega, Boston Globe Staff, 1/31/1992

AMHERST – After submitting an abnormally passive effort while getting routed at Temple, the University of Massachusetts basketball team returned to Curry Hicks Cage, where abnormal behavior is considered standard, and got things back to a state of normalcy with a 77-66 victory over Rutgers in an Atlantic 10 game last night.

“What I liked about our team was that we beat them to every loose ball and we beat them to the rebounds. We were the aggressors,” said UMass coach John Calipari, whose team (17-4 overall, 5-3 league) rebounded with a rousing effort after the Owls snapped their five-game winning streak, 83-61. “And at Temple, it was the exact opposite. We let them throw us around, punch us, and we did not retaliate.

“Tonight we shot 11 threes as opposed to 24 at Temple, and that's fine,” Calipari added. “But UMass basketball is not 24. A lot is 15, but 24 is outrageous.”

Which summed up the play of Harper Williams. The 6-foot-7-inch junior center scored a game-high 17 points to surpass 1,000 for his career and punctuated his night in the second half with a hustling recovery of a loose ball he saved by making a Curly Neal dribble. Williams, who led UMass with 13 in the first half, reached the milestone with a gritty offensive rebound in heavy traffic with 3:20 remaining that, at first glance, appeared to have been tipped in by teammate Will Herndon (11 points).

“I thought he did, too,” Williams said. “But it was nice to get it, especially here in the Cage.”

After the Scarlet Knights dropped an 89-72 game at Rhode Island on Super Sunday, this was probably the last place they wanted to be. Still, Rutgers (9-8, 2-5) battled the Minutemen to an 11-11 tie before dropping off the torrid transition pace set by an 18-8 UMass run that gave the hosts a 29-18 lead.

“We didn't want to slack off against them, but we did, which is something we have to cut out of our game,” said Williams.

After taking a commanding 41-23 halftime lead, UMass increased it to 26 (69-43) with 9:43 remaining. As Williams cooled his heels on the bench with four personal fouls, freshman Lou Roe scored all 7 of his points in the second half in his duel with Rutgers center Jamaal Phillips (season-high 18 points).

Donnell Lumpkin, who scored 15 of his team-high 19 points in the second half, rallied the Scarlet Knights within 13 (74-61).

“We didn't want to slack off against them, but we did, which is something we have to cut out of our game,” said Williams.

The Minutemen increased the lead to 76-61 on Brown's lane penetration. That prompted the Cage Crazies to begin chanting, “Temple in the Cage, Temple in the Cage,” in a vocal display of their opposition to the suggested move of the Feb. 16 Temple game to Springfield Civic Center.

“My recommendation is that we play the game here,” said Calipari, whose team will first visit St. Bonaventure next Tuesday and host St. Joseph's Feb. 8. “My concern is for the students. I just want to make it as comfortable as I can for them.”

And as uncomfortable as humanly possible for Temple.

Box Score

game19920130_rutgers.txt · Last modified: 2017/10/03 22:18 (external edit)