Senior Night Special: UMass Hosts Rival Temple
Senior Night Special: UMass Hosts Temple
The most heralded rivalry in Atlantic 10 history will have another chapter written on Wednesday night as the Temple Owls visit the Mullins Center for UMass' Senior Night. The Minutemen will honor its senior trio of Hashim Bailey, Gary Correia and Anthony Gurley in a pregame ceremony. UMass stands at 15-12 overall and 7-7 in the A-10 as it battles for a home game in the A-10 Tournament First Round. The three-time defending A-10 Champions Owls, who were ranked No. 24 in the polls last week, stand at 22-6 overall and 12-2 in the A-10. Should the Owls win the A-10 title in 2011, they would have a four-year reign, the longest since UMass won five in a row (1992-96).
UMass has won three straight home games in the series with Temple, knocking the Owls off in 2009 (79-75), 2007 (88-77) and 2006 (60-34). Overall, Temple leads the series 41-20 with a 76-64 victory last season in Philadelphia.
UMass has won seven straight Senior Day games, going back to 2004. Last season, the Minutemen downed Rhode Island, 69-67, on March 6, 2010 to severely damage the Rams' chances at an NCAA Tournament berth.
UMass is in the thick of competition for seeding in the Atlantic 10 Tournament in hope of hosting an A-10 First-Round Tournament game. The Minutemen stand tied for seventh place with Dayton and St. Bonaventure at 7-7 in league play. The Minutemen would hold the tiebreaker on both teams having beaten then in their matchups in 2011. As of today, UMass would host La Salle in an A-10 First Round game as a No. 7-No. 10 match-up. The top four teams in the A-10 received first-round byes while seeds 5-8 host first-round games on March 8 before the Tournament moves to Atlantic City (March 11-13).
With a UMass win against Temple and losses by Dayton (to Saint Louis) and St. Bonaventure (to Duquesne), the Minutemen would clinch a home game in the A-10 first round. There is also a scenario where UMass could actually get a first-round A-10 Tournament bye with a fourth place finish. If the Minutemen finish in a five-way tie at 9-7 with the following teams Rhode Island, Duquesne, George Washington and St. Bonaventure, UMass would hold the tiebreaker and finish fourth.
The final regular-season tilt will be played at Fordham next Saturday, March 5. The A-10 standings will be set on March 5 and a television schedule will be unveiled following. Three of the four first-round A-10 games will be televised nationally on CBS College Sports in the slots of 5 p.m., 7 p.m. and 9 p.m.
At 15-11 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 win over Saint Joseph's (2/23) secured a winning regular-season. The seven A-10 wins also equal the most under coach Derek Kellogg.
The game can be heard on the UMass Sports Network on 100.9 FM WRNX in Western Mass and 830 AM WCRN in Central Mass., 1510 AM The Zone in Eastern Mass., and 95.9 AM WATD on Boston's South Shore "Voice of the Minutemen" Josh Maurer will call the action with Tim Collins and Glenn Wong. Live streaming video, audio and Gametracker will be available on UMassAthletics.com.
Solid Play In The A-10
The Minutemen are fighting for a homecourt first-round game in the A-10 Tournament and stand at 7-7 in the league with back-to-back wins at Rhode Island and vs. Saint Joseph's last week.
UMass has limited its opponents just 37.5 from the floor in A-10 play. That includes holding foes to less than 40 percent on field goals in all seven wins with dominating defense vs. Dayton (28.6 percent), at Charlotte (32.1), at St. Bonaventure (35.6) vs. Rhode Island, twice (37.0 and 29.3) and vs. Saint Joseph's (30.8).
Similarly, the defense on 3-point field goal percentage has been stellar. Foes are just 30.2 from beyond the arc. That includes all seven losing opponents shooting below 32 percent this season. In the last two wins, UMass' opponents are 5-of-45 (11.1) percent. The Rhode Island Rams were just 1-of-19 (5.3 percent) on Feb. 19. That was followed by Saint Joseph's missing its first 12 3-pointers of the game, so over two games, UMass' opponents were 1-of-31 (3.2 percent).
Anthony Gurley has led UMass in scoring in nine of 14 Atlantic 10 games with a 16.4 average. Overall, he has led UMass in scoring in 21 of 27 games with an 18.3 overall scoring average, third in the A-10.
Javorn Farrell scored in double-figures in four conference games in a row (Jan. 15-26). 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).
With its 5-2 start in the Atlantic 10, UMass had its best start to a conference season since 2006-07, when UMass began 7-2 on the way to a 13-3 mark and a share of the A-10 regular-season crown.
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.
UMass had more than two players in double-figures in three of its seven wins. Also the game against La Salle (1/15) marked for the first time since Nov. 27 that UMass turned the trick. Against the Explorers, 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. Most recently in the win at Rhode Island (2/19), Gurley led the way with 16, complemented by 11 points apiece from Gary Correia, Sampson Carter and Raphiael Putney.
Series With Temple
The series with UMass and Temple has been one of the most intense in the history of the Atlantic 10 as the teams battle for the 62nd time on Wednesday. Despite Temple winning the first 21 games in the series, UMass only trails the all-time series, 41-20. Since the Minutemen won their first game in the series (65-52) on Feb. 16, 1992 at the Cage, UMass has won 20 of the last 40 games. Temple captured last season's game in Philly, 76-64 on Jan. 13, 2010. UMass won the last meeting in Amherst, 79-75 in 2009 for its first win in the series in three seasons. Temple won the previous game in Philadelphia, 80-70, in overtime on Feb. 10, 2008.
Prior to 2008, UMass and Temple had played twice every season since the Owls joined the Atlantic 10 in 1982-83. Because of scheduling policies, the teams play just once this year, again.
The Owls hold a 24-4 advantage for games played in Philadelphia at the Liacouras Center (11-1), McGonigle Hall (12-3) or the Palestra (1-0). UMass' only win at the Liacouras Center came on Jan. 27, 2001, a 65-64 overtime victory. Temple has won seven home games in the series in a row.
The Minutemen have won the last three games at the Mullins Center, winning 88-77 on Jan. 13, 2007 and 60-34 on Jan. 21, 2006. That was the fewest points UMass allowed since 1950. Prior to that, Temple had won three straight including both games in 2004-05, by virtually the same score: 61-49 on Jan. 5, 2005 at UMass and 61-48 on Feb. 26, 2005 at Temple.
After Temple led the series 21-0, UMass rebounded to win 13 of 15 contests from 1992-97, including two six-game win streaks. Since then the Owls have won 12 of 19 meetings, but UMass snapped Temple's three-game series win streak in the series, at the Mullins Center with a 66-65 win on Jan. 24, 2004.
UMass is 13-5 all-time against Temple at the Mullins Center. The 18 games played against the Owls are the most UMass has played against any team all-time at the Mullins Center since the building opened in 1993. The 13 wins are also the most by UMass against any team at the Mullins Center.
UMass coach Derek Kellogg will coach against Temple for the third time, in his third year as a head man. As a player from 1992-95, Kellogg and his Minutemen went 8-3 against the Owls including winning three Atlantic 10 Championship games in 1993, 1994 and 1995. Temple coach Fran Dunphy is 3-4 against UMass losing twice while he was at Penn. Prior to making the move from Penn to Temple, the last time he coached against the Minutemen was on Jan. 14, 1995, a 93-60 UMass win at the Mullins Center.
Last Season's Game At Temple
Jan. 16, 2010: #19 Temple 76, UMass 64
#19 Temple used some red-shot shooting from 3-point range to knock off UMass, 76-64, at the Liacouras Center. The Owls (15-3, 3-0 A-10) converted 14-of-25 3-pointers including senior Ryan Brooks canning a career-best 7-of-12 from beyond the arc. Brooks led all scorers with a career-high 29 points. UMass (7-10, 1-3) was led by Anthony Gurley, who scored 20 points. Ricky Harris added 11, his 27th game in a row in double-figures.
Temple's Juan Fernandez added 15 points including 4-of-5 from 3-point land. Temple's total of 14 3-pointers, was one shy of the UMass opponent record for a game. Back in 2003, St. Bonaventure was 15-of-35 from 3-point range. Brooks was also one shy of the UMass opponent individual record for treys. Shan Foster made eight 3-pointers for Vanderbilt on Jan. 5, 2008.
The Minutemen showed great fortitude in the second half keeping Temple without a basket for 7:18 and cutting the Owl lead to just seven at 58-51 on a 3-pointer by Javorn Farrell with 8:41 left in the second half. But Fernandez answered with a bomb to end the drought and regain a double-figure lead at 63-51 with 7:43 left in regulation.
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 year) 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 has led UMass in scoring in 21 of 27 games this season, most recently with 22 vs. Saint Joseph's (2/23). Gurley had at least 10 points in the first 22 games of the season before being held to just nine vs. Duquesne (2/16). Gurley ranks third in the Atlantic 10 in scoring (18.3).
Gurley enters the game with 1,266 points at UMass and 1,465 in his college career with 199 coming at Wake Forest. He stands 17th all-time in points, next on the list is No. 16 Billy Tindall (1,277). Gurley passed No. 19 Al Skinner (1,235), who coached Rhode Island for nine years (1988-97) with 16 points at Rhode Island (2/19).
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 18.3 points per game and probably a minimum of four more games, Gurley would finish with about 1,320 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.
Gurley has scored in double-figures 73 times in his career and has reached 20 points 22 times, 12 times this year, the last with 22 vs. Saint Joseph's (2/23).
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 Marcus Camby 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 is eighth in career 3-pointers made list at UMass with 145 (on 420 attempts). Gurley passed his head coach Derek Kellogg at Rhode Island (2/19) 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 scored in double-figures four games in a row (1/15-26) 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 the second-most points on the team at 8.4 points along with 4.0 rebounds in 24 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 lasttwo games vs. Richmond (1/22) and at St. Bonaventure (1/26).
Ready Freddie Filling It Up
Sophomore Freddie Riley is third on the team in scoring with an 8.3 points per game average. He missed the Duquesne (2/16) and Rhode Island (2/19) games with a right foot/ankle injury and did not play in the Saint Joseph's (2/23) game. He returned to action at La Salle (2/27) and had seven points. 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 has six games this season in double-figures and 17 in his career
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.
At Saint Joseph's (2/5), he tallied 14, all in the game's final 6:51 as UMass' rally fell short in a 67-64 loss. It was his sixth game this year in double-figures.
Call On Correia For Assists
Senior Gary Correia has been solid as the team's starting points guard since the start of Atlantic 10 play. Correia is averaging 4.8 points and 3.9 assists in 14 A-10 games. Correia has shown scoring prowess of late with a career-high 15 points vs. George Washington (2/13) and 11 at Rhode Island (2/19). Over his last five games, Correia is averaging 8.2 points and 4.0 assists. He tied his career-high of seven assists in the win against Saint Joseph's (2/23). He set the high of seven vs. La Salle (1/15), earlier this year.
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.
LAGUERRE SIGNS NLI WITH UMASS
Explosive guard Jordan Laguerre (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 Gary Forbes 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 Marcus Camby 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.
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.
KELLOGG'S MISSION 1000
UMass head coach Derek Kellogg 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.
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