Minutemen Run Past Elon At Cage, 85-67
Nov. 11, 2011
AMHERST, Mass. - Playing just its second game in 18 years at the historic Curry Hicks Cage, UMass men's basketball (1-0) used a 21-4 run early in the second half to erase a four-point halftime deficit and cruise to a 85-67 victory over Elon (0-1) on Friday night. Sophomore transfer Chaz Williams led the way with 18 points and eight assists. Juniors Sampson Carter (17), Terrell Vinson (17) and Javorn Farrell (13) rounded out UMass' four double-digit scorers.
The Minutemen used a new running and pressing style and a raucous Cage crowd to force 25 Elon turnovers, scoring 32 points off those turnovers. Jesse Morgan led the charge on defense with a career-high five steals.
In his first game in a UMass uniform, Williams, a transfer from Hofstra, was the catalyst all night for the Minutemen, grabbing six rebounds and coming up with 3 steals to go with his 18 points and eight assists.
Vinson recorded the second double-double of his career, leading all players with 11 rebounds.
After Elon took a four-point lead into the half, and a quick jumper to start the second half gave Elon its largest lead of the game, 45-39 with 19:46 remaining, the Minutemen went on a charge, outscoring the Phoenix 21-4 over the next 5:09 to take an 11-point lead, 60-49 with 14:37 left. Sampson Carter scored eight points in the run that included 11 UMass points off turnovers.
Javorn Farrell hit a 3-pointer with 6:06 left in the second half that put UMass' lead over 20 points for the first time, 77-55.
For the game, UMass shot 44.3 percent from the field, while Elon shot 34.4 percent. The Minutemen finished 25-of-36 from the free throw line, and scored 12 fast-break points to Elon's two.
The Minutemen jumped out to an early 8-2 lead, forcing four Elon turnovers in the first four minutes. UMass reached its largest lead of the opening half , 21-13, on a Sean Carter dunk off a Chaz Williams assist with 11:53 remaining, but the Phoenix would battle back, using 14-of-17 free throw shooting, to take a four-point lead, 43-39 into halftime.
UMass forced 13 Elon turnovers in the half, scoring 13 points off those turnovers.
Lucas Troutman led all scorers in the first half with 11 points, while Williams paced the Minutemen with 10 points and four assists.
The Minutemen return to the Mullins Center on Monday when they host Northeastern at 7 p.m.
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