Late Comeback Falls Short As UMass Downed By St. Bona, 70-69
Jan. 20, 2010
AMHERST, Mass. - After a game that featured eight lead changes and eight ties, a Freddie Riley 3-point attempt at the buzzer missed the mark as UMass fell to St. Bonaventure, 70-69, on Wednesday night at the Mullins Center. The Minutemen came back from a 10-point deficit with four minutes to go. Ricky Harris led the Minutemen with 22 points, while Anthony Gurley and Riley added 16 and 12, respectively. The Minutemen fell to 7-11 overall and 1-4 in A-10 play, while the Bonnies improved to 9-8 overall and 2-2 in conference.
Andrew Nicholson led all scorers with 24 points for the Bonnies on 10-of-18 shooting, including 6-of-6 from the foul line. Michael Davenport had a double-double for St. Bonaventure with 16 points and 10 rebounds.
The Minutemen trailed by seven, 68-61, with four minutes left but a Riley 3-pointer, a Harris layup, and a Harris dunk off a miss following a David Gibbs steal, tied the game up at 68-68 with 2:38 to go. After Nicholson sank two free throws for St. Bonaventure and Gurley made 1-of-2 at the line for UMass, the Minutemen had possession of the ball with a minute to go.
Following a long possession, a Riley 3-pointer from the top of the key was off the mark, giving the Bonnies the ball with 41 seconds to go. After Bonnies miss, the Minutemen came away with the rebound with 10 seconds to go, working the ball up the floor before Riley took a pass on the deep right wing for the attempt at the buzzer.
UMass shot 41.5 percent (27-65) from the field, including 4-for-24 from 3-point range, while St. Bona shot 48.2 percent (27-56) and was 1-for-10 from behind the arc. The Bonnies held the edge on the boards, 40-32.
Both teams' offenses got off to slow starts, combining for just six points, a 4-2 Bonnies lead, at the first media timeout with 15:42 left in the half. As the offenses warmed up, the two clubs went back and forth for the duration of the half with eight lead changes and six ties. The Minutemen took a four-point lead, their biggest of the half, 25-21, on a Riley jumper with 4:41 left. The Bonnies then went on a 9-2 run over the final four minutes to take a 30-27 lead into halftime.
Nicholson led all scorers in the opening 20 minutes with 15 points to go with five rebounds and four blocks. UMass was led by eight points from Harris, while Riley added seven. St. Bona held a slight edge in shooting, 39.3 percent (11-28) to 36.7 percent (11-30). The Bonnies turned the ball over 10 times in the first half to UMass' five, but a 21-15 rebounding advantage evened things out for the road team.
A Harris 3-pointer just over a minute into the second half tied the game at 32-32, but the Bonnies, led by six points from Davenport, outscored the Minutemen, 13-6, over the next five minutes to open up a seven-point lead, 45-38, with 14 minutes to go. The St. Bona lead reached double-digits, 57-47, at the midway point of the second half on a Davenport runner in the lane.
UMass responded by scoring seven-straight points, finished off by a Harris 3-pointer, to pull within three, 57-54, with 9:08 to go.
The Minutemen travel to Waco, Texas for their final non-conference game of the season on Saturday when they take on No. 25 Baylor at 4 p.m. ET on ESPNU.
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