Men's Basketball

Saint Louis Pulls Away From UMass, 69-56

Harris had 23 points for the Minutemen on Sunday.

Harris had 23 points for the Minutemen on Sunday.

Feb. 21, 2010

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AMHERST, Mass. - Key runs by the visiting team midway through each half were the difference on Sunday afternoon at the Mullins Center as UMass fell to Saint Louis, 69-56. The Billikens used a 13-0 run in the first half and a 12-2 run in the second as they improved to 18-8 overall and 9-3 in the A-10. UMass fell to 10-17 overall and 4-9 in conference play.

Ricky Harris led all scorers with 23 points on 9-for-18 shooting. Terrell Vinson had his highest scoring game since a career-high 21 vs. Memphis on Dc. 19, with 19 while also grabbing eight rebounds. Saint Louis put four scorers in double figures, led by Kyle Cassity with 16 and Cody Ellis with 14.

UMass shot 39 percent for the game, including 18 percent from 3-point range. SLU was 48 percent overall and 39 percent from long range. The Minutemen held a 33-30 edge on the boards.

The game started out a tight affair as the teams traded hoops over the first seven minutes, but with UMass leading, 13-11, the Billikens went on a 13-0 run over the middle portion of the first half to take a 24-13 lead with 9:12 left. SLU shot 10-for-14 up to that point, including three 3-pointers by Ellis, and held the Minutemen scoreless for 5:45.

The Billikens led, 26-15, with under six minutes left in the first half when Harris, who had just two points to that point, took over. The senior guard scored 11 points in a 14-4 UMass run over the final 5:16 to head into halftime down a point, 30-29.

Harris' 13 points led UMass in the first half and Vinson added seven points and five rebounds while the Minutemen shot 41 percent. SLU was led by 11 points from Cassity and nine from Ellis while the team shot 50 percent in the half.

The second half started much like the first, with the teams trading hoops. The Minutemen tied the game twice in the opening four minutes of the half and trailed by one when Saint Louis went on another mid-half run. This time it was a 12-2 run that spanned 4:53 and gave the Billikens a 54-43 lead with nine minutes left in the game.

After the deficit reached 12 on a Cassity 3-pointer with 8:13 left, UMass was able to cut the SLU lead to eight on an Anthony Gurley 3-pointer with 7:51 left.

With three games remaining in the regular season, the Minutemen hit the road for a pair, at Dayton on Saturday at 7 p.m. and at La Salle on March 3 at 7 p.m., before returning to the Mullins Center on March 6 for a 4 p.m. tip against Rhode Island on Senior Day.




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