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January 5, 2012 - Fordham vs. UMass


UMass Athletics

Daily Hampshire Gazette

Short-handed UMass men's basketball faces upstart Fordham in A-10 opener
By Matt Vautour, Daily Hampshire Gazette, 1/5/2012

AMHERST - University of Massachusetts men's basketball freshman big man Cady Lalanne will be sidelined for four to six weeks following a foot injury he suffered late in Friday's win over Central Connecticut.

“He's going to be out for an extended period of time,” UMass coach Derek Kellogg said. “I think he refractured his foot.”

That time frame will cost him at least half of UMass' Atlantic 10 season. Kellogg said Lalanne opted against season-ending surgery.

“He's not going to do surgery. It's going to have to heal on its own to see if it can heal a little quicker,” Kellogg said. “We're going to give it a prayer and hope he comes back healthy. It's disappointing for Cady, who doesn't deserve this. He's a nice kid and works hard on and off the floor. He was just starting to figure the college game out. He was really settling into his role. It's going to be a blow. Other guys are going to have to step up and pick up some of the slack..”

Fellow freshman Maxie Esho, senior Matt Hill and redshirt freshman walk-on Andrew McCarthy are expected to see increased minutes in Lalanne's absence. Hill is currently sidelined with a knee sprain. He likely won't play tonight against Fordham, but could potentially play Sunday at La Salle.

Lalanne, who missed preseason training with a broken foot, was averaging 6.7 points and 5.6 rebounds in 14.9 minutes per game.

Kellogg will begin sorting out a rotation without Lalanne when the Minutemen (11-3) tip off against the Rams (7-6) at the Mullins Center at 7 p.m.

The Rams, who have won three straight, look like a tougher opponent now than they would have been in December. After beating Texas State, Fordham upended Georgia Tech 72-66 then followed that up with a 60-54 upset of No. 21 Harvard on Tuesday. All three victories were at home.

Even without those wins, the Minutemen weren't likely to look past Fordham. Last year, for the final regular season game they went to the Bronx to face a Rams team that was on a 17-game losing streak and was 0-15 in the Atlantic 10.

But Fordham stunned UMass 77-73 setting up a disastrous end to the Minuteman season.

“With (Chris) Gaston, they have a guy that can dominate the game. Their guards are young but they're New York City kids who know how to play,” Kellogg said. “They have a better feel for their blueprint as a team and a program.”

Gaston is a junior forward and if the Rams continue to play well, he could be a player of the year candidate in the Atlantic 10. He is fifth in the conference in scoring at 16.8 points per game and leads the A-10 in rebounding at 11.2 per game.

Fordham will have a quick turnaround following Tuesday's win over Harvard.

“It's similar to playing an NBA schedule,” said Fordham coach Tom Pecora, who coached UMass point guard Chaz Williams when they were both at Hofstra. Pecora's departure from Hofstra to Fordham was a big reason Williams transferred. Both the player and coach still held each other in high regard.

“He was a great coach and a great guy. We left on good terms. It would be a great experience to play in front of a guy I once played for,” Williams said. “I'll probably talk to him after the game. I'm not really a proponent of talking to opponents before the game.”

Williams is one of two former Hofstra players who Pecora will face in the Atlantic 10. Saint Joseph's Halil Kanacevic was also on the Pride before Pecora left.

“I thought they'd both end up in the Big East, but now we have to play them in the Atlantic 10,” Pecora said. “They're both wonderful kids. I wish them the best every night except when they're playing Fordham.”

Matt Vautour can be reached at [email protected]. Follow UMass coverage on Twitter at Get UMass coverage delivered in your Facebook news feed at

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Game Thread

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UMass Athletics

UMass Claims A-10 Opener 80-76 Over Fordham
Raphiael Putney and Terrell Vinson both recorded double-doubles.
From UMass Athletics, 1/5/2012

AMHERST, Mass. - The UMass men's basketball team pulled out a hard-fought 80-76 win over Fordham extending its win streak to six straight games and starting the Atlantic 10 season with a win at the Mullins Center on Thursday night. The Minutemen had a balanced scoring offense with five players in double figures with Chaz Williams leading the team with 20 points. The win improves UMass to 12-3 overall and 1-0 in the A-10, while Fordham falls to 7-7 overall, 0-1 in the league.

Raphiael Putney recorded his first career double-double, ending the game with 10 points and 10 rebounds, while Terrell Vinson also recorded a double-double, his third of the season and sixth of his career, scoring 14 points and grabbing a career high 14 rebounds.

Freddie Riley tallied 13 points in just 18 minutes of play off the bench. Jesse Morgan was also a key contributor with 12 points and two steals.

Fordham's Chris Gaston and Kervin Bristol each had double-doubles to lead the Rams. Gaston had 16 points and 18 rebounds, while Bristol posted 11 points and 12 rebounds. Branden Frazier led Fordham with 19 points, while Bryan Smith rounded out the top scorers with 14.

The Minutemen went five of eight from beyond the arc in the first seven minutes of the second half, starting with two from Williams and ending with two from Vinson. UMass went on a 14-0 run in the middle of the half, but Fordham battled back to within four on a 14-6 run. The rest of the half stayed close, with Fordham taking the Minuteman lead down to one with 17 seconds left in the game. Free throw shooting decided the game, with Williams hitting three, and Lamount Samuell of Fordham missing his two attempts.

The Minutemen struggled to put together an offense in the first half, but managed to end it with the lead (33-32) off of a 7-1 run in the last three minutes, punctuated by a Putney alley-oop dunk with 14 seconds left. Riley led the team in points in the half with eight, hitting two of six from beyond the arc. Putney was key on defense, grabbing six defensive boards.

Fordham's shooting percentages were better in all categories, with the biggest differential coming at the line where the Rams shot 70 percent and UMass shot 59.5 percent. The Minutemen ended the night shooting 37.3 percent from the field.

The Minutemen will face La Salle next on Sunday, January 8 at 2 p.m. The game will be televised regionally on Comcast SportsNet New England.


  • The Minutemen (12-3, 1-0) are riding a six-game winning streak and remain a perfect 8-0 at home.
  • Raphiel Putney recorded his first career double-double, finishing with 10 points and a career high 10 rebounds. He also tied his career high blocks with three.
  • Terrell Vinson picked up his third double-double this season finishing the game with 14 points and a career high 14 rebounds. It is the sixth double-double of his career.
  • The last time the Minutemen had two players with double-doubles was in 2008 when Chris Lowe (14 points, 10 rebounds, 14 assists) and Gary Forbes (26 points, 11 rebounds) each posted one against La Salle.
  • Chaz Williams tallied 20 points. It is his eighth game in a row scoring in double-figures. His fourth game this season with at least 20 points.
  • Freddie Riley finished the game with 13 points. It is his seventh game in double-figures this season.
  • Jesse Morgan has now scored in double figures six times this season, finishing the game with 12 points.
  • The Minutemen had five players in double-figures for the third game in a row, Williams (20), Putney (10), Morgan (12), Vinson (14), Riley (13).
  • With their 37 free throw attempts the Minutemen have eclipsed their previous season high of 36 coming in the season opener against Elon.

Daily Hampshire Gazette

Chaz Williams preserves win for UMass in Atlantic 10 opener over Fordham
By Matt Vautour, Daily Hampshire Gazette, 1/6/2012

AMHERST - After missing two free throws that would have stretched the University of Massachusetts men's basketball team's lead from one point to three with 12 seconds left, sophomore point guard Chaz Williams was hell-bent on redeeming himself.

The 5-foot-9 guard leaped into a crowd of taller players and came away with the rebound off his second missed free throw. Fouled again, Williams made both shots from the line and saved the Minutemen's 80-76 win over Fordham on Thursday at the Mullins Center.

“I felt like I almost gave the game away, after missing the first two. I felt like I almost blew the game, missing the first two, so I wanted to use the best of my abilities to get the rebound after the second miss. After I got it, my teammates just told me they had faith in me and a lot of confidence to make them,” Williams said. “I don't know. I just wanted to get that ball. It don't matter if there's a freight train in my way, I'd try to run it over to get the ball.”

Trailing 79-76 after Williams' two free throws, Fordham had a chance at a game-tying 3-pointer, but Williams fouled Lamount Samuell at the other end with 5.8 seconds left. The Fordham guard missed the first free throw and then intentionally tried to miss the second in hopes of getting the rebound, but it missed the rim and UMass got the ball back on the violation. Williams was fouled again and made one of two free throws to clinch the victory.

UMass (12-3, 1-0 Atlantic 10) heads to Philadelphia for a 2 p.m. game against La Salle Sunday. Fordham fell to 7-7, 0-1 A-10.

“I thought that was a pretty good hard-fought game against a team that's an up-and-coming team. They played St. John's really tough. They knocked off Georgia Tech at home the other night. They beat Harvard and were coming here as a very confident ball club,” UMass coach Derek Kellogg said. “I would kind of call that a hang-on win tonight, one that we kind of fought to the end, finally made a couple free throws, and put a good Fordham team away.”

A 14-0 run appeared to give UMass a comfortable edge at 58-44 with 12:32 left in the game. But unlike many Minuteman opponents this season, the Rams didn't fold. They scored seven straight to keep their deficit within single digits.

The margin hovered just above and just below 10 for most of the half, but another 7-0 run by Fordham cut UMass' lead from 11 to four, giving the Rams momentum.

Following a missed 3-pointer by Williams, Brendan Frazier walked the ball up the floor with a chance to cut into the deficit. But when Frazier threw a lazy pass toward Samuell, Jesse Morgan alertly darted in and stole it. He put home an athletic layup as Samuell fouled him. Morgan made the free throw to put UMass ahead 74-67 with 2:48 left.

“To have Jesse come up with that steal was the play of the game, in my opinion,” Kellogg said. “I think they cut it to four, and to have him get that and-one and make that play gave us a little cushion.”

The Minutemen needed all the cushion they could get as Fordham used a 6-1 run in the final two minutes to set up Williams' eventful finish.

Williams shot 6-for-20 from the floor, but finished with 20 points, eight assists and seven rebounds. Terrell Vinson led the Minutemen in the second half as 11 of his 14 points and 11 of his career-high 14 rebounds came after intermission. Vinson also helped contain Fordham junior Chris Gaston, who struggled to reach 16 points and shot 7-of-16.

“TV's done a very good job. Usually he's taking on the other team's best player, at least their best frontcourt player the majority of our games since even into last year, and he's done a pretty good job,” Kellogg said. “It was nice to see him play physical, play tough.”

Five different Minutemen scored in double figures. Raphiael Putney had 10 rebounds to go with his 10 points and a tomahawk dunk that earned an ovation from the Mullins Center crowd. Freddie Riley added 13 points, while Morgan had 12.

Matt Vautour can be reached at [email protected]. Follow UMass coverage on Twitter at Get UMass coverage delivered in your Facebook news feed at

Small lineup produces good results for Minutemen in victory over Fordham
By Matt Vautour, Daily Hampshire Gazette, 1/6/2012

AMHERST - Against a Fordham lineup that didn't feature much size, University of Massachusetts men's basketball coach Derek Kellogg used a smaller lineup for much of the game to counteract the loss of injured freshman center Cady Lalanne.

The strategy worked as UMass won 80-76 Thursday at the Mullins Center.

Senior center Sean Carter, who had two first-half fouls, played 14 minutes in the second half before fouling out. Kellogg often used freshman Maxie Esho and sophomore Raphiael Putney inside in the back of the 3-2 zone.

Kellogg said he didn't feel comfortable playing without a center.

“It was out of necessity. I usually like to have one bigger guy in there to move around Sean and then Cady was that second guy. We tried a couple different things. I even played a little zone in the first half. I'll get more comfortable, there aren't a lot of other options. I'm going to have to get comfortable quickly,” Kellogg said. “I thought they played great in the zone. For not working on it a ton and for not being a zone coach, I think they did a good job.”

Lalanne is expected to miss four to six weeks.

FREE THROW WOES - The Minutemen won despite a rough night at the free throw line. UMass shot 22-for-37, including 14-for-24 in the second half.

“I hadn't really looked at it much until after this game, so we'll take a peek at it. Definitely, we'll work on it in practice. We have time now, with no class, to get in here and shoot some free throws and then also practice in the afternoon, so that could be something to work on,” Kellogg said. “Because obviously we're going to be in a lot of tight games and it's nice when you can put teams away by making free throws.”

Normally reliable from the line, sophomore point guard Chaz Williams was 5-for-10.

“It's just me, getting in the gym and working on other things in my game,” Williams said. “I did have somewhat of a good free-throw percentage, and I could say that I personally took away from shooting free throws in practice. I'm just going to pretty much blame it on myself and get back in the gym and work on my free throws.”

NEXT UP - UMass heads to Philadelphia to play La Salle at 2 p.m. Sunday at Tom Gola Arena, a place the Minutemen haven't had much success in recent years. The Explorers are 11-4 and 1-0 in the Atlantic 10 after upsetting Xavier 80-70 on Wednesday.

South Carolina transfer Ramon Galloway leads La Salle with 15.3 points per game.

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Box Score

Gaston, ChrisF37716.43801.00024.5004141830232116
Bristol, KervinF2557.7140012.500481220011011
Frazier, BrandenC39615.40034.750441.00013400450019
McMillan, DevonG1714.25000001015133002
Smith, BryanG35414.28638.375331.00000051221114
Zivkovic, Luka0:110000000000000000
Samuell, Lamount1412.5000047.5711014031006
Estwick, Alberto1413.33302.000000335101012
Dominique, Marvin913.33300000221000012
Canty, Ryan1023.66700003141001104
First half1338.34227.28646.667 32
Second half1529.51748.5001014.714 44
Points in the paint34
Points off turnovers13
Second chance points13
Fast break points7
Vinson, TerrellF34410.40024.50047.5714101430312014
Putney, RaphiaelF2947.57102.00024.500281020113110
Carter, SeanC2513.3330024.5003365112104
Williams, ChazG37620.30037.429510.50043740830220
Morgan, JesseG24312.25004.00068.75010100100212
Farrell, Javorn2136.50012.500002132022027
Esho, Maxie120000000222000010
Riley, Freddie1849.44427.28634.75000000000013
First half1135.314314.214813.615 33
Second half1432.438512.4171424.583 47
Points in the paint30
Points off turnovers19
Second chance points13
Fast break points6
Score by Periods1st2ndOT1OT2OT3Final
FORDHAM3244 76
OfficialsBryan Kersey, Lamar Simpson, Gary Pucino
Technical FoulsFordham-GASTON

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