LIVE BLOG: Men's Basketball Hosts Holy Cross
Dec. 10, 2008
AMHERST, Mass. -
After dropping an 85-81 overtime heartbreaker on Saturday night vs. Boston College, the Minutemen stay home for their second-consecutive game vs. a Commonwealth rival. Holy Cross and UMass will face for the first time since 2001, when the Crusaders topped the Minutemen at the Mullins Center, 67-56 on Dec. 4, 2001. The game marks the second of a basketball doubleheader as the Minutewomen face the Delaware Blue Hens at 5 p.m.
9:18 p.m. Back for one final time with some stats to pass along. UMass shot 50% from the field at 25-for-50, including 7-for-22 from behind the arc. UMass' leading scorer was Ricky Harris who had 17 of his 23 points in the second half. Tony Gaffney was strong once again with 17 points, 11 rebounds, and eight blocks. OH so close to another triple double.
HC was 20-for-56 from the field thanks to some great defense by the Minutemen, especially in the second half. In fact, UMass held the Crusaders to only 27 second-half points...HC was led by RJ Evans with 17 points, Devin Brown with 14, and Andrew Keister with 10.
Signing off from the Mullins Center. Have a great night. We'll see you in two nights for some hockey action as the Minutemen host Atlantic Hockey's AIC Yellowjackets. Remember to catch the men's basketball team go for its second straight win against defending national Champion Kansas at 2 p.m. on ESPN! GREAT NIGHT for the Minutemen. GO UMASS!
9:15 p.m. AND YOUR FINAL, UMass 73, Holy Cross 59. Great to see Coach Kellogg get his first home and first Division I win. Assistant Vance Walberg gave Kellogg a pat on the back...The rest of the team headed over to the student section to thank the students for their support. Great sight!
9:13 p.m. Walk-on Lex Mongo along with freshman Travon Wilcher are into the lineup with less than a minute remaining. It must be a thrill for Mongo to see his first action at home (he played in one road contest this season). CONGRATS!
9:09 p.m. Finally!! Everything seems to be clicking in this second half, so let's hope it's a start of great things! Sometimes it takes time for a team to develop, but by looking at this second half, things seemed to be looking up and only up...
With 2:48 to go, the Minutemen lead by 18, 72-54. Close games are always exciting, but this team was due for a comfortable win.
9:05 p.m. Just got this attendance in...And the magic number is: 4,102. Nice showing by the UMass faithful for a weeknight game. The player are playing their hearts out...Let's pack the Mullins Center all year!
9:03 p.m. Matt Glass with ANOTHER three and UMass is running away with it at 67-51 with 5:19 to go. Ralph Willard is out of timeouts...The crowd gave UMass a well-deserved standing ovation!
It's been an all-around team effort. Flying under the radar is Chris Lowe who is up to 11 assists for the second game in a row (his ninth career game with double figure assists).
8:59 p.m. I blinked and looked up and it's 62-49 UMass with about 6:30 to go!! The Minutemen seem to be clicking on all cylinders...Let's hope it lasts. The team is definitely playing with added confidence. Let's see if they can hold on!
8:57 p.m. One of the young kids who wiped the floor just got a big hand from the crowd! Love to see that!
8:53 p.m. Coach Kellogg just took Matt Glass out of the game and got the crowd on its feet to thank him for his great effort...He has been key down low...The Minutemen had their LARGEST lead of the game at 57-47, but it's now 57-49 as HC just got its first FG in 6:02...less than eight minutes to go!
8:49 p.m. Matt Glass...FOR THREE! UMass has upped its lead to eight, matching the largest lead of the game...Tony Gaffney triple-double watch update: 12 points, 9 rebounds, and 8 blocks...Still 10 minutes to go only needing a rebound and two blocks. Let's go TONY!
Holy Cross is in a drought of its own, without a field goal in over four minutes. Last was with 14:19 to go and we're not under 10 minutes remaining.
8:47 p.m. The Minutemen are on a roll...it's now 50-45 in favor of the Minutemen, forcing HC Head Coach Ralph Willard to call ANOTHER timeout...He's down to one with 10:38 still to go...The fans are loving it!
8:42 p.m. UMass is BACK...The Minutemen own their first lead since 10:06 to go in the first half when it was 21-20...It's now 46-45 UMass with 11:59 remaining in the second half. Ricky Harris just hit a three to propel himself into sixth place on the UMass career three-pointers made list. He is up to 14 points while Anthony Gurley and Tony Gaffney each have 10.
The jumbotron showed an interview from (current L.A. Clipper) Marcus Camby to the delight of the crowd. It definitely caught the fans' attention. He still remembers where his roots are...at UMass...VERY COOL!
8:40 p.m. Coach Kellogg really hasn't found an answer down low...He knows Tony Gaffney will be solid (if not spectacular), but has been flip-flopping Matt Glass and Tyrell Lynch. Both have three fouls which isn't helping things.
8:35 p.m. HC called its third timeout of the game and has only two remaining...Every time the Minutemen get within one, the Crusaders have answered right back. One thing is for sure: UMass has to fight and claw for every inch and when it gets its first Division I one of the year (whether it be tonight or not), they will have earned it. The players are leaving everything on the floor.
The Mullins Center showed a game from 14 years ago tonight, Dec. 10, 1994, when Mike Williams scored 18 points (12 after halftime) as the #5 Minutemen beat #11 Maryland, 85-74. (for more "This Day in UMass History," check out the ticker on front of UMassAthletics.com!
8:31 p.m.The Minutemen are showing some life as an Anthony Gurley three tied the score at 36 before HC answered back with a bucket of its own...Coach Kellogg was hot at the officials after a few non-calls, but that's the way it goes...38-36 HC with a TON of time to go (15:48).
8:25 p.m. The second half is under way!
8:20 p.m. With less than five minutes to go until the second half, I'd like to take this time to remind you that the Mass Attack hockey team is back home on Friday at 7 p.m. against AIC...Come out and support the Minutemen in their final game before the Holidays!
Then on Saturday, UMass men's basketball is at Kansas at 2 p.m. in a game televised on ESPN...The game ad was being shown during last night's Jimmy V. Classic at MSG (The Davidson/West Virginia game was great by the way!)...Very neat to see the ad on ESPN!
8:15 p.m. Some key halftime stats...
FG's: UMass 10-22, HC 11-33
Gaffney seems to be having a quiet game, but then you look at the stats and see he's at six points, six rebounds, and five assists. On pace for a triple-double!
And for Holy Cross scoring: R.J. Evans (10) and Devin Brown (7). Five others have scored for the Crusaders.
8:10 p.m. We've reached halftime...and UMass is trailing 32-29...but that's not necessarily the worst thing because the Minutemen are only 1-5 when leading at the half this year. The only game UMass was not leading at the half was the Memphis game. Maybe it's a good omen...We shall see!
Tyrell Lynch ended the half on a positive note with a layup with only seconds to go. He then had a mini staredown with the HC player, but thankfully nothing came of it.
Back in a bit with some statistics.
8:03 p.m. Tyrell Lynch got on the board with a deuce with 2:12 to go...It was the first field goal by a UMass player other than Anthony Gurley since Tony Gaffney had one with 15:02 to go...Still a close one: HC 31, UMass 25, less than two minutes to go in the half.
7:59 p.m. It wouldn't be UMass basketball without the dance team...During the media timeout, it performed a sensational routine as usual...Great job!
UMass down to 8-for-18 shooting (44%), but the percentage still is better than HC 37%...The problem is HC has a whopping 12 more attempts due to an 18-12 rebound advantage...Anthony Gurley now leads UMass in points (7) while Chris Lowe still has six...R.J. Evans has impressed with 10 points on 4-for-10 shooting and Devin Brown has added seven (5-for-5 from the free throw line).
7:56 p.m. The Minutemen have hit a major drought...At 10:06, UMass was up 21-20, but did not score for the next 5:39...Anthony Gurley ended it with a layup...HC 29, UMass 23.
7:50 p.m. As we've reached the under 8 timeout (7:54 to go), the Mullins Center is playing another "look back in UMass history." David Bartley, who is in the UMass HOF, talked about the UMass/HC rivalry from the 1950's. He played against Tommy Heinsohn, HC's all-time leading scorer and former NBA great (and current Boston Celtics announcer, who was at the Mullins Center Oct. 8 for the Celtics/Sixers preseason game!). Score is HC 24, UMass 21...The Minutemen are still shooting 54%, but have 10 less FG attempts than HC. The Crusaders are controlling the boards with 12 to UMass' 8...The loss of Luke Bonner and Matt Hill down low is surely hurting as Tony Gaffney and Tyrell Lynch are the only real big men remaining...Even Matt Glass, who is only 6-7 has had to play power forward.
7:47 p.m. Believe it or not, HC Head Coach Ralph Willard called his second timeout of the first half with his squad leading 24-21 with 8:46 to go...You don't see that often. You have to use one timeout in the first half or it would be wiped off the board, but the second means less timeouts in the second frame for the Crusaders.
7:44 p.m. The UMass students found the Holy Cross fans in attendance this evening and are chanting in unison...There are a fair share of Crusader fans who made the trek from Worcester.
Coach Kellogg and the crowd is getting restless with the officiating...I wouldn't be surprised if he gets his first technical of his coaching career at some point tonight....UMass 21, HC 20, 10:00 1st half
7:42 p.m. With 11:39 to go, it's now 18-16 HC...The Minutemen are still shooting 75% from the field, but have only had eight shot attempts to the Crusaders' 15...Turnovers are 5-3 UMass...Ricky Harris will have three free throws coming out of this timeout.
7:40 p.m. The foul situation isn't going UMass' way to say the least. The Minutemen have already been whistled for six fouls while the Crusaders only one...Coach Kellogg was not happy when Devin Brown was awarded three shots after being fouled outside the three point line.
Colin Cunningham of HC had his face just bloodied up on what looked to be an accidental elbow. It's been intense in the early going to say the least, TIED, 16-16.
7:36 p.m. Coach Kellogg made wholesale substitutions...Matt Glass, Anthony Gurley, and Ricky Harris are in replacing Gary Correia, Tony Gaffney, and David Gibbs...then just like that Gaffney replaced Glass after Glass was called for an illegal screen....HC is making a little run, cutting UMass' lead to 15-13.
7:32 p.m. At the first media timeout, UMass is up 15-7...Some early stats: UMass is on fire from the field, shooting 6-for-7, while Holy Cross is 3-for-8. Chris Lowe has six quick points while Tony Gaffney has four.
7:29 p.m. Anthony Gurley converted a three and the Minutemen are up 13-5 with 15:53 to go in the half. HC Head Coach Ralph Willard had to take a VERY early timeout...You don't see that too often...The Mullins Center is alive with this quick start.
7:27 p.m. A UMass player made a steal of an Andrew Beinart pass...guess who made the play, none other than Tony Gaffney! He dished to Chris Lowe who finished with a layup...UMass is up 6-3 in the early going (about 17 minutes remaining).
7:22 p.m. Matt Goldstein just finished with the starting lineups as the Mullins Center is fairly full considering it's a Wednesday night close to finals. Tony Gaffney again got the biggest ovation, as he is really turning into one of the all-time fan favorites in UMass history...There was no national anthem due since it was played before Game 1 of this doubleheader.
7:15 p.m. The teams just hit the floor for one final time as we are three minutes from tipoff...The starters are in (and there is a change).
First, for Holy Cross.
For Glass, it is his first start of the season and only third of his career.
7:03 p.m. 15 minutes until gametime! The jumbotron is playing another snippet from 100 years of UMass basketball...If you haven't seen these video pieces, you are missing out! A different video will be shown at each home game...Interviews from a ton of different past players to go with game highlights, commentary from the "Voice of the Minutemen" Josh Maurer, and more!
6:48 p.m. The women's game just concluded with Delaware winning by a 56-42 final. 30 minutes are on the clock and Holy Cross is already on the floor, so we're slated for a start time of 7:18.
6:42 p.m. Despite Holy Cross' 3-6 record, it has shown to have the potential to be a dangerous team. The Crusaders llstarted the season with two straight wins, including an overtime victory over Atlantic 10 power Saint Joseph's. They then lost the next six, but did win their last game, 69-63, over Western Michigan. The records of UMass and HC are not indicative of the types of teams they are...We're in for some good basketball this evening.
1:31 left in the women's game with Delaware still on top, 54-41...It's not over yet!
6:33 p.m. The crowd is beginning to increase as the original start time for the men's contest approaches...There are about five minutes remaining in the second half with the Minutewomen trailing 48-38...It looks like the men's game may start a bit later than 7:00. There's usually about 1/2 hour needed in between games, so start time looks like it will be between 7:15 and 7:30...We'll keep you updated.
6:15 p.m. Welcome to the live basketball blog. Justin Lafleur and Jason Yellin here to bring you all the tidbits to make the watching/listening experience complete. Remember, you can watch or listen to the game via UMassAthletics.com!
It feels like just yesterday that we were here for the thriller between UMass and Boston College. This time, the Minutemen fact face another Massachusetts rival as Holy Cross is in town. It marks the second of a basketball doubleheader as the women are hosting Delaware. With 11:31 remaining in the second half, it's Delaware 40, UMass 30. Go Minutewomen!
Holy Cross and UMass face for the fourth time this year. UMass is 2-1 in games against the Crusaders thus far, winning in football and women's soccer while falling in men's soccer.
Back in a bit with updates from the women's game, and more!
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