Colonials Fall to Massachusetts in Fourth Straight Loss
A frustrated Colonials squad fell to 5-6 in conference with a 86-75 loss to UMass on Saturday night at the Charles E. Smith Center, continuing on their four game losing streak.
The Colonials’ defense had trouble guarding the Minutemen offense, who are the largest team in the A-10 with 12 players listed at 6’5 or taller. Head coach Mike Lonergan had his team transition between man-to-man and zone coverage, both of which were ineffective again UMass’ outside shooters and inside presence.
“We really struggled to guard them man to man. They’re predominantly right hand team. They beat us right the whole game,” said Lonergan.
The Colonials allowed Massachusetts to shoot a season high 55%. The Minutemen defense held the Colonials to shooting 43% from the field and a dismal 13% from beyond the arch.
“We were 2-15 shooting from three’s after shooting 10-for-20. That’s not gonna get it done.,” Lonergan added.
Seniors Tony Taylor and Dwayne Smith reaching a season high 26 and 16 points mitigated GW’s lack of offensive production. However, sloppy ball handling and poor shots caused the Colonials to struggle in maintaining possessions, allowing 17 points off of turnovers.
“When you take bad shots, you know contested jump shots or get shot blocked that usually leads to dunks and layups and you don’t really have time to get back on defense. All those turnovers really led to a lot of easy baskets. The man didn’t really work and the Zone didn’t work.,” said Lonergan.
Terrell Vinson’s 21 points led UMass’ offense, which had four players score in double figures. While GW was overmatched in size, it was the Minutemen’s 5’9 sophomore guard Chaz Williams who was the biggest threat around the perimeter. Williams, with 15 points on the night and three first half three-pointers, added a 30 foot shot at 7:56 in the first half to pad the Minutemen’s lead to 40-35 heading into the intermission.
Juniors Freddie Riley and Javorn Farrell had 12 and 11 points. Farrell tied guard Jesse Morgan with four assists. Raphiael Putney, who led his team defensively with eight rebounds, notched eight points for the Minutemen.
“We’d come back and get a quick score and they’d come down and hit a three. And when we’re down seven and turn the ball over they’d get an easy dunk. That’s what kept us from closing that gap tonight,” said Taylor.
Junior David Pellom notched nine points, 10 rebounds and three assists in his comeback appearance since missing three games due to a knee injury.
Pellom’s dunk at 8:01 brought the Colonials to within six at 66-60. However, the Minutemen opened up an 11-4 run that allowed them to pull away with the game.
The Colonials travel to Temple on Wednesday to take on the A-10 leading Owls at 6 pm. Bryan Albin and Ryan Melcher will have the call for WRGW.