UMass gets past URI, gets 6th seed in A-10s
Chaz Williams scored 15 of his team-high 20 points in the second half and also dished out 10 assists Saturday, while Freddie Riley threw in six 3-pointers for 18 points as UMass got past Rhode Island, 75-66, in Atlantic 10 Conference men’s basketball at the Ryan Center in Kingston, R.I.
The Minutemen (19-10, 9-7 A-10) finished the regular season as the No. 6 seed entering the Atlantic 10 championship and will meet 11th-seeded George Washington in a first-round tournament game Thursday at 9 p.m. at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y. The winner advances to a Friday quarterfinal against third-seeded Temple.
Terrell Vinson added 10 points and Cady Lalanne had eight points and 15 points for the Minutemen, who broke away from a 52-52 tie with just over eight minutes to play. Williams scored in traffic and added two free throws, then he and Riley hit back-to-back threes to put UMass up 62-55 with 5:52 left.
Rhode Island (8-21, 3-13 A-10) scored the next five points and still trailed 64-62 when Vinson and Trey Davis made back-to-back triples for a 70-62 UMass lead with 2:18 to go. Despite being called for a late technical foul, Williams made 5-of-6 free throws in the final 1:25 to seal the win.
Riley made a career-high tying six 3-pointers for the second time in three games. In all, UMass hit 11-of-20 3-point tries and outrebounded the Rams 40-26.
Xavier Munford and Andre Malone led URI with 21 and 19 points respectively, while Nikola Malesevic added 11 for the Rams, who finished 15th overall in the league and did not qualify for the 12-team A-10 tournament field.
In its only regular-season meeting with George Washington, UMass lost to the Colonials 79-76 Jan. 19 in Amherst, a day when Marcus Camby’s jersey was retired.
Hockey ends with shutout
Steve Mastalerz stopped all 24 shots he faced Saturday night for his second career shutout and Adam Phillips had a goal and an assist as UMass finished its season with a 3-0 whitewash of Merrimack in Hockey East action before 4,516 at the Mullins Center.
Conor Allen added two assists for the Minutemen (12-19-3, 9-16-2), who were eliminated from Hockey East tournament contention Friday night with their 4-3 overtime loss at Merrimack combined with Maine’s 4-3 win at New Hampshire. Maine secured the eighth and final Hockey East playoff spot and ended the regular season two points in front of ninth-place UMass.
Phillips got UMass started on the power play at 5:08 of the first period, putting in a wraparound pass across the crease by Rocco Carzo. Conor Sheary made it 2-0 at 17:42, backhanding a loose puck past Warriors goalie Sam Marotta, with assists by Branden Gracel and Phillips.
Colin Shea closed out the scoring on a wrist shot from the midpoint over Marotta into the top right corner with 6:58 left in the third period. Kevin Czepiel and Allen drew the assists.
UMass seniors Carzo, Czepiel, Eddie Olczyk and Darren Rowe were honored in a postgame Senior Night ceremony.
Lacrosse falls on road
Despite a hat trick from Kyle Smith, the UMass men’s lacrosse team dropped its third straight game Saturday, losing 7-4 to Bucknell in Lewisburg, Pa.
Zach Oliveri made 13 saves in net for the Minutemen (3-3), who host 13th-ranked Penn State in their Colonial Athletic Association opener Saturday at noon at Garber Field.
Women win in OT
Sam Rush scored the winning goal with less than a second left in overtime Friday as 17th-ranked UMass edged Albany, 9-8, in women’s lacrosse at McGuirk Alumni Stadium.
Rush and Katie Ferris each recorded hat tricks for the Minutewomen (5-2), who also got three assists from Cori Murray. Rachel Vallarelli earned the win in goal with three saves.
UMass hosts Vermont Wednesday at 4 p.m.