Feb. 17, 2009
NORTH DARTMOUTH, MA-The University of Massachusetts Dartmouth's men's basketball team raced to a 56-31 halftime lead and defeated visiting UMass Boston, 108-68, in the second game of a Little East Conference doubleheader at the Tripp Athletic Center Tuesday evening.
The Corsairs, who entered the game ranked 19th nationally in the d3hoops.com poll, scored 17 of the game's first 21 points to take an early lead. Seven of their first eight baskets came on layups, with junior guard Jeff Macchi (Franklin, MA/ Franklin HS) contributing four layups and junior forward Matt Walker (Brockton, MA/Brockton HS) adding three. Walker finished the first half with 16 points, making eight of 11 shots from the field, and sophomore forward Kyle Yeadon's (Hanson, MA/Whitman-Hanson HS) layup with 57 seconds left in the first half sent the Corsairs to the locker room with a 25-point halftime advantage.
Walker led all scorers, finishing with 24 points in 20 minutes. Senior guard Reece Freeman (Cambridge, MA/Rindge & Latin HS) added 14 points, junior forward Brandon Shelton (Cambridge, MA/Cambridge Rindge & Latin HS/UMass Lowell) had 13, freshman forward Tom Henneberry (Lexington, MA/Lexington HS) contributed 12, and Macchi added 10. Sophomore forward Pat Joseph (Queens, NY/Springfield Gardens HS) led the Beacons with 21 points, junior forward Ernst Jean (Malden, MA/Malden HS) had 14, and senior guar A.J. Titus (Roxbury, MA/Canterbury-CT HS) had 12. Freeman had nine rebounds for the Corsairs, and Jean had eight for UMass Boston as UMD out rebounded the Beacons, 40-39.
"Our team worked well together, they played very unselfish basketball, and I was very happy with their effort," said UMass Dartmouth Head Coach Brian Baptiste. "They kept their composure and worked hard despite the score."
It was Senior Night, and it marked the final regular season home action for the Corsairs' three seniors-Freeman and forwards Josh Yucius (Hanson, MA/Whitman-Hanson HS/Massasoit CC) and Dan Boyce (Swansea, MA/Case HS/Framingham State). "Josh gave us some quality minutes," said Baptiste. "Dan, who was injured, gave us a good effort in practice-he's a good kid and a good student. Reece is our team leader and a four-year starter. He's got every accolade in the Little East, and we're hoping he goes out with a bang."
The Corsairs improved to 21-3 and 11-2 in the Little East Conference with the victory, while the Beacons fell to 4-20 and 2-11 with the defeat. UMass Dartmouth will visit Plymouth State Saturday in the second game of a Little East Conference doubleheader. UMass Boston will visit Keene State Saturday.