Minutemen Return To Mullins, Host Northeastern On Monday Night
Nov. 13, 2011
AMHERST, Mass. -
After a season-opening 85-67 victory over Elon at the Curry Hicks Cage on Friday night, the UMass men's basketball team (1-0) returns to the Mullins Center to host Northeastern (1-0) in an in-state battle Monday at 7 p.m. The game is the second of three home games in six days for the Minutemen.
The game will be televised in the Boston area on WBIN. "Voice of the Minutemen" Josh Maurer and Tim Kenney will call the action.
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. Adam Frenier, Tim Collins and Jason Germain will call the action. Live streaming video, audio and Gametracker will be available on UMassAthletics.com.
Since the Mullins Center opened in 1993, UMass is 15-4 in its first game each season at the facility. In last season's Mullins opener, the Minutemen came back from 22 down to defeat Rider, 77-67 on Nov. 12, 2010.
The Huskies are 1-0 on the season after beating in-city rival Boston University, 82-74 in overtime at Case Gym.
UMass is 15-4 in its Mullins Center openers. That includes the first-ever game played at the Mullins Center back in 1993. UMass' only other losses in home openers came in 2002 and 1999. UMass won the first six lid-lifters at Mullins.
This is the 52nd meeting between UMass and Northeastern in a series that dates back to the 1921-22 season. UMass leads the series 34-17.
The Huskies won the only time the teams played at the Mullins Center, 84-68 on Dec. 1, 2004. Their last meeting prior to that was in 1989.
SEASON-OPENING WIN AT THE CAGE
Playing just its second game in 18 years at the historic Curry Hicks Cage, UMass (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.
GOOD AS ADVERTISED
Redshirt sophomore point guard Chaz Williams went into his first game in a UMass uniform with the reponsibility of quarterbacking the Minutemen's new up-tempo offense and the tranfer from Hofstra lived up to the billing in the win over Elon, leading all scorers with 18 points to go with a game-high eight assists, six rebounds and three steals in 32 minutes.
Williams' eight assists were the most by a UMass player in over two seasons, dating back to Chris Lowe's eight assists against George Washington on March 4, 2009.
BRINGING THE PRESSURE
To go with the new up-tempo offense, Derek Kellogg has the Minutemen pressing and trapping more on defense in 2011-12. The new attacking defensive style worked extremely well in the opener vs. Elon, forcing 25 Phoenix turnovers and scoring 34 points off those turnovers, including 12 fast-break points.
Jesse Morgan led the defensive charge with a career-high five steals in 17 minutes. UMass finished with 14 steals total.
The Minutemen held the Phoenix to 34.4 percent shooting, including a 27.3 percent mark in the second half.
SAMPSON LEADS THE BIG RUN
The Minutemen used a 21-4 early-second half run to erase a four-point halftime deficit and take control of the game. Leading the way in that run was junior forward Sampson Carter with eight points. The swingman finished the game with 17 points and seven rebounds and was at his best in the second half when shot a perfect 4-of-4 from the field, including 2-of-2 from 3-point range, and was 6-for-7 at the line.
LALANNE TAKES PRESEASON A-10 HONOR
The Atlantic 10 Conference announced its preseason awards at its annual men's basketball media day in Brooklyn on Oct. 13 with UMass freshman Cady Lalanne being named to the All-Rookie Team. The forward from Orlando, Fla. is the first Minuteman named All-Rookie since Freddie Riley and Terrell Vinson in 2009.
Joining Lalanne on the All-Rookie Team are Dezmine Wells (Xavier), Jerrell Wright (La Salle), Justin Martin (Xavier), Alonzo Nelson-Odada (Richmond) and Anthony Lee (Temple).
Lalanne joins the Minutemen following becoming eligible per NCAA rules after attending UMass as a student in 20010-11. The 6-8 bigman played his high school ball at Oak Ridge in Orlando, Fla. and his AAU basketball with the Florida Rams.
UMASS BASKETBALL AIRS IN BOSTON
Nelligan Sports Marketing has reached an agreement with WBIN-TV that will allow UMass fans in the greater Boston area to watch approximately a dozen live broadcasts of UMass games, including football, hockey, men's and women's basketball, and lacrosse throughout the 2011-12 season beginning in November. The games will be produced by the UMass Sports Network.
WBIN-TV, the only locally owned and operated TV station in the Boston/Manchester market, reaches all major cable and satellite outlets in the greater Boston area. The UMass schedule on WBIN begins this Saturday, November 5 when the UMass hockey team takes on Boston College at the Mullins Center.
"We're truly excited to have reached an agreement with WBIN" said Pam Batalis, General Manager for Nelligan Sports. "In addition to providing a platform to showcase UMass Athletics, this partnership will increase the exposure and value to our current and future corporate partners by providing an avenue to reach University alumni and college sports fans located within WBIN's footprint."
UMASS SIGNS FLORIDA CENTER BERGANTINO
UMass men's basketball head coach Derek Kellogg, on the eve of the Minutemen's season opener, announced on Thursday the signing of 6-9 center Tyler Bergantino of Springhill, Fla. to a National Letter of Intent. The talented big man, now a senior at Nature Coast Technical High School in Brooksville, Fla., will join the Minutemen for the 2012-13 season.
"Tyler exemplifies exactly the type of person and player we want at UMass," Kellogg said. "He is an extremely high-character young man and plays the game at a high level at both ends of the floor. My staff, the team, the UMass community and I are all very excited to have Tyler joining the UMass basketball family."
At 6-9, 240 lbs., Bergantino is a physical force inside and possesses rapidly improving skill and touch around the basket. He enters his senior year at Nature Coast the school's all-time leading scorer with 1,150 career points. Bergantino is coming off a junior campaign in which he led all of Hernando County with averages of 17.9 points, 12.5 rebounds and 4.8 blocked shots. That followed up a sophomore season in 2009-10 in which he posted averages of 14.5 points, 10.9 rebounds and 5.2 blocks.
UMASS LED BY ONE OF ITS OWN
Derek Kellogg, in his fourth 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 second year as the head coach at Auburn. In his first season with the Tigers, Barbee's squad went 11-20 overall and 4-12 in the SEC after taking UTEP to the NCAA Tournament the previous season. Alum Harper Williams was named to Barbee's staff this summer.
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.
THANKSGIVING IN THE BAHAMAS
UMass will play three games over Thanksgiving weekend at the Battle 4 Atlantis at the Atlantis Resort on Paradise Island in the Bahamas. Touted as the richest early-season tournament ever, the Battle 4 Atlantis field includes National Champion Connecticut and Sweet Sixteen team from last season Florida State, who the Minutemen will face in the opening round on Thanksgiving Day at 4:30 p.m.
UMass will face either Harvard or Utah in the second round. The other first round matchups are UCF vs. College of Charleston and UConn vs. UNC-Asheville.
All 12 games of the tournament on Nov. 24-26 will be televised. VERSUS and HDNet will be carrying the game, including all three UMass contests. VERSUS will air the 2 p.m. and 4:30 p.m. games each day, this includes UMass' opening round game against Florida State. HDNet will air the 7 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. games each day.
All games in the Battle 4 Atlantis, including UMass' three games, will be played at the 4,000-seat Imperial Arena at the Atlantis Resort on Paradise Island, Bahamas. The half-million dollar temporary stadium boasts state-of-the-art regulation facilities at the epicenter of the world's largest open-air marine habitat complete with lavish guest accommodations, restaurants, bars, spa, lounges, waterslides and the largest casino in the Bahamas.
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.
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