Amherst, MA (SportsNetwork.com) - The 19th-ranked Massachusetts Minutemen will
put the wraps on a season-long, four-game homestand when they play host to the
St. Bonaventure Bonnies in an Atlantic 10 Conference clash on Saturday
St. Bonaventure has enjoyed a solid start to the campaign, logging an 11-4
overall record, which includes a 1-0 mark in A-10 play. The Bonnies defeated
visiting Richmond in their conference opener on Wednesday night, 84-70, to up
their record in front of the hometown faithful to a perfect 7-0. They are
however, a game below .500 on the road (2-3), although both victories have
come in their last three such contests.
Massachusetts is a stellar 13-1 on the season, and the team is coming off a
66-62 win over visiting Saint Joseph's on Wednesday night, marking its first
A-10 triumph. The Minutemen are also 7-0 at home, and they are an impressive
24-5 at the Mullins Center over the past three seasons, and that includes a
13-4 mark against conference foes.
UMass leads the all-time series with SBU, 39-21, but the Bonnies have won the
last two meetings and four of the last six overall.
St. Bonaventure has done a solid job putting points on the board this season,
netting 76.5 ppg behind typical shooting efforts of .465 overall and .324 from
3-point range, while at the same time holding the opposition to 67.8 ppg and
coming up with positive margins in both rebounding (+6.0) and turnovers
(+2.5). The team boasts three double-digit scorers in Matthew Wright (16.5
ppg, 3.4 rpg, 3.4 apg), Charlon Kloof (12.5 ppg, 3.5 rpg, 4.5 apg) and Andell
Cumberbatch (11.3 ppg, 5.4 rpg), and four others are close to joining the
ranks as they net between 8.6 and 9.2 ppg.
Wright drained four 3-pointers on his way to a team-high 20 points in the
recent win over Richmond, while Youssou Ndoye logged a double-double
consisting of 19 points and 11 rebounds. Cumberbatch added 12 points and six
boards, and Jordan Gathers came off the bench to finish with a line of 11
points, six assists and five caroms for the Bonnies, who shot 48.1 percent
from the floor, and went 27-of-39 at the free-throw line.
The Minutemen have posted similar scoring averages to that of their
counterpart today, as they generate 78.7 ppg while permitting 69.6 ppg, and
they have four double-digit scorers as well, led by Chaz Williams with 15.9
ppg. Williams is far from a one-trick pony however, as he also gets his
teammates involved in the action by handing out 7.4 apg (tied for second-best
in the country). Cady Lalanne (13.1 ppg, 9.4 rpg, 2.6 bpg) is a force on the
inside, while Sampson Carter (11.6 ppg, 4.7 rpg) and Raphiael Putney (10.6
ppg, 4.6 rpg) have produced for coach Derek Kellogg's club as well, and both
Derrick Gordon and Maxie Esho are netting at least 9.0 ppg.
Williams scored 22 points and handed out four assists in the recent win over
Saint Joseph's, helping the team knock down 43.6 percent of its total shots
while goading the Hawks into 17 turnovers. Esho tacked on 12 points and Putney
had 11 for UMass, which outscored SJU in the paint (38-22), off turnovers
(21-16) and in bench points (18-0).
The Sports Network