Feb. 2, 2010
MEDFORD, MA-Two shots determined the outcome of the men's basketball game between the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth's men's basketball team and host Tufts in a non-conference game at Cousens Gymnasium Tuesday evening.
Sophomore guard Alex Klepadlo (Bernardston, MA/Pioneer Valley Regional HS) rebounded a missed shot by senior forward Brandon Shelton (Cambridge, MA/Cambridge Rindge & Latin HS/UMass Lowell) and laid it in with five seconds left to give UMass Dartmouth a 67-66 lead. On the ensuing possession, Dave Beyel of Tufts connected on a jump shot after time expired, and the Corsairs held on for a 67-66 victory.
"On the last shot, Shells missed a fall away jumper in the lane, and we crashed the boards, and Alex grabbed the rebound out of the air," said UMass Dartmouth Head Coach Brian Baptiste. "On their possession, the guy who got the ball last took two dribbles before he shot, and it was clear that the shot came after the buzzer sounded."
The Corsairs, who trailed, 58-50, with 6:34 remaining, used a 10-2 run to tie the score at 60-60 with 3:48 left. Shelton began the run with a pair of three-pointers, fed junior forward Brandon Stephens (Dorchester, MA/Newton North HS) under the basket for a lay-up, and then hit a lay-up to tie the score. Twp free throws by Scott Anderson and a jumper by Dan Cook sandwiched around a jumper by Shelton put the Jumbos ahead, 64-62. A free throw by Shelton and two more free throws by Cook left Tufts ahead, 66-63, with 2:15 remaining. Sophomore center Lance Greene (Dorchester, MA/Charlestown HS/UMass Lowell) connected on two free throws with 1:22 left, setting the stage for the winning basket.
"It wasn't clicking for us early," said Baptiste. "They have big strong kids who got some buckets inside. We had a little bit of a lead in the first half, then they took the lead in the second half and we started cutting into it. It was good to get a win, and we have to move and get ready for Southern Maine."
Stephens led UMass Dartmouth with 21 points, Shelton added 15, and Greene added 11. Jon Pierce, who led all scorers with 24 points, became the Jumbos' all-time leading scorer when he hit a free throw for his 23rd point. Anderson added 16 for Tufts. Stephens had eight rebounds for UMD, while Pierce had 14 for the Jumbos, who out rebounded the Corsairs, 45-31. UMass Dartmouth forced 20 turnovers while committing 12, and the Corsairs made 15 of 19 shots from the free throw line to 14 of 22 for Tufts.
The Corsairs improved to 14-6 with the victory, while the Jumbos dropped to 5-15 with the defeat. UMass Dartmouth will return to action when they visit Southern Maine in the second game of a Little East Conference doubleheader Saturday.