UMass Edged At Fordham; Hosts Dayton On Tuesday
March 5, 2011
BRONX, N.Y. - The UMass basketball team suffered a crushing loss at Fordham on Saturday as the Rams ended a 41-game Atlantic 10 conference losing streak with a 77-73 victory over the Minutemen. UMass finishes the regular-season at 15-14 and 7-9 in the Atlantic 10. The Minutemen, finished as the No. 8 seed and will host No. 9 seed Dayton (7-9 A-10), by virtue of the 55-50 UMass win earlier this season. The game will tip at 9 p.m., and be nationally televised on CBS College Sports.
Fordham won in 2011 for the first time to finish its season at 7-21 overall and 1-15 in the Atlantic 10.
On Senior Day, senior Brenton Butler canned a career-high seven 3-pointers and led the Rams with 29 points in his final college game. Chris Gaston had his 36th career double-double with 19 points and 14 rebounds. Lamount Samuell tallied 11 points.
UMass was led by senior Anthony Gurley, who tallied 30 points. He made just 3-of-13 in the second half after 6-of-10 in the first half. It was his third 30-point game of the season.
UMass rallied to cut the deficit to as small as three points on a Gurley 3-point play with 27 seconds left to make it 74-71. Butler made two free throws to seal the game with 20 seconds left and a two-possession lead.
The Minutemen were down by as many as 13 midway through the half, but got some life Raphiael Putney, who had seven second-half points and Farrell, who had all 11 of his points in the final 20 minutes.
The Rams continued to pull down key rebounds and hit clutch shots as the they were able to hold on for their first win in the A-10 since Jan. 28, 2009 at St Bonaventure.
The Rams maintained a double-figure lead for much of the second half as Gurley kept the Minutemen in the game in the first half with 20 of UMass' 33 points, as the Minutemen trailed 37-33 at intermission. The Rams led by as many as 10 points late in the first half and held an advantage for nearly the entire 20-minute span.
Butler was a shooting demon in the first half, making five 3-pointers for 15 points to lead the Rams, who were on top at halftime for just the third time in the Atlantic 10 season.