#2 Massachusetts 75, Temple 61
From The Associated Press, 3/9/1996
Carmelo Travieso scored all of his 21 points on three-pointers as second-ranked Massachusetts wrapped up its fifth straight Atlantic 10 Tournament title with a 75-61 victory over Temple at the Philadelphia Civic Center.
The win guarantees the Minutemen (31-1) one of the top four regional seeds in the NCAA Tournament next week.
Travieso, who was named the tournament's Most Valuable Player, tied a tournament record with seven three-pointers as Massachusetts beat Temple in the final for the fourth straight year.
“This was another terrific win for us,” said Massachusetts coach John Calipari. “Another game where we had to grind it out. We didn't play with the emotion or intensity I would have liked at the beginning, but, you can't have that at that level in every game.”
Massachusetts used a 13-0 run to take control of the game in the second half. Travieso and Edgar Padilla, who had all 11 of his points in the second half, each sank a pair of three-pointers as the Minutemen built a 51-44 advantage with 11:54 to play.
Marc Jackson finished with 24 points and nine rebounds for the Owls (19-12), who will most likely gain an NCAA Tournament berth despite the loss.
“U-Mass is a very talented ballclub,” said Temple coach John Chaney. “They had an answer for everything. You were looking at the best team in the country.”
Jackson scored seven of the Owls' first nine points as Temple went on a 14-3 run to take its first lead at 44-38 with 15:01 left in the second half.
Donta Bright started the run with a three-pointer and Marcus Camby had a slam to cut the deficit to 44-43. Travieso added a three-pointer to regain the lead and Padilla followed with another before Charlton Clarke capped the run with a pair of free throws with 11:54 left.
Levan Alston broke the spurt with a jumper, but Padilla and Travieso sank three-pointers around a basket by Jackson before Tyrone Weeks made a free throw to give Massachusetts a 58-48 bulge.
“I give a lot of credit to (Edgar) Padilla setting me up for good shots,” Travieso said. “I don't even have to look at him on the floor when I'm setting up, because I know he'll get me the ball in good position.”
Camby hit two free throws to give the Minutemen a 62-50 lead and Massachusetts took its largest lead at 73-56 on a free throw by Padilla with 1:21 to play.
Camby grabbed six rebounds and added five blocks and Padilla handed out seven assists for Massachusetts, which beat Temple for the third time this season and 10th time in the last 11 meetings.
Lynard Stewart, William Cunningham and Jason Ivey had eight points apiece for Temple, which shot 9-of-25 (36 per cent) in the second half and 40 per cent (20-of-50) for the game.
“We had a good run, but we didn't maintain it,” Jackson said. “We lost our composure at the wrong time.”
Travieso had 12 points in the first half as Massachusetts built a 35-30 lead at intermission. The Minutemen used and 8-1 run to take a 19-11 lead, but Temple responded with a 7-1 burst to pull to within 20-18 on a three-pointer by Ivey.
High five for UMass
Minutemen claim A-10 crown – again
By Joe Burris, Boston Globe Staff, 3/10/1996
PHILADELPHIA – Winning an NCAA record fifth conference title was a byproduct at best. The University of Massachusetts' primary goal in last night's Atlantic 10 tournament final was to see where it stood before next week's NCAA tournament. The second-ranked Minutemen's 75-61 win over Temple reiterated a point coach John Calipari has tried hammering home all season.
Few teams in the NCAA tournament will have the ability to control their fate as much as the Minutemen: When they play their brand of basketball – intensity, aggressiveness, motion and precision – they can beat anyone in the country. When they don't, they can make things very difficult for themselves.
That was illustrated last night against a team UMass beat by an average of 27 points in their two regular-season meetings. Having watched a 35-30 halftime lead turn to a 44-38 deficit with 14:54 left, the Minutemen (31-1) staged one of their best runs of the season: a 3-minute, 13-0 spurt that gave them a 51-44 lead with 11:54 left. From there, the Minutemen cruised over their scrappy counterparts.
UMass shooting guard Carmelo Travieso had a team-high 21 points, hitting all of his shots (seven) from 3-point range. He was named the tournament's most valuable player. Edgar Padilla had 11 points and 7 assists for UMass, which looked spotty at times – so much that it needed a boost from widebody forward Tyrone Weeks to get going.
After a heated verbal exchange with Calipari after the coach took exception to Weeks' effort, Weeks took some of his frustrations out on the team, demanding that it get going. “He told us to play harder, not to play like a word I can't tell you,” Travieso said. “We just went out and played better defense.”
“Later on he apologized to me,” said Calipari, “but I told him fine. Not only was he mad, but he got the team fired up.”
Calipari was pleased that once again his team overcame adversity, as it had all season. But he added that the Minutemen have to guard against getting in a similar position in the NCAA tournament.
“We can't do that in a game because a team can get a 19-2 run on you and start hitting unbelievable shots,” said Calipari, whose team set a school record for victories. “The thing I told the team is that now we have to play two weekends of great basketball, two great weekends and we're at the Meadowlands the site of the Final Four.”
Calipari admitted despite tying an NCAA record for the most consecutive outright conference championships (five, along with North Carolina State and Kentucky), his team wasn't very motivated. “I tried to make it a pride thing against Temple, but that was like pulling teeth,” he said. “I mean, nothing was at stake.”
“I think I will focus on the winning of five championships 20 years from now. I didn't even mention it in the postgame speech. Right now, our goal is to win the national championship. I'm happy it was a physical game. That will help us prepare for the NCAA tournament.”
Temple coach John Chaney began shaking his head in disgust immediately. At the time, UMass led, 4-0, but it looked as if things were about to get much worse for the Owls. The Minutemen guards frustrated Temple with their perimeter pressure defense and UMass center Marcus Camby denied the Owls inside.
Travieso sank his first 3-point basket to put the Minutemen up, 9-2. He hit another trey to put the Minutemen ahead, 17-8. It appeared they were on their way to an easy win.
But despite being overmatched at both ends Temple kept the Minuteman lead under double digits, and mounted a rally. The Owls cut the lead to 28-27 with 3:36 left in the half. But UMass outscored Temple, 7-3, the rest of the way for a 35-30 halftime lead.
“Right now, we know we have to step things up a little,” said Camby. “We didn't have as strong a showing early as we wanted to. But once we play UMass basketball, there are few teams in the nation that can beat us.”
The first team that will get a crack probably will be seeded 16th. Calipari believes his team will be seeded first. “Where they send us . . . who cares?” he said. “Our job now is to go out and relax a couple of days and prepare for a few games.”
They're a good example
By Joe Burris, Boston Globe Staff, 3/10/1996
PHILADELPHIA – When St. John's forward Felipe Lopez was in high school, he was tabbed as a player other Hispanic youths would someday aspire to follow. Now, many are saying similar things about Massachusetts' Edgar and Giddel Padilla, Carmelo Travieso and Rigoberto Nunez.
UMass spokeswoman Kay Scalan said admissions officials who attend college fair days at high schools in Puerto Rico confirm the UMass players are heroes to students there. In the United States, it's no different. Last Wednesday, the quartet was honored by Philadelphia Latino Partnership Initiative – a group of more than 100 organizations in the city.
“We're honoring these players because they have served as outstanding role models to young Latino boys and girls throughout the community,” said Angel Medina, coordinator for the Latino Initiative. “As Latinos, we are proud of them and their accomplishments and see them as outstanding role models for our youth.”
Edgar Padilla, who grew up in Puerto Rico, said, “It's important for us to give back to the community. We're indebted to the community because a lot of us came from the same situations.
“To take 10 minutes of our time and talk to kids to try to help youngsters makes you feel good. And it probably makes them feel good, too. It's something we like to do when we get the chance.”
The players stressed the importance of education to a packed auditorium at Roberto Clemente Middle School. “They made an unbelievable talk to a group of youngsters, saying, 'Hey, do what you can do; stay in school,' ” said UMass coach John Calipari.
“They said, 'Hey, I was no different than you. Here's what I did. So if you think it's impossible, I did it. And I might not make it as a basketball player, but I'm going to get my degree.' Those kids walked out of there feeling good.”
Nunez, a native of the Dominican Republic, addressed a growing rift in Philadelphia between Puerto Rican and Dominican residents. “We're all Hispanics, and we need to support each other and stick together,” he said to an ovation.
Tomorrow night, the players will be interviewed live on NBC Hispanic News, which will broadcast the show in 28 countries.
UMass was hoping to become only the third team in NCAA history to win five straight outright regular-season and tournament titles. North Carolina State (Southern Conference) and Kentucky (Southeastern Conference) are the others . . . Entering last night's game, Temple had never shot better than 43 percent from the floor against UMass in the Atlantic 10 final . . . Temple set an Atlantic 10 record with 54 rebounds in its semifinal win over Rhode Island . . . Entering last night's contest, UMass was 21-0 away from the Mullins Center this season. The Minutemen played 25 of their last 35 games on the road and are 33-2 in that stretch . . . UMass and Temple entered last night's game tied for most Atlantic 10 tournament titles with four each.
Victors teeming with confidence
By Bob Ryan, Boston Globe Staff, 3/10/1996
PHILADELPHIA – The tournament Most Valuable Player shook his head.
“When we play as a team,” said Carmelo Travieso, “we can be scary. The plays we make, the shots we make, it's just amazing. Really. Some of the things we do even amaze me.”
You don't ordinarily think of UMass as having an explosive basketball team, but one of the charms of this club is its endless breadth. Just when you think the only way they're going to beat you is by doing it by the numbers, they trot out their Kentucky imitation. That's what happened at the Civic Center last night when the Minutemen hit Temple with a 13-0 run that changed an entire ballgame around, making the remaining 12 minutes a perfunctory exercise.
“We're sitting there saying, 'When is it going to happen?' ” said coach John Calipari. “But you've got to understand, what was at stake here? You guys the press talk about a fifth straight conference tournament title, but there really was nothing at stake. About all we could do was try to make it a pride game.”
Only the coach knows if he was indulging in some revisionist history with that statement. Only the coach knows if he would have casually accepted a loss to Temple, a loss that could have, at the worst, cost his team a No. 1 seed in the NCAA tournament and, at the least, resulted in a No. 1-seeded UMass team being shipped out of the East to some Southeastern or Western port of call. Only the coach knows if a loss would have done something to the “Refuse-To-Lose” attitude of his team. All the rest of us know is that with 14:54 remaining the coach was in the midst of a much-needed 20-second timeout trying to rouse a team that had just surrendered 11 unanswered Temple points and that was then staring at a 44-38 deficit, this after grabbing a 35-30 halftime lead.
According to Coach Cal, it was an interesting timeout. It seems that burly sophomore Tyrone Weeks was, shall we say, venting. The kid actually had exchanged words with the coach and had been told not to take it out on his boss just because he was frustrated about dropping rebounds or losing entry passes. Then young Mr. Weeks addressed his teammates, basically telling them, as Travieso put it, “not to play like a word I can't tell you.”
When the Minutemen broke from the huddle, they were ready to play a little basketball. Donta Bright nailed a three from the right wing. Marcus Camby redirected an extremely ill-advised Levan Alston drive, and at the other end Bright sauntered into the lane in his familiar right-to-left way and dropped a pass for Camby, who jammed it home. Travieso took an Edgar Padilla transition feed and deposited the sixth of his seven 3-pointers and suddenly UMass was back on top at 46-44 and now it was John Chaney's turn to call a 20-second timeout.
But Chaney had no Weeks in his huddle. When play resumed, so did the deluge. Bright stole the ball and this time Padilla pulled up and drilled a three and now it was 49-44. Two free throws by freshman Charlton Clarke (who played 11 useful minutes) capped off the explosion at 13-0. It would extend to 20-4 and 35-12, but the core had been a 13-0 run that consumed a tidy 2:35 on the clock.
It was a run that great teams, and great teams only, can make. It featured a kick-start three by a guy who was struggling offensively all night, matching threes by the superb backcourt soulmates and a monster block by the mother eagle guarding her nest. It followed a sluggish stretch in which there was reason to question the team's resolve to play this particular game, and it sent a message to what is still a reasonably skeptical college basketball world that UMass can beat you more ways than any team in the country.
The coach being a coach, Calipari was even able to identify the dark side. “I'm happy to see a spurt like that,” he said, “but the problem is I don't want them thinking it can happen all the time. If we play in the tournament the way we were playing just before the spurt, we'll be down by 15. After the first round, we'll be playing teams who can do that to us.”
Maybe, maybe not. In the NCAA tournament, UMass is not likely to have any motivational problems. If these kids don't realize by now that they are good enough to win the national championship . . . The truth is that while UMass is not invincible, this is a team with the requisite amount of answers to just about any hoop puzzler.
“UMass is a very talented ballclub,” said Chaney, whose team dropped the Atlantic 10 tournament title game to the Minutemen for a frustrating fourth consecutive season. “They had an answer for everything. They were shooting 10 for 17 on threes and those threes were from far out. You were looking at the best team in the country.”
He's right, you know. They aren't the best collection of talent (that honor belonging to Kentucky, as we all know) but they are the best T-E-A-M, and for those 2 minutes 35 seconds they were playing against themselves and against perfection. It is a feeling of exhilaration few athletes will ever know.
Minutemen to enjoy quick timeout
On College Basketball
By Mark Blaudschun, Boston Globe Staff, 3/10/1996
PHILADELPHIA – Somehow it seems fitting that the final phase of the University of Massachusetts' campaign for the national title began here in a building in which history hangs from the place like banners from the rafters.
It was here in the Civic Center, an old-fashioned arena with smells and sounds seldom seen in these days of state-of-the-art facilities, where Harry Truman's campaign for president began with the Democratic National Convention in 1948. And it was here that Wilt Chamberlain began his NBA career.
And it was here last night where UMass carved its own niche in history, winning its fifth consecutive Atlantic 10 championship by rolling over Temple, 75-61.
By winning, the Minutemen undoubtedly earned the top seed in the East Regional and will begin their chase for the national championship in Providence Thursday night, most likely against Colgate.
But those are worries for another day. For at least 24 hours, the Minutemen wanted to enjoy what they had done in what remains one of the more remarkable seasons in college basketball history.
“Thirty-one and 1,” said UMass coach John Calipari. “That's amazing, isn't it? I told the team, 'We've won 31 games and we haven't even played an NCAA tournament game.' It's just unbelievable to me.”
Such is the nature of the business of college basketball these days that anything less than a 37-1 record by UMass probably will be regarded as a disappointment.
Beginning tomorrow – Calipari conceded that he still will think about the past for most of today, waiting at least until the Minutemen's opponent is officially announced – UMass will be 0-0, just like 63 other teams who also were successful to varying degrees during the regular season.
“We've got three weekends left,” said Calipari, taking the optimstic route in what will be a single-elimination process from now on. “We play a tournament each weekend, hopefully ending up in the Meadowlands in April.”
While the Minutemen will not be the favorite to win – that role will be filled by Kentucky – they should and will be one of the favorites to contend.
Forget the struggles of the past few weeks. Forget the tired looks on some of the players' faces. All of that is part of “last” season. UMass' credentials are as good, if not better, than anyone's.
They already have beaten mighty Kentucky. They beat Georgia Tech, the best team in the ACC. They beat Memphis, one of the best teams in Conference USA. They beat Wake Forest, the second-best team in the ACC. They beat Syracuse and Boston College from the Big East.
There shouldn't be any doubts about how good they are. As Calipari said, “This team has met every challenge presented to it.”
Last night was a case in point. The Minutemen already had beaten Temple twice. They already had clinched a No. 1 seed. “What was at stake here?” said Calipari, knowing it was nothing, really, other than playing for the right to stay in the East in the NCAA tournament, which isn't all that big a deal for the Minutemen. “You can't be 'up' every game. It was tough finding a way to challenge these guys tonight.”
That was part of the reason the Minutemen suddenly found themselves trailing by 6 with 14:54 left in the game. Before you could say NCAA, they had regrouped, put together a remarkable 13-0 spurt, and were well on their way to becoming only the second team in NCAA history to win outright five straight conference and tournament titles, matching North Carolina State.
(UMassHoops.com notes: UMass was the third team to do this. Kentucky in the Southeastern Conference from 1943-44 through 1949-50, and NC State in the Southern Conference from 1946-47 through 1950-51, were the others. Subsequently, Gonzaga set a new mark with six consecutive regular season and conference tournament titles, from the 2012-13 through 2017-18 seasons.)
Calipari said that didn't mean a whole lot to him last night. “Maybe in 20 years,” he said with a smile.
But maybe that was stretching the truth just a bit. Five years ago, UMass was seeking better facilities, players and more respect.
This morning the Minutemen have all of that. And that is indeed something to marvel at.
Playing time? They earn it
By Bob Ryan, Boston Globe Staff, 3/10/1996
PHILADELPHIA – Somewhere out there are better players than those John Calipari has, but he wouldn't have many of them and they wouldn't have him.
“I've got a team that's at ease with itself,” he says.
He's also got a first seven who share a common UMass background. Among the 305 Division 1 teams are many schools who routinely recruit marquee players, slobber all over them, anoint them as little kings from the first moment they set foot on campus – schools that live to regret it. At UMass there are no kings, little or otherwise, and that includes future NBA millionaire Marcus Camby.
The core of the UMass team consists of seven players who have paid – or are currently paying – their dues. None were promised starting jobs when they were recruited. None were promised X amount of minutes. None were promised anything other than a chance to compete for a national title by doing it Coach Cal's way.
“When I recruit a player, I never promise he's going to start, because if it winds up that he doesn't start then you've begun your relationship on a lie,” says Calipari. “But five freshmen have started games for me in the eight years I've been here, so I can say, 'If you're good enough . . .”
Marcus Camby was obviously a phenom as a freshman. He played 22 minutes a game, and only one minute more per game as a sophomore. Donta Bright played 25 as a sophomore (he was academically ineligible to play as a freshman) and four minutes fewer last year, when he was mostly the sixth man. Dana Dingle broke in with 18 minutes a game.
The backcourt is an even better story. Edgar Padilla played 15 minutes a game as a freshman. Carmelo Travieso played a paltry 6 minutes a game, almost all of it mop-up stuff. They now average 36 minutes a game apiece.
“When players come here,” submits Calipari, “we tell them they have to earn a starting spot and earn minutes. As you go through life, the things you earn are the most precious, not the things that are given to you. Some guys buy into that, some don't.”
Coach Cal outlines the career path for each of his first seven:
1. MARCUS CAMBY
“What we said to him as a freshman was, 'The only thing we need from you is defense and rebounding. Just let your scoring happen. There is no need for you to be The Man.' It was Lou Roe's team, and he understood that. He played 20 minutes a game. I wish he could have played 25, but he wasn't able to. He had no idea what true conditioning was.”
2. DONTA BRIGHT
“He had to sit out the first year, and that's hard. You try to keep them involved, but they're just not really a part of it. Donta played on a great high school team Keith Booth, Michael Lloyd, but he was a center and had to learn to play out on the floor. He actually played less as a junior, and I remember former Navy and Pitt coach Paul Evans saying, 'How did you ever convince Donta Bright to be a sixth man?' Remember, you're talking about a highly publicized high school player, the only one we've ever had who played in the McDonald's All-American Game.”
3. DANA DINGLE
“He wasn't recruited by either the ACC or the Big East, but we liked him because he was a warrior. He also came here knowing that we had recruited Donta, another player at what appeared to be his position. He could always defend, and now he's blossoming as an all-around player. We told him that if he wanted his game to jump out he'd have to expand his ballhandling and shooting skills, and he's done that.”
4. EDGAR PADILLA
“He knew coming in he would be behind Derek Kellogg and Michael Williams. He was wild. It was one assist and three turnovers. Guys along press row would put their hands up to protect themselves when he had the ball. It would be three crazy shots and two charges. There was just no definition to his game. It was all a matter of settling down.”
5. CARMELO TRAVIESO
“He had it the toughest, because I like kids that play defense and who are tough mentally. His first year, he couldn't defend anybody. I called him into the office at the end of his freshman year and said, 'Carmelo, I love you. But if you don't get stronger and tougher, you can't play here and you'd probably be better off leaving.' You see what's happened. There may not be a better perimeter defender in the country.”
6. TYRONE WEEKS
“Another kid who had to sit out the first year, and whose career has been complicated by injury. He was a big scorer in the Philly Public League because he was bigger and stronger than anyone. Injuries have set him back, but I'm excited for him because this summer will be the first one where he can work on his game, rather than spend it in a cast or rehabilitating. But the most important thing with Ty is that he came from a very tough area, and when he looked out the window his world was very bleak. Now he's a smiling kid and he can even see a world for himself without basketball. That's the most important thing.”
7. INUS NORVILLE
“I've always liked his size and athleticism. The hardest thing for him has not been to buy into our system, but to get a true feel for the game. He started to show that on Friday against George Washington. You can't be out there thinking the game; you've got to feel it, and he's just starting to get it.”
UMass is not the deepest or most talented team in the country, but UMass is the dictionary definition of a T-E-A-M, which includes subs like Rigoberto Nunez, who may play on occasion, and Ross Burns or Giddel Padilla, who aren't going to play unless it's over, one way or the other. Even those players know they've got to earn that uniform.
“Programs who tell kids they'll start, or play 30 minutes a game, are programs where the players don't get better,” maintains Calipari. “That's a bad life skill to teach, and we're trying to teach life skills.”
Winning the NCAA title on the side wouldn't make Coach Cal unhappy, either.
UMass claims 5th straight title, dismantles Colonials and Owls
By Justin C. Smith, The Massachusetts Daily Collegian Staff, March 11, 1996
PHILADELPHIA, Pa. - For the fifth straight year the Minutemen put their stamp on the Atlantic 10 Tournament by downing the Temple Owls in the final, 75-61, Sat. at the Philadelphia Civic Center.
“This is our tournament,” Marcus Camby said after he and his Massachusetts basketball team won their quarterfinal game against St. Bonaventure. “And we came down to claim our territory.”
Most Outstanding Player of the Tournament Carmelo Travieso lit up John Chaney’s patented match-up zone defense to the tune of seven treys for a team high 21 points. In the three games against Temple this year, Travieso hit 19-of-35 from behind the three-point arc.
“I give a lot of credit to Edgar Padilla,” Travieso said of his starting backcourt mate. “[He’s always] setting me up for good shots. I don’t even have to look at him on the floor when I’m setting up, because I know he’ll give the ball in good position.”
Also selected to the All-Tournament team with the UMass junior guard was teammate Marcus Camby, Temple’s Marc Jackson, George Washington’s Alexander Koul, and Rhode Island’s Tyson Wheeler.
At first, UMass looked like it would have an easy time taking home its fifth straight A-10 Tourney title as Donta Bright hit two quick jumpers just 2:30 into the game to lead 9-2. But Temple, playing tired as three starters played all 40 minutes of their semifinal the previous night, would not roll over.
Jackson was a force down on the blocks, scoring a game high 24 points to go with nine rebounds and a brand new William Cunningham, with a first ever double-double against Rhode Island, was a spark off of the Owl bench with seven points and six boards.
“I thought he played great,” UMass coach John Calipari said. “He made some shots and rebounded well. On the defensive end he made plays just by being around the ball. I’m really happy for him.”
Temple made their big run early on in the second half. Trailing 38-33 with a little over 18 minutes left, the Owls forced UMass into three of their 11 turnovers and Lynard Stewart hit for five points as Temple took their first lead with an 11-0 run.
After a Stewart trey from the right corner boosted the Owl lead to 44-38, Calipari called for a timeout and exchanged pleasantries with Tyrone Weeks. Though Weeks did not come out on the floor after the break, the Minutemen used the incident as a catalyst and took off on a streak of their own.
The Minutemen hit a barrage of three pointers, hitting five-of-five from downtown to take the wind out of Temple’s sails with a 24-6 run to give UMass a 62-50 lead with 5:50 to play. The team pointed to that 20-second timeout as the turning point of the game.
“Tyrone and I had words in the huddle,” Calipari said of what happened during the TO before UMass’ game clinching run. “I just told him not to get mad at me if he was frustrated with himself. At that point everyone picked up their intensity level.
“Tyrone came over to me 20 seconds later and said ‘coach I’m sorry.’ I told him I was fine. He’s a great kid.”
Temple coach John Chaney felt fortunate about the success they have had over the course of the season.
“We were fortunate to get in front. Our weaknesses overwhelmed us,” Chaney said. “We don’t have the talent in the backcourt, we don’t have guards. UMass has a very talented ball club and they had an answer for everything. They were shooting 10-for-17 on their threes and those threes were from everywhere.
“We tricked [everyone]. There’s no way one guard should be 19-12,” said Chaney.
Camby, who had averaged only seven points in his previous two A-10 finals, only took eight shots from the field hitting on four of them as he finished with 12 points on the night. Padilla was impressive once again, taking all three of his shots from three point land, hitting two while dishing out seven assists while committing only one turnover.
UMass trailed 54-53 with just over eight minutes to play when the Minutemen took control using a 13-1 run, capped by a Donta Bright trey with two minutes remaining.
Marcus Camby and Bright both hit for 19 as UMass broke its four game losing streak against GW in their win in the Atlantic 10 semifinals.
The UMass win in the finals raises its record on the season to 31-1. The 31 wins are a program best. The most wins in one campaign for the Minutemen prior to this year was their 30 win, Sweet Sixteen season in 1992.
With the tournament title, UMass becomes only the second team in college basketball to win five straight conference and tournament titles outright. North Carolina State duplicated the feat in the Southland Conference from 1947-51.
(UMassHoops.com note: This omits the fact that Kentucky also accomplished this feat, in the Southeastern Conference from 1943-44 through 1949-50.)
The five tournament titles is also a Conference best overall, as Temple is next in the Atlantic 10 with four. UMass has won 15 straight A-10 Tourney games, as this is the second consecutive Minutemen graduating class to never have lost a game in the conference tourney.
TEMPLE (61) fg ft rb min m-a m-a o-t a pf tp Stewart 35 2-6 3-4 4-5 2 1 8 Jackson 39 9-16 5-6 5-9 1 3 24 Cunningham 21 4-8 0-0 2-7 1 4 8 Alston 35 1-5 2-4 0-1 0 4 4 Futch 18 1-2 0-0 0-2 0 0 3 Battie 13 0-5 1-2 0-1 0 1 1 Ivey 26 2-5 3-4 2-4 1 1 8 Adams 9 0-0 2-3 0-0 0 3 2 Rios 1 0-1 0-0 0-0 1 0 0 Laws 1 0-0 1-2 1-2 0 0 1 Reid 1 1-1 0-1 0-0 0 0 2 Van Velsen 1 0-1 0-0 0-0 0 0 0 _______________________________________________ TOTALS 200 20-50 17-26 14-31 6 17 61 _______________________________________________ Percentages: FG-.400, FT-.654. 3-Point Goals: 4-12, .333 (Stewart 1-4, Jackson 1-1, Alston 0-3, Futch 1-1, Ivey 1-2, Rios 0-1). Team rebounds: 4. Blocked shots: 1 (Ivey). Turnovers: 15 (Battie 3, Cunningham 3, Adams 2, Futch 2, Jackson 2, Alston, Ivey, Laws). Steals: 8 (Stewart 4, Jackson 2, Adams, Alston). MASSACHUSETTS (75) fg ft rb min m-a m-a o-t a pf tp Dingle 34 4-5 1-2 2-5 2 2 9 Bright 24 4-15 0-0 3-4 5 3 9 Camby 34 4-8 4-6 3-6 0 2 12 E Padilla 35 2-3 5-6 1-3 7 4 11 Travieso 33 7-13 0-0 0-3 2 2 21 Weeks 18 3-7 3-4 2-3 0 0 9 Norville 4 0-0 0-0 0-0 0 1 0 Clarke 11 0-1 2-3 0-1 1 0 2 Nunez 3 1-1 0-0 0-0 0 1 2 Cottrell 1 0-1 0-0 0-0 0 0 0 G Padilla 1 0-0 0-0 0-2 0 3 0 Burns 1 0-0 0-0 0-0 1 0 0 Maclay 1 0-0 0-0 0-0 0 0 0 _______________________________________________ TOTALS 200 25-54 15-21 11-27 18 18 75 _______________________________________________ Percentages: FG-.463, FT-.714. 3-Point Goals: 10-17, .588 (Bright 1-1, E Padilla 2-3, Travieso 7-13). Team rebounds: 5. Blocked shots: 5 (Camby 5). Turnovers: 11 (Dingle 3, Travieso 3, Weeks 2, Bright, E Padilla, G Padilla). Steals: 12 (E Padilla 4, Bright 3, Camby 3, Clarke, Dingle). Temple 30 31 - 61 Massachusetts 35 40 - 75 Technical fouls: None. A: 8,727. Officials:Larry Lembo, Gene Monge, Jerry Donaghy.