• The UMass basketball team finishes a two-game road trip spanning six days on Saturday night at Hagan Arena as the Minutemen take on Saint Joseph’s at 7 p.m. UMass travelled to Philadelphia on Thursday after dropping a 69-53 decision at Saint Louis, Wednesday night. That defeat ended a two-game winning streak overall and back-to-back road conference wins.
• The Minutemen (13-8, 5-3) stand tied for fifth in the Atlantic 10 while the Hawks are winless in the league at 0-8 and 5-17 overall. At 5-3, UMass is off to its best start in Atlantic 10 play since the 2006-07 season, when the Minutemen went 13-3 to win a share of the Atlantic 10 regular-season crown.
• At 13-8 overall, UMass has surpassed its win total from each of the last two season as the Minutemen won 12 games in 2008-09 and 2009-10.
• The game can be heard on the UMass Sports Network on 100.9 FM WRNX in Western Mass, 1510 AM The Zone and 95.9 FM WATD in Eastern Mass. 830 AM WCRN in Central Mass., will not carry this game. “Voice of the Minutemen” Josh Maurer will call the action with Tim Kenney and Tim Collins. Streaming video, audio and Gametracker will be available on UMassAthletics.com.
Quick Hits From the 5-3 A-10 Start
• UMass won consecutive road conference games, Charlotte (73-54) and St. Bonaventure (78-69) on back-to-back Wednesday’s in January. That marked the first time since 2007-08 UMass has won consecutive conference road games.
• The Minutemen have had a tough travel month with four straight Wednesday night road games via airplane travel. This game at Saint Joseph’s wraps up the road trip which began with a flight to St. Louis on Monday, a day earlier than planned due to the impending snow storm that hit much of the nation.
• UMass has limited its opponents just 38.2 from the floor in A-10 play. That includes holding foes to less than 40 percent on field goals in all five wins with dominating defense vs. Dayton (28.6 percent), at Charlotte (32.1), at St. Bonaventure (35.6) and vs. Rhode Island (37.0).
• UMass won back-to-back road games in conference play with wins at Charlotte and St. Bonaventure for the first time under Derek Kellogg and since the 2007-08 season.
• At Saint Louis (2/2), Anthony Gurley led UMass in scoring for the 19th time in 21 games with 19 points. Gurley is averaging 23.0 in his last five games, with 20 in three of the last five contests.
• Javorn Farrell has scored in double-figures in four of the last six games. He averaged 14.0 points in the four games in a row. He had 16 against Richmond (1/22) and at St. Bonaventure (1/26).
• UMass had more than two players in double-figures in two of its last four wins -- for the first time since Nov. 27. Against LaSalle (1/15) Anthony Gurley (20), Sean Carter (15), Javorn Farrell (13) and Terrell Vinson (11) all met the mark. For Carter and Vinson, the point totals were season highs. At Charlotte, Freddie Riley had 18, Gurley 17 and Farrell added 11.
Shooting Tells The Story
• How the shooting from the floor goes is how the Minutemen go. UMass is 10-1 this season when shooting a better percentage from the floor than its opponents. The Saint Louis game was the first when UMass outshot its foe from the floor and lost.
• UMass is 4-0 when shooting above 50 percent on field goals and 10-2 when making more than 40 percent of its shots.
• On defense, when UMass holds opponents to less than 40 percent from the floor, UMass is 10-2. When foes shoot less than 50 percent, UMass is 13-4.
• Conversly, UMass is 3-7 when shooting a worse field goal percentage and 0-4 when opponents shot better than 50 percent.
Series History With Saint Joseph’s
• This will be the 58th meeting between UMass and Saint Joseph’s, with UMass holding a 30-27 lead all-time. UMass has won three games in a row in the series including both games last season and the last two games at St. Joe’s.
• UMass won the first meeting last season, 87-80 on Jan. 27 at the Hagan Arena and 70-62 at the Mullins Center on Feb. 14.
• Two years ago, each road team won to give UMass back the edge in the series that has been more even of late. The teams have split the last six games with the Hawks winning three in a row in 2008-09.
• UMass ended SJU’s win streak with a 70-69 win in Philly on Feb. 22, 2009. Saint Joe’s won three games in a row finishing with a 68-64 win on Feb. 8, 2009. The Hawks won twice in 2007-08. The Hawks pulled off a 98-92 win at the Mullins Center on Jan. 9, 2008 while UMass made an amazing comeback but lost at Hawk Hill, 81-77 on Jan. 23.
• Saint Joseph’s has won 12 of the last 18, but prior to that UMass ran off six consecutive win in the series.
• The Minutemen hold a 15-7 advantage against Saint Joseph’s for games played in Amherst, including a 9-7 mark against the Hawks at the Mullins Center.
• Saint Joseph’s holds a 15-12 advantage against the Minutemen for regular-season games played in Philadelphia. Saint Joe’s holds a 12-11 mark against UMass in Alumni Memorial Fieldhouse. At The Palestra vs. SJU, UMass is 3-4 overall with two wins in the A-10 Tournament and last season. UMass is 1-3 in regular-season games against the Hawks at The Palestra, losing in 1983, 84 and 88.
• This will be UMass head coach Derek Kellogg’s fifth game against the Hawks and is 3-1. Kellogg did play against Saint Joseph’s when Phil Martelli was an assistant at SJU. Martelli took over as head coach in 1995-96, the year UMass made the Final Four. Martelli stands 14-14 all-time against the Minutemen in his career.
Last Season’S Game:
Feb. 14, 2010 - UMass 70, Saint Joseph’s 62
AMHERST, Mass. - UMass held Saint Joseph’s scoreless for the final 10:49 of the first half going on a 16-0 run to secure a 70-62 win over the Hawks at the Mullins Center. The Minutemen put forth a tremendous defensive effort forcing Saint Joseph’s to miss its final 13 shots of the first half as the Hawks didn’t make a field goal in the final 11:35. Ricky Harris led the Minutemen with 27 points as he became the fourth player in UMass history to surpass 1,800 career points. Anthony Gurley added 15 points. Sean Carter grabbed double-figure rebounds for the fifth time this season and second game in a row with 11.
Jan. 27, 2010 - UMass 87, Saint Joseph’s 80
PHILADELPHIA - In a game of runs, UMass used a 15-2 run midway through the second half keyed by Freddie Riley 3-pointers to win at Saint Joseph’s newly-refurbished Hagan Arena, 87-80. Riley (14) was one of four UMass players to score in double-figures. Ricky Harris led the way with 23 points while Terrell Vinson had 16. UMass (8-12, 2-4 A-10) had a season-best 11 different scorers in the game.Saint Joseph’s (8-12, 2-4) was led by Garrett Williamson’s 16 points, while Idris Hilliard added 14. UMass was dominant on the glass, outrebounding the Hawks 44-31, led by Vinson and Sean Carter with nine each and Harris, who had a career-high eight boards. After UMass had built a lead of 12 several times midway through the first half, Saint Joseph’s used a 17-4 run bridging the first and second half to regain the lead at 42-41 on a 3-point play by Darren Govens with 18:39 left in the second half. That started a game of back-and-forth early in the second half as the game stood tied at 49 on a Riley 3-pointer with 15:54 left.
Best Starts In UMass History
• The 7-0 start this season was the best since the 1995-96 team. UMass started with a school-record 26 consecutive wins on to the way to a 35-2 season and an NCAA Final Four appearance. UMass also had a 7-0 mark in 1968-69.
• Here are the best starts at UMass: 1995-96 (26-0); 1933-34 (12-0 undefeated season); 1970-71 (11-0); 1973-74 (9-0); 1925-26 (9-0); 1977-78 (8-0); 2010-11 (7-0); 1968-69 (7-0); 1975-76 (6-0); 1971-72 (6-0); 1956-57 (6-0).
• The program started 5-0 in 1991-92 (Derek Kellogg’s freshman season) and 1930-31.
One Of The Final 22
• Prior to the loss to Boston College at the TD Garden on Dec. 4, 2009, at 7-0 UMass was one of the final 22 undefeated teams in NCAA Division I. The Minutemen were also the last unbeaten team in the Atlantic 10.
• The loss to BC also saw the end the longest win streak for UMass since 1998. The seven-game run was the longest since the Minutemen won 10 games in a row from Jan. 3-Feb. 1, 1998.
Gurley, A Big Man On Campus
• Anthony Gurley led UMass in scoring for 19 time of 21 games this season with 19 at Saint Louis (2/2). He has 98 points in his last four games with 21 vs. Rhode Island (1/30), 28 at St. Bonaventure (1/26), 30 points vs. Richmond (1/22). He is averaging 23.0 over his last five games with 20 on three occasions.
• Gurley has at least 12 points in every game this season and ranks third in the Atlantic 10 and 20th in the NCAA in scoring (20.3).
• Gurley enters the game with 1,198 points at UMass and 1,397 in his college career with 199 coming at Wake Forest. He stands 23rd all-time in points. Next on the list at No. 21 are both Anthony Anderson (1,211) and Jim Town (1,211). He passed former teammate point guard Chris Lowe (1,152) in the win at the Bonnies.
• Gurley scored his 1,000th career point with his final field goal against Rider (11/12) and passed the milestone at UMass with a free throw vs. hometown team Boston University (12/31) at Mullins Center
• At his current rate of 20.3 points per game with at least nine more games, Gurley would finish with about 1,380 points at UMass. No. 14 on the UMass scoring list is NBA Hall of Fame legend Julius Erving, who scored 1,370 in two seasons at UMass from 1969-71.
• He led UMass in scoring in the first six games this season including 24 vs. Holy Cross (11/27), 22 points vs. AIC (11/24) and 18 points in the win over Sacred Heart (11/17).
• He now has scored in double-figures 70 times in his career and has reached 20 points 21 times, 11 times this year including four of the his last six games.
• Gurley scored a career-high 31 points to serve a part of the two-headed offensive attack in the big rally against Rider (11/12) With 31 points in the opener, Gurley tallied the most points by a UMass player in a season debut since MarcusCamby netted 32 against Kentucky in the 1995-96 season opener. Gurley was named to the Atlantic 10 Weekly Honor Roll on Nov. 15 for his performance.
• Gurley has reached 10th on the career 3-pointers made list at UMass with 135 (on 389 attempts). Guley can pass his head coach Derek Kellogg with four made treys as the former Minuteman point guard was 138-362 in his career as a player from 1991-95.
Junkyard Dog Farrell Makes Major Impact
• Sophomore swingman Javorn Farrell has been a spark to the team’s success. Farrell has scored in double-figures four of the last six games and has eight games this season in double-figures. UMass is 7-1 when Farrell scores 10 or more points.
• After missing the first two games of the season with an ankle injury, Farrell returned to the lineup and been an instant impact player. He is averaging 9.5 points and 4.0 rebounds in 19 games. He notched a career-high 25 points in leading UMass to the win at Quinnipiac (12/1). He had scored 15 points in his first game of the year, vs. New Mexico State (11/20) and followed that up with 10 points vs. TCU (11/22). Most recently, he scored in double-figures with 13 vs. La Salle (1/15), 11 at Charlotte (1/19) and 16 in each of the last two games vs. Richmond (1/22) and at St. Bonaventure (1/26).
Ready Freddie Filling It Up
• Sophomore FreddieRiley is third on the team in scoring with a 8.5 points per game average. He tallied a career-high 28 with 23 coming in the second half alone in the season-opening win over Rider (11/12). He passed his former high of 22 vs. La Salle (1/10/10). Riley scored in double-figures for the 13th time in his career with 28. Riley also scored more than 20 points for the third time.
• He added 10 points vs. TCU for his second game this season in double-figures and added 17 in 17 minutes vs. Holy Cross (11/27). He netted 14 in his last contest vs. Seton Hall (12/11).
• Riley had his best game since the season opener on Jan. 19 at Charlotte as he scored 18 points (15 in the first half). Riley was playing the game with a heavy heart as his friend T.J. Gordon had been killed the night before the game. Riley played the game in his dedication.
UMass Calls Upon Sampson
• Sophomore Sampson Carter had the best game of his two-year career with a 17-point, 8-rebound effort vs. Sacred Heart (11/17). The Baton Rouge native is averaging 7.9 points and 5.0 rebounds in 15 starts. He was in double-figures for three games in a row with 14 vs. Holy Cross (11/27). Carter set a career-high with 10 rebounds vs. Seton Hall (12/11). Last season, Carter averaged 4.3 points and 3.4 rebounds.
First Undefeated Tournament Since 1995
• With a 4-0 mark in the Hall of Fame Tip-Off, UMass captured undefeated regular-season tournament since the 1995 Rainbow Classic. That year, the Minutemen took the crown in Honolulu with wins over NC State, USC and NC State with a 3-0 mark.
• This year, UMass swept the Hall of Fame Tip-Off with wins over Rider (77-67), New Mexico State (71-57), TCU (67-48) and AIC (83-56). It marked the first four-game sweep in a tournament in school history.
Return To The Cage, a Huge Success
• UMass played its first regular-season game at the Curry Hicks in 6,511 games, dating to the Final “Rage In The Cage” on Jan. 29, 1993 with an 83-76 win on Nov, 27, 2010. UMass is now 360-212 in 572 all-time games at the Cage from 1932-93 and the game this season.
• UMass “extended” its winning streak at the Curry Hicks Cage to 15 games with a 17-year gap. The streak spans back to the 1991-92 season as the Minutemen won their final 14 games before moving to the Mullins Center in Feb. 1993.
34-Point Swing In Win Over Rider
• UMass rallied for its largest comeback since the 2008 NIT Quarterfinals vs. Syracuse when the Minutemen also rallied from down 22 points in the second half. UMass was down by 22 with 16:24 left in the second half (46-24) and rallied to win by 10. The game included a 34-point swing in a 15-minute span as the Minutemen led by 12 75-63 with just over a minute left. The last time UMass rallied from as large a margin was on March 28, 2008 in the NIT Quarterfinals as the Minutemen came back from a 54-32 with 14:37 left in the second half to post an 81-77 victory on the way to the NIT Finals.
LAGUERRE SIGNS NLI WITH UMASS
• Explosive guard JordanLaguerre (pronounced LUH-garry) has signed his National Letter Of Intent to join the UMass Basketball program for the 2011-12 season. The 6-2, 175-pounder is currently in his second season at the New Hampton School in New Hampshire. Laguerre is a lefthander with an explosive first step, incredible leaping ability, and a scorer’s mentality. The Manchester, N.H., native averaged 14 points per game as a junior and is expected to take an even more dominant role in the offense this season.
UMass Alum Leading UMass
• Derek Kellogg, in his third season, is the first UMass alum to serve as the head coach of his alma mater since Tom McLaughlin, who coached the Minutemen from 1981-83. Kellogg graduated from UMass in 1995 where he was an All-Atlantic 10 selection in 1995. McLaughlin graduated from UMass in 1973 where he was one of three future head coaches on the team. He was joined by former Boston College head coach Al Skinner and current Louisville coach Rick Pitino.
• Kellogg is not the only current head coach from the UMass rosters in the mid-90s as Tony Barbee is in his first year as the head coach at Auburn. Coaching at Texas-El Paso last season, Barbee led the Miners to the NCAA Tournament.
• Prior to McLaughlin, the last UMass alum to lead his alma mater was Lorin Ball (Class of 1921), who coached the team from 1945-52.
Forbes Makes NBA With Denver Nuggets
• Former UMass star basketball player GaryForbes made the opening day roster of the Denver Nuggets and drew his first NBA start on Nov. 3 vs. Dallas, where he guarded All-Star Dirk Nowitzki. He scored a pro-best 19 points vs. his hometown New York Knicks on Nov. 16 to go along with a career-high nine rebounds. The 2008 Atlantic 10 Player of the Year became the seventh UMass player to play in the NBA joining current Portland Trailblazer MarcusCamby in the league. Forbes averaged 10.1 ppg in the preseason to earn a spot with the Nuggets. In 44 games this season (through Feb. 3), he is averaging 4.9 points and 1.6 rebounds.
• “He’s an NBA player,” Denver forward Carmelo Anthony said. “He’s got an NBA body, a guy who’s willing to learn. He’s just a good addition to the team.”
• At UMass, Forbes was named the 2007-08 Atlantic 10 Player of the Year and a first-team all-conference selection. Forbes had a sensational senior season in 2007-08, finishing as the A-10’s co-scoring champion with 610 points (20.3 ppg) along with Temple’s Dionte Christmas. The New York native led the Minutemen to the NIT Championship game at Madison Square Garden, averaging 14.8 points in five NIT games, 17.5 in NIT Final Four, and was named to the NIT All-Tournament Team.
FOLLOW THE TEAM ONLINE
• Looking for all the latest news on the Minutemen and Coach Kellogg? There are several ways to keep tabs on all of the updates on the squad.
• Your first and Number 1 source is UMassAthletics.com. The official website of the UMass teams features news, stats, profiles, videos, photos, auctions, live audio, live video and so much more. Visit every day when you get home for a complete recap story, box score, video highlights, photo gallery and postgame press conference from every game.
• Our daily blog “Just Take A Minute” has all the latest news from the media along with special information. Its updated several times each day.
• Follow the teams and Coach Kellogg on Twitter. Get the news instantly for all Minuteman and Minutewoman teams by following @UMassAthletics. For the latest on the basketball team and Coach, follow him at @CoachKellogg.
• The UMass Facebook page is very active, become a fan today at Facebook.com/UMassAthletics. You can also follow Coach Kellogg on his Facebook.com/CoachKellogg account.
• Also, UMass has a very comprehensive YouTube page with video highlights, features, interviews and press conferences. Visit today at YouTube.com/UMassAthletics.
KELLOGG’S MISSION 1000
• UMass head coach DerekKellogg has made it his personal mission to get more interest in the UMass basketball program. Along with the athletic department, MISSION 1000 was launched in September to garner more attention. Close to a dozen events have been held throughout the state of Massachusetts to spread the word of UMass basketball with an emphasis of being more involved in the community.
• As part of MISSION 1000, UMass head coach Derek Kellogg, his staff and players hand-delivered season tickets to patrons throughout Western Massachusetts. They were greeted with excitement of fans from Amherst to Springfield.
• UMass’ exhibition game vs. Brandeis on Nov. 4 was a benefit for The Food Bank of Western Massachusetts. Fans brought 2 cans of nonperishable food to the Mullins Center to gain admission in place of a ticket price. More than 1,000 cans were donated.