BOSTON, Mass.—Behind a dominating effort on the offensive glass, UMass Boston men's basketball knocked off Bridgewater State University 81-69 on Opening Night at the Clark Athletic Center Gymnasium.
UMass Boston 81, Bridgewater State 69
(UMass Boston 1-0)
(Bridgewater State 0-1)
HOW IT HAPPENED
The Beacons ripped down 31 offensive rebounds and 65 total for the game, compared to just 30 rebounds for the visiting Bears.
Three different newcomers pulled down double-digit rebounds in the victory. Freshman Malik Lorquet (Sharon, Mass.) led all players with nine offensive rebounds and 17 total boards, in 26 minutes of action.
Sophomore transfer Kevin Nunez (Dorchester, Mass.) tacked on a double-double of 17 points and 10 rebounds. He was an efficient 7-9 from the field in just 19 minutes off the bench.
Freshman Javaris Hill (Lynn, Mass.) was solid as well, posting a double-double of 16 points and 12 rebounds in 23 minutes of action.
Sophomore Michael Boyd (Malden, Mass.) led the Beacons with 19 points and six rebounds and chipped in with three rebounds of his own.
Bridgewater State's Dimitri St. Louis led four Bears starters in double-figures with a game-high 20 points on 9-12 shooting. Rayshon Ward added a double-double of 15 points and 10 rebounds, while Nick Crocker and Ryan Carney chipped in with 13 and 11 points respectively.
The Bears leapt out to a 7-2 lead early on, but were never able to pull away from the slow-starting Beacons. The Beacons cut the deficit to two just before the second media timeout and Charlie Mitchell (Boston, Mass.) gave the Beacons their first tie of the game at 16-16.
The two teams would trade leads for the next six minutes, before UMass Boston went on an 11-1 run. Hill recorded eight of the Beacons 11 points during the run, with three of his four baskets coming off of putbacks. Boyd added on a 3-pointer to give the Beacons a 37-27 advantage with 3:17 left in the half.
Bridgewater State used a couple of late baskets to go into the break only down 46-38. The Bears would keep the momentum going, as they stretched their run to 10-0 between the two halves to tie the score at 46-46 with 16:56 to play.
After a long scoreless stretch, UMass Boston put together a 10-2 flurry to regain their eight-point halftime lead. UMass Boston was turning defense into offense, as they forced two turnovers during the stretch and added a Hill block.
The Beacons added to their cushion shortly afterwards, with a 7-0 run to make it 63-50 with 10:16 to play. Nunez was the principal player during the stretch, as he recorded five of the Beacons' points during the stretch.
UMass Boston never let the Bears within 10 the rest of the way, as the large Beacons crowd got to celebrate the Beacons first win of the season.
BY THE NUMBERS
- The Beacons recorded 31 offensive rebounds and 34 defensive rebounds in the victory. They finished with more offensive rebounds (18) in the first half than defensive rebounds (16).
- UMass Boston hasn't recorded 30 offensive rebounds or 60 total rebounds in a single-game in the last 15 seasons. The closest the Beacons came over the last 15 years was on December 5, 2009, when they pulled down 29 offensive rebounds and 56 total boards in an 85-78 win over Keene State College.
- The Beacons bench outscored Bridgewater State's 50-4. UMass Boston also earned a 58-34 edge in points in the paint and 28-8 lead in points in the paint.
- Five different players made their Beacons debut in the victory. Freshman Julius Goines (Worcester, Mass.), Hill, and Lorquet all made their collegiate debuts in the win.
- The victory snapped a two-game losing streak against the Bears (both last season). UMass Boston leads the all-time series against Bridgewater State 19-18.
- UMass Boston has won five-straight season openers, including all four under head coach Jason Harris. On the opposite side, the Bears have now lost seven-straight season openers.
UMass Boston will host the 1st Annual Paula Titus Memorial Tournament this weekend. The Beacons will host Curry College on Friday at 5 p.m., while Fisher College and the College of St. Joseph's (Vt.) will play in the second game at 7 p.m.