Men's Basketball

 
Hoops Welcomes Big East Foe Seton Hall, Saturday

Anthony Gurley has led UMass in scoring in eight of nine games this season.


Anthony Gurley has led UMass in scoring in eight of nine games this season.

Game Information

 UMass Minutemen (7-2) vs. Seton Hall Pirates (3-4)

 Date/Time  Saturday, Dec. 11, 2010, 7 p.m.
 Location William D. Mullins Memorial Center | Amherst, Mass. (Directions)
 Tickets  1-866-UMASS-TIX |  Buy Tickets Online
 TV/Radio

 CBS 3 Now (Comcast Channel 293 in Western Mass)

  100.9 FM WRNX (Western Mass); 830 AM WCRN (Central Mass), 95.9 WATD (Eastern Mass/South Shore)

 Online Video  Watch on UMass All-Access
 Live Stats  gametrackerGameTracker
 Blogs/Twitter   Game Blog | UMass Twitter | JTAM News Blog
 Game No tes  UMass Notes | Seton Hall Notes

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Game Notes

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UMass Welcomes Big East Foe Seton Hall, Saturday
• For the first time since the 2004-05 season, UMass (7-2) is hosting a team from the Big East at the Mullins Center as Seton Hall (3-4) comes to Amherst for a game this Saturday at 7 p.m. The last visits from Big East foes came six years ago as Boston College, in its last year in the conference, topped UMass 67-48 on Jan. 2, 2005. Less than a month earlier UMass shocked defending national champion UConn, 61-59 on Dec. 9, 2004.

• The Minutemen are hoping to rebound from back-to-back losses to Boston College and Maine after the best start in 15 years. At 7-0, UMass had its best start to a season since the 1995-96 Final Four season, when UMass started 26-0 on the way to a 35-2 mark. The 7-0 beginning equaled the seventh-best start in the 102 year history of UMass basketball.

• Prior to Saturday's 76-71 loss to Boston College at the TD Garden, 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.

• Wednesday's game will be broadcast live on CBS 3 Now (Comcast Channel 293) with streaming video on UMassAthletics.com. The UMass Sports Network will carry the game on 100.9 FM WRNX in Western Mass, 830 AM WCRN in Central Mass and 95.9 FM WATD in Eastern Mass and the South Shore.

• The game with the Pirates is the final of the first semester of classes as UMass will have an 11-day break until undefeated UCF (7-0) comes to the Mullins Center on Dec. 22. The current four-game homestand finishes with a visit Boston University (4-5) on Dec. 31. Of note, former Seton Hall signee guard Jesse Morgan will be eligible to start practicing with the team on Dec. 19 and could play in the Dec. 22 game vs. the Golden Knights.

Series History With Seton Hall
• Saturday's game is the end of a home-and-home between UMass and Seton Hall. The teams will played last winter at the Prudential Center in Newark as the Pirates topped the Minutemen, 86-68.

• Undefeated Seton Hall handed UMass a loss last Dec. 7, 2009 in New Jersey. Seton Hall's dynamic combination of Herb Pope (22) and Jeremy Hazell (21) combined for 43 points as the Pirates moved to 7-0 overall. The Hall shot 53 percent from the floor in the first half in building an insurmountable 44-19 advantage. Pope added 15 rebounds. UMass was led by Ricky Harris (15) and Anthony Gurley (15). Both players have scored in double-figures in every game this season. The Minutemen shot just 29 from the floor in the game after 19.4 percent in the first half. UMass missed its first 14 shots from 3-point range in the game. Gurley ended the drought with 14:27 left in the second game as he drained a trey to make it 57-28 in favor of the Pirates.

• UMass and Seton Hall played twice before with the maroon and white winning both times. The Minutemen won the previous meeting, 73-60 on Nov. 29, 1997 in the Great Alaska Shootout Third Place Game. Lari Ketner led UMass with 21 points.

• Back in 1977, the team met for the first time in the NIT Quarterfinals as the Minutemen defeated the Pirates, 86-85 at the Springfield (Mass.) Civic Center. Mark Donaghue led UMass with 26 points and nine rebounds. It was UMass' second-ever postseason win. The first was the 1973 NIT Quarterfinals vs. Missouri.

UMass Vs. Big East Teams
• As started before, UMass will be hosting a Big East team for the first since Jan. 2005. The Minutemen have played 15 of the current 16 teams in the Big East in history -- Notre Dame being the lone exception. UMass has a composite 98-193 mark vs Big East teams. UMass has had good recent success beating Syracuse twice in the 2007-08 season on the way to the NIT Championship game. That marked the first team in history an opponent won at the Carrier twice in the same season.

• Several Big East foes were members of UMass conferences in the past leading to large numbers fo match-ups. Both Rutgers and West Virginia were original members of the Atlantic 10. UConn was in the Yankee Conference back in the 50s, 60s and 70s.

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.

Big City Plays Hometown Team
• With UMass playing against Seton Hall, senior bigman Hashim Bailey will be playing against the school just minutes from his hometown of Paterson, N.J., where he attended Passaic County Tech. He averaged 19 points, 14 rebounds and five blocks as a senior and was named All-Area first team and All-New Jersey third team. "Big City" had six rebouns in 16 minuts last year playing minutes from his home.

Ramped Up Defense
• UMass has played sensational defense this season. UMass is allowing just 64.1 points per game through eight contests. UMass dropped its opponent scoring output in each of its first four games from 67 vs. Rider to 65 vs. Sacred Heart to 57 vs. New Mexico State and just 48 to TCU.

• The shooting defense has been stellar with grit and intensity. Opponents are shooting just .400 for the season with super efforts in a three-game span from Nov. 20-24, limiting New Mexico State to .333; TCU to a dreadful .298 and AIC to .345.

• From 3-point range, opponents are just .313 from beyond the arc.

• The Minutemen are second the Atlantic 10 in turnover margin with a +4.8 per game, forcing opponents into 161, compared to just 118 miscues for UMass.

• Interestingly, UMass' opponents are just .618 from the foul line, one of the best free throw defenses in the NCAA. Better Shot Selection

• Coach Derek Kellogg preaches better shot selection and UMass has shown well this season, making 44.2 from the floor. That includes two games of 50 percent of better with 54.2 vs. New Mexico State (11/20) and AIC (11/24). Anthony Gurley is shooting 58.8 from the floor overall to top UMass.

• From 3-point range, UMass is 30.8, again with several strong efforts. UMass has made more than 45 percent three times: 45.0 vs. Rider (11/12), 50.0 vs. AIC (11/24) and 47.4 vs. Holy Cross (11/27).  Anthony Gurley (53.4) and Gary Correia (42.9) lead the charge in taking more selective treys and hitting them. Correia has actually made nine of his last 16 over six games.

Gurley, A Big Man On Campus
• Senior guard and Boston native Anthony Gurley is third in the Atlantic 10 in scoring with a 20.3 points per game average, 30th in the NCAA. He has led UMass in scoring in eight of nine games this season, with at least 12 points in every game this year.

• Gurley scored his 1,000th career point with his final field goal against Rider and now has 1,153 in his career with 199 coming at Wake Forest and 953 at UMass. 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 58 times in his career and has reached 20 points 14 times, four times this year, most recently vs. Boston College (12/4) with 22.

• 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.

Junkyard Dog Farrell Returns With Vengeance
• After missing the first two games of the season with an ankle injury sophomore swingman Javorn Farrell has returned to the lineup and been an instant impact player. He is averaging 10.9 points and 3.7 rebounds in seven games with double-figures in four of his efforts this season. He notched a career-high 25 points in leading UMass to the win at Quinnipiac (12/1). He had set a career-high with 15 points in his first game, vs. New Mexico State (11/20) and followed that up with 10 points vs. TCU (11/22).

• Even more important is his defensive intensity. Farrell has helped UMass to allow just 63 points in his games.

Ready Freddie Nets Career-Best
• Sophomore Freddie Riley is second on the team in scoring with a 11.2 points per game average. He tallied a career-high 28 with 23 coming in the second half alone in the 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).

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 10.3 points and 5.1 rebounds in nine starts. He was in double-figures for three games in a row with 14 vs. Holy Cross (11/27). Last season, Carter averaged 4.3 points and 3.4 rebounds in 32 games.

Take The Charge! Traynham Draws `em
• Freshman Daryl Traynham has returned from a stress reaction in his left foot and been an instant contributor on offense and defense. The guard out of Upper Marlboro, Md., has drawn a team-high five charges in his six games, with all five coming in his last two contests. He drew three charges vs. Boston College (12/4) and two more vs. Maine (12/8).

• Traynham is also adding to the offense with 5.3 points and 3.2 assists per game in his college debut.

Matt Climbs The Hill, Adds Energy
• Junior Matt Hill has become a key cog in UMass' success early this season. The fourth-year player, who has battled injuries in Amherst, is playing more than ever before and has become a factor off the bench with energy. Hill played a career-high 20 minutes and scored a career-best six points in the win over Sacred Heart (11/17). When he entered the game vs. Rider (11/12), the game changed as he helped lead the 22-point comeback with grit and defense in 14 minutes.

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.

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.

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 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.

• "I am excited to have Jordan join our growing UMass basketball family," said third-year head coach Derek Kellogg. "I have truly enjoyed watching Jordan play over the last few years as he has become quite a player and a person. Jordan has a tremendous competitive nature and an intensity on the floor that will push us to win basketball games. He is a great addition to the building process of UMass basketball both on and off the court."

• 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.

• "It's close to home. They have a good environment and I really like the coaches and players," Laguerre said about coming to UMass. "I've gotten to play with them over the last couple years, and I'm really looking forward to going there and getting stronger physically and as a player."

FORBES IN THE NBA WITH 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 18 games this season (through Dec. 9), he is averaging 6.1 points.

• "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.

 

Close To Home
• UMass's schedule in 2010-11 is a local one for fans as the Minutemen will play 21 games within 90 miles of Amherst. In addition to the 14 games at the Mullins Center, UMass will host Holy Cross at the Curry Hicks Cage on Nov. 27 for a 15th game in Amherst.

• UMass will also play three games down I-91 in Springfield. Two in the Basketball Hall of Fame Tip-Off on Nov. 20 and 22 along with a regular-season home game vs. La Salle on Jan. 15. UMass has played home games in Springfield in each of the last three seasons since Kellogg was hired in 2008.

• The Minutemen will play at the TD Garden for the second year in a row, against Boston College on Dec. 4 as part of the Boston Tip-Off Classic. That game will air on Comcast SportsNet New England as part of a doubleheader with Drexel, coached by former Minuteman bench boss Bruiser Flint, battling Northeastern in the first game. The event will benefit the Boston Children's Hospital.

• UMass also plays two road games within 90 miles at Quinnipiac in Hamden, Conn. on Dec. 1 and at Central Connecticut on Jan. 3 in New Britain, Conn.

 

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.

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 this and 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 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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