Men's Basketball

Vinson's Hoop With .7 Left Lifts UMass Over Memphis, 73-72, In Boston

Ricky Harris had 13 points after missing last game with an ankle injury

Ricky Harris had 13 points after missing last game with an ankle injury

Dec. 19, 2009

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BOSTON - A basket in the lane by Terrell Vinson with .7 seconds left off an inbounds play erased a one-point deficit and gave UMass a thrilling 73-72 victory over Memphis at the TD Garden on Saturday night in front of 8,096 fans that braved winter storm conditions. Head Coach Derek Kellogg led his alma mater to the victory over the team he was an assistant for eight years in back and forth game in which the teams traded leads 18 times. The Minutemen improved to 6-5 on the season, while the Tigers fell to 7-2.

UMass trailed by on following two Ricky Harris free throws with 46.8 seconds left and got a stop on the defensive end when Elliot Williams' contested shot missed. The Minutemen had an inbounds play under the basket with 3.8 seconds left when Vinson came up with the loose ball off a lob attempt and banked it in with seven-tenths of a second remaining.

UMass held huge advantages in rebounding (44-24) and shooting (50.0 percent to 36.2 percent), but Memphis stayed in the game thanks to eight 3-point field goals and 24 points off 20 UMass turnovers.

Coming off his first career double-double, Vinson led again led the Minutemen with 21 points and added nine rebounds. Anthony Gurley, playing in his hometown, contributed 14 points, while Harris added 13. Memphis was led by Doneal Mack's 23 points.

It was a back and forth game in the opening minutes, as the teams traded leads seven times in the opening three and a half minutes. The Minutemen turned an early rebounding edge, 8-4 at the first media timeout, into second chance points, as Sean Carter and Hashim Bailey combined to score eight of UMass' first 10 points.

Memphis then went on a 9-3 run to open up a seven-point lead, 20-13, but the Minutemen responded by outscoring the Tigers, 18-9, over 8:21 to take a 31-29 lead with 3:44 left in the half. Gurley and Harris fueled the run with seven and six points, respectively. Memphis took a one-point lead into halftime, 35-32.

Mack led all scorers in the opening 20 minutes with 10 points, while UMass was led by Vinson's eight. UMass held the edge in shooting, 44 percent to 37.9 percent, and in rebounding, 24-11, but turned the ball over 11 times to Memphis' five.

The teams continued to go back and forth in the second half, as UMass used balanced scoring from seven different players in the first seven minutes of the half, while holding the Tigers to just four field goals over that span, but three of those four were 3-pointers. Memphis led by one, 49-48, when the Minutemen scored seven-straight points, started by a Gary Correia 3-pointer and capped off by a Vinson 3-point play, to take 56-49 lead with 13:34 to go.

The Minutemen still had a seven-point lead, 58-51, when Memphis, led by nine points from Witherspoon, went on a 12-2 run over the next 3:12 to take the lead back, 63-60 with 6:40 left.

The Minutemen return to action, and to the Boston area, on Wednesday when they take on Boston College at 7 p.m. at Conte Forum.




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