November 16, 2013

Corsairs Capture Hampton Inn Classic

NORTH DARTMOUTH, Mass. -- The University of Massachusetts Dartmouth team captured the 2013 Hampton Inn Men's Basketball Classic this evening at the Tripp Athletic Center, defeating visiting Colby College, 79-74.  Freshman guard Ryan Walsh (North Dighton, Mass.) led the Corsairs with 18 points to earn the Most Outstanding Player Award.

UMass Dartmouth (2-0) raised the Hampton Inn Classic Championship trophy for the first time since 2008, when the Corsairs defeated the Coast Guard Academy.  UMD won its annual tip-off tournament for the eighth time since its inception in 1999.

Walsh registered a team-high 18 points, on 6-for-11 shooting from the field, to lead two other players in double figures in scoring.  Junior Jake Laga (Northampton, Mass.) recorded 17 points and a team-high six assists, while freshman Tucker Bouchard (Kingston, Mass.) produced 15 points.  Sophomore Wale Abraham (Lynn, Mass.) and Laga each pulled in seven rebounds, while Abraham redirected four Mule attempts.

Sophomore Chris Hudnut (Chevy Chase, Md.) recorded a double-double for Colby, pouring in 27 points and collecting 12 boards.  Classmate Luke Westman (Newton, Mass.) scored 13 points, while sophomore Patrick Stewart (Bangor, Maine) chipped in with 11 points. 

Colby (1-1) scored the game's opening three points, but the Corsairs used a 10-0 run to take a lead they would not relinquish.  Walsh keyed the surge with consecutive 3-pointers, while Bouchard capped the run with a layup.  Both teams exchanged baskets for the next three minutes before Jon Robinson recorded five straight points to push UMD's advantage to double digits, 21-13, with 12 minutes remaining in the half.  The Mules were able to trim their deficit by scoring eight of nine points during a two-minute stretch late in the first half, but UMass Dartmouth countered with 10 of the final 16 points to take a 40-29 lead into the locker room.

Colby charged out of the gates in the second half with a 15-9 run over the course of five minutes to whittle its deficit to 47-44.  Hudnut led the surge with nine points, while Stewart made a pair of layups.  The Corsairs responded with six of the next eight points to push their advantage to 53-46.

UMass Dartmouth kept its visitors at an arms length, building its lead back to double digits, 62-52, with nearly seven minutes remaining on the clock.  The Mules utilized a 10-0 run to creep back into the ballgame, cutting their deficit to 65-62.

The Corsairs would not let Colby get any closer as the hosts sealed their second straight win from the foul line, knocking down each of their six attempts from the charity stripe.  

UMass Dartmouth will return to action at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 19, when the Corsairs host Brandeis University.