UMass Downs Duquesne, 92-83, Advances to A-10 Quarterfinals
March 6, 2012
AMHERST, Mass. - Chaz Williams, Javorn Farrell and Raphiael Putney combined for 61 points in leading No. 8 seed Massachusetts past No. 9 seed Duquesne 92-83 in the First Round of the 2012 Atlantic 10 Conference Championship at the Mullins Center Tuesday night.
With the win, UMass advances to Friday's quarterfinals where it will face No. 1 seed Temple. Tip-off at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City is set for Noon Eastern time.
Williams finished with 21 points, eight rebounds and four assists, while Farrell had his most complete game in three seasons at UMass with 20 points on 7-of-14 shooting, nine assists and seven rebounds. Putney matched Farrell's three 3-pointers en route to 20 points and six boards.
UMass (21-10) improved to 31-30 all time in A-10 Tourney play and advanced to the quarterfinals for the second time in the last three seasons and 26th time overall.
The Minutemen shot 51 percent from the floor, 47 pct. from outside and made 24-of-31 free throws. UMass also held a 40-34 edge on the glass.
Duquesne (16-15) had five players in double figures, led by Eric Evans and Jerry Jones, who finished with 16 apiece. Jones was 4-of-6 from behind the arc. The Dukes shot 44 pct.
The game had 14 lead changes and eight ties.
UMass pulled away from Duquesne early in the first half when a 14-3 Minuteman run extended their lead to 23-15 with 11:35 to play. Consecutive triples from Javorn Farrell and Raphiael Putney gave UMass its largest lead of the half, 29-18 with 10:22 on the clock.
Just over five minutes later, the Dukes tied it at 35. UMass broke a deadlock at 42 when it closed the half on a 9-6 run.
Both teams shot over 50 percent in the first period and combined for 13 3-pointers.
Duquesne led 78-73 with just over six minutes to play when UMass rattled off nine-consecutive points to stake a 82-78 lead. The Dukes answered the run with a three from Sean Johnson. That would be the final field goal for the Dukes over the final 6:02.
Williams made a running layup and a free throw to push the margin back to four. T.J. McConnell answered with two free throws to make it a 85-83 UMass lead. From there, the Minutemen connected on 7-of-8 from the charity stripe to close out the contest.