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November 30, 2011 - Towson vs. UMass


UMass Athletics

Daily Hampshire Gazette

UMass men's basketball returns home after loss to face winless Towson
By Matt Vautour, Daily Hampshire Gazette, 11/30/2011

AMHERST - After suffering a disappointing loss to the College of Charleston to end the Battle 4 Atlantis Saturday night, the University of Massachusetts men's basketball team was eager to get back on the court.

The Minutemen (5-2) will host Towson (0-5) tonight at 7 at the Mullins Center.

“We can't let it affect the way we play,” sophomore point guard Chaz Williams said. “We're ready for war again at this point. We're ready to redeem ourselves and play.”

Junior Javorn Farrell agreed.

“We all have a sense of urgency and want to keep this thing going in the right direction. We have a team who's not really that good that we want to make a statement against,” Farrell said. “Against NJIT, we let them get confidence early and they stuck around. Against a team like that we have to put them away early. That's the game plan for tomorrow.”

As he headed out to Tuesday's practice, UMass coach Derek Kellogg wanted to work on his team's half-court defense that allowed too many open shots and easy drives for Charleston and was interested to see how his team would handle its first frustration of the season.

“I'm not naive to think there's not going to be some adversity. This will be a good test for us to get a good gauge on where our team is,” said Kellogg, whose team played three games in three days in the Battle 4 Atlantis. “We haven't had a chance to really practice to improve on a lot of things basketball-wise. Our half-court defense needs to shore up a little bit. From the press we have to make sure we get back and build our defense out. We gave (Charleston) way too many straight drives. We never really set our defense and it opened up too many driving lanes.”

Towson arrives winless, but those five losses have come against a difficult slate. After being blown out by No. 13 Kansas (100-54) to open the season, the Tigers hung with Michigan (64-47) for most of the game.

They lost back-to-back games to Belmont (87-41) and UNC-Greensboro (72-60) in a tournament in Murfreesboro, Tenn. Their most recent loss was a memorable one, not because of what happened on the court but because of who was in the stands. Towson fell to Oregon State 66-46 in front of President Barack Obama, who annually attends one Beavers game because his brother-in-law, Craig Robinson, is the head coach.

Robert Nwanko, a 6-foot-8 senior big man, and Marcus Damas, a 6-foot-7 sophomore forward, led Towson in scoring with 11.8 points per game each. The duo could present a challenge on the glass for UMass as well. Nwanko averages 8.8 rebounds per game and Damas 6.8.

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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UMass Athletics

Balanced Scoring Effort Gives UMass 86-56 Win Over Towson
The Minutemen stay undefeated at home as a result of strong contributions from the bench.
From UMass Athletics, 11/30/2011

AMHERST, Mass. - A balanced scoring effort paced by four players in double-figures kept the UMass basketball team undefeated at the Mullins Center as the Minutemen defeated Towson 86-56 on Wednesday night. The Minutemen improve to a 6-2 record on the season. Freddie Riley led UMass with 15 points, while Raphiael Putney, Cady Lalanne, and Chaz Williams all hit double-digits as well. The depth of UMass was evident with a total of 51 points coming off the bench.

The Minutemen used 31 field goals, including 13 three-point shots to seal their victory against the Towson Tigers. They shot 43.1 percent overall and 46.4 percent from beyond the ark.

The Minutemen dished out a season-high 23 assists, with 9 coming from Jesse Morgan, a career-high. Williams had 8 assists on the night.

UMass held Towson to 21 field goals including just 2 three-point shots. Robert Nwankwo was the game's leading scorer with 19 points and was the lone Tiger to score in the double-digits.

The Minutemen forced 26 turnovers over the course of the game and scored 37 points off of those turnovers.

Putney led all scorers in the first half with 10 points as UMass tied its season-high for first half points with 44. The outburst was sparked by a 17-4 run over a three minute, 39 second span that started with a Sean Carter alley-oop dunk and finished with a Williams three-pointer at the 6:58 mark.

The Minutemen went on a 12-0 run between 3:49 and 6:02 in the beginning of the second half to pad their lead. With about 12 minutes to go in the game, Matt Hill made his second appearance of the season where he scored six points, tying his career-high. Andrew McCarthy also received some minutes and scored his first points of the season.

UMass will return to action on Saturday at Miami in Coral Gables, Fla. The opening tip-off is set for 1 PM and the game will be televised on ESPNU. It will be the first meeting between the Minutemen and the Hurricanes since 2007 when Miami won 72-71 in the Mullins Center.


  • This was Derek Kellogg's 100th game of his career as head coach of UMass. Kellogg has lead the Minutemen since the 2008-09 season and has posted a 45-55 record in his time at UMass.
  • The Minutemen remain undefeated at home and have a 5-0 record in home games so far this season. This is also the fifth time this season UMass has scored over 80 points in a game.
  • All 11 Minutemen who played in this game scored at least one field goal. Freddie Riley led the team with 15 points. Both Matt Hill and Andrew McCarthy scored their first points of the season this game. Hill ended the game with 6 points, which ties his career-high and McCarthy ended the game with 2.
  • The Minutemen started the game with a 9-0 run, scoring all nine points in the first 2:08 of play. Raphiael Putney scored five of those nine points. Their longest unanswered run happened in the first half where they went on a 14-0 run over the course of three minutes.
  • The UMass defense forced 26 turnovers, and scored 37 points off of those turnovers. Cady Lalanne contributed a career-high 6 blocks and Javorn Farrell, Jesse Morgan, and Chaz Williams all contributed 2 steals to the defensive efforts.
  • With 44 points to end the first half, the Minutemen tied their season high for points scored in the first half. UMass has scored more than 40 points in a half eight times this season, with 46 being the season high.
  • This was the fifth and sixth time this season the Minutemen held a team to under 30 points in a half, with Towson scoring 28 in both the first and second half.
  • Jessie Morgan had a career-high 9 assists on the night and Chaz Williams dished out 8 of his own.

Daily Hampshire Gazette

UMass men's basketball shakes up rotation, crushes Towson by 30
By Matt Vautour, Daily Hampshire Gazette, 12/1/2011

AMHERST - After a tough trip to the Bahamas, University of Massachusetts coach Derek Kellogg shook up his rotation and took guards Freddie Riley and Chaz Williams out of the starting lineup.

The move worked as the duo shined off the bench as UMass crushed Towson 86-56 Wednesday at the Mullins Center.

The Minutemen (6-2) never let the winless Tigers (0-6) get any confidence. They scored the first five points and led 28-9 with 11 minutes, 24 seconds left in the first half. UMass was never threatened.

“Any time you lose big you want to redeem yourself as quickly as you can,” said Riley, who shot 1-for-10 in Saturday's loss to the College of Charleston in the Battle 4 Atlantis finale. “That's what we wanted to do.”

Kellogg said Wednesday's lineup shift wasn't disciplinary. Raphiael Putney and Jesse Morgan started in place of Riley and Williams, respectively.

“I wanted to let them know there was no set lineup. I wasn't happy with the way things went in the Bahamas and I thought shaking it up a little bit would get their attention,” said Kellogg, who wasn't sure how the lineup would look going forward.

Both Williams and Riley checked in 4:38 into the game. Williams, who had eight points and no assists in Saturday's loss, put that game behind him with 12 points, eight assists and two steals against Towson.

Riley, whose shooting has been hot and cold this season, was hot. He made 6-of-8 shots with three 3-pointers and two athletic dunks. He led UMass with 15 points and said he didn't mind coming off the bench.

“I'm comfortable with whatever role coach wants me to play,” Riley said.

Freshman big man Cady Lalanne was the third double-figure scorer off the bench with 11 points to go with nine rebounds and a career-high six blocked shots. His defense early in the second half squelched any chance of a Towson comeback.

Tiger big man Robert Nwankwo kept Towson in the game with 15 points and 11 rebounds before halftime as UMass led 44-28 at the break. He scored four quick points against Sean Carter right away in the second half, causing Kellogg to send Lalanne in. Nwankwo had just one point and three boards the rest of the game as Lalanne neutralized him.

“I wasn't happy with (Lalanne) in the first half, but I thought when we inserted him, we kind of put the game away,” Kellogg said. “He starting to come along slowly. He should be a double-double guy every night.”

Lalanne said he's gaining confidence.

“I feel like I'm getting a lot better,” said Lalanne, who sat out last year as an academic nonqualifier. “Just being back playing basketball and getting back in shape, I feel a lot more comfortable.”

The lead allowed Kellogg to give extended minutes to his bench. Morgan saw time at point guard and responded with nine assists to go with his eight points.

“I thought he did a great job tonight,” Kellogg said. “For us to be good, he's got to get better. He showed some great signs in the Bahamas and I thought he did some good things tonight.”

Senior Matt Hill saw his first extended action of the season and had six points in 13 minutes. Redshirt freshman walk-on center Andrew McCarthy played a career-long six minutes and scored two points, the first of his career, to go with two rebounds. All 11 UMass players who saw action scored. Riley said the regulars wanted to get the reserves extra minutes.

“It's satisfying because we know they don't get to play a lot,” Riley said. “Winning by a lot is important to us because we want them to get game time minutes as well.”

UMass heads south again this weekend for its third game against an ACC team when it plays at Miami at 1 p.m. Saturday.

Towson coach Pat Skerry said he was impressed with the Minutemen.

“I thought UMass was the most athletic team and the deepest team we've played this year,” said Skerry, whose Tigers have played Michigan and Kansas.

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

Sampson Carter misses win with muscle tear
By Matt Vautour, Daily Hampshire Gazette, 12/1/2011

AMHERST - University of Massachusetts junior forward Sampson Carter missed Wednesday's 86-56 victory over Towson with a muscle tear in his hip, an injury coach Derek Kellogg said could require surgery.

“I'm not sure how much he's going to be able to play,” Kellogg said. “When I saw how much pain he was in against Charleston I knew it was time to put him on the shelf.”

UMass lost to the College of Charleston in the Battle 4 Atlantis finale Saturday.

Carter has averaged 8.6 points and 3.9 rebounds off the bench and has been a steady presence for the Minutemen. Kellogg said rest isn't likely to fix the problem.

“You either play through the pain or you have surgery. (Surgery) is a definite possibility,” Kellogg said. “He really wants to play through it, but I'm not sure medically he's going to be able to.”

Carter would still be eligible for a medical redshirt because he hasn't played in 30 percent of UMass' total games. The Minutemen have a 30-game regular season schedule plus the potential for postseason games.

BAYSTATE SUCCESS - A return to the state of Massachusetts gave the Minutemen a lift. UMass (6-2) has won its five games in its home state by an average of 24.5 points.

NEXT UP - The Minutemen head back south to take on Miami, Saturday at 1 p.m. The Hurricanes won their first four games, but lost their last two to Ole Miss and Purdue.

Malcolm Grant leads Miami with 17.5 points per game.

MISCELLANEOUS - UMass got 51 points off the bench. … The Minutemen have scored 40 or more points in a half eight times this season. The 44 points in the first half Wednesday were two short of their season high. UMass led 44-28 at the break. … The game was Derek Kellogg's 100th game as the UMass coach.

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Box Score

Official Basketball Box Score
Towson vs Massachusetts 
11/30/11 7:00 PM at Amherst, Mass. (Mullins Center) 

Visitors: Towson 0-6
                            TOT-FG  3-PT         REBOUNDS 
##  Player Name             FG-FGA FG-FGA FT-FTA OF DE TOT PF  TP  A TO BLK S MIN 
01  Damas, Marcus.......  f  1-9    1-4    0-0    0  6  6   1   3  1  2  0  1  31  
23  Jones, Deon.........  f  4-9    0-1    0-1    1  4  5   4   8  2  5  0  0  28  
25  Nwankwo, Robert.....  f  7-18   0-0    5-12   9  5 14   0  19  1  1  4  0  31  
30  Pressley, Jervon....  f  2-3    0-0    0-0    1  1  2   5   4  0  3  0  0  12  
03  Walden, Kris........  g  2-7    0-3    2-2    0  3  3   4   6  5  7  0  1  26  
04  Cook, Deyon.........     1-3    0-2    0-0    2  2  4   1   2  0  1  0  1   9  
10  Adams, Will.........     2-10   1-5    0-1    1  3  4   0   5  0  1  0  2  24  
11  Collins, Christian..     0-0    0-0    0-0    0  0  0   0   0  1  0  0  0   1  
12  Gumbs, Erique.......     1-4    0-0    5-8    3  4  7   2   7  2  5  1  1  25  
15  Blackstone, Brian...     0-0    0-0    0-0    1  0  1   0   0  0  1  0  0   2  
44  Flash, Jamel........     1-1    0-0    0-0    0  0  0   1   2  1  0  1  0  11  
    TEAM................                          3  1  4  
    Totals..............    21-64   2-15  12-24  21 29 50  18  56 13 26  6  6 200  

TOTAL FG% 1st Half: 11-32 34.4%  2nd Half:  10-32 31.3%  Game: 32.8%
3-Pt. FG% 1st Half:  2-8  25.0%  2nd Half:   0-7   0.0%  Game: 13.3%
F Throw % 1st Half:  4-9  44.4%  2nd Half:   8-15 53.3%  Game: 50.0%  

HOME TEAM: Massachusetts 6-2
                            TOT-FG  3-PT         REBOUNDS 
##  Player Name             FG-FGA FG-FGA FT-FTA OF DE TOT PF  TP  A TO BLK S MIN                
00  FARRELL, Javorn.....  f  1-3    0-1    0-0    1  3  4   2   2  3  2  0  2  15  
33  VINSON, Terrell.....  f  3-8    2-5    1-4    0  2  2   1   9  1  0  0  1  19  
34  PUTNEY, Raphiael....  f  4-8    2-4    0-0    0  4  4   1  10  0  1  2  0  21  
54  CARTER, Sean........  c  2-4    0-0    2-2    2  1  3   3   6  1  0  1  0  12  
05  MORGAN, Jesse.......  g  3-7    2-4    0-0    0  1  1   1   8  9  3  0  2  28  
01  ESHO, Maxie.........     2-9    0-2    1-2    2  7  9   1   5  0  0  3  0  17  
03  WILLIAMS, Chaz......     2-6    2-2    6-8    2  1  3   0  12  8  2  0  2  25  
04  RILEY, Freddie......     6-8    3-5    0-0    0  1  1   1  15  0  0  0  1  16  
10  LALANNE, Cady.......     5-10   1-2    0-0    4  5  9   2  11  0  2  6  0  28  
50  HILL, Matt..........     2-4    1-3    1-2    0  2  2   3   6  1  1  1  1  13  
52  MCCARTHY, Andrew....     1-5    0-0    0-0    2  0  2   4   2  0  0  0  0   6  
    TEAM                                          2  1  3   
    Totals..............    31-72  13-28  11-18  15 28 43  19  86 23 11 13  9 200  

TOTAL FG% 1st Half: 16-37 43.2%  2nd Half:  15-35 42.9%  Game: 43.1%
3-Pt. FG% 1st Half:  6-12 50.0%  2nd Half:   7-16 43.8%  Game: 46.4%
F Throw % 1st Half:  6-8  75.0%  2nd Half:   5-10 50.0%  Game: 61.1%

Officials: Michael Stephens, DJ Carstensen, Matt Lee 
Technical fouls: Towson-None. Massachusetts-None. 
Attendance: 2579
Score by Periods          1st  2nd   Total    
Towson..................   28   28      56  
Massachusetts...........   44   42      86  
Foul on UM #54 S. Carter @ 18:38 was ruled Flagrant/1

Points in the paint...TOWSON 34, UMASS 32
Points off turnovers..TOWSON 13, UMASS 37  
2nd chance points.....TOWSON 18, UMASS 4
Fast break points.....TOWSON  0, UMASS 11  
Bench points..........TOWSON 16, UMASS 51
Score tied............0 times
Lead changed..........0 times.  
Last FG...............TOWSON 2nd-00:18, UMASS 2nd-03:30. 
Largest lead..........TOWSON None, UMASS by 36 2nd-05:42.

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