The UMass Minutemen defeated the Providence Friars 69-67 in overtime at William D. Mullins Center in Amherst, Massachusetts. The Minutemen improved to 11-1, and the Friars fell to 10-3.
The Friars led by one at the half, but UMass overcame the deficit to lead by as much as ten points in the second half.
A crucial play came at 1:28 in the second when UMass point guard Chaz Williams fouled out. Williams is UMass’ best player, and with him gone, the Friars were able to force overtime.
UMass’ final basket in regulation was a Williams jumper at 3:02, putting the Minutemen ahead by nine points. The Friars scored the final nine points, including a Bryce Cotton layup with 12 seconds to go, tying the ballgame.
In overtime, the Friars missed three free throws, but stayed in the game, and Cotton made a three pointer to tie UMass with 39 seconds to go. On the next possession, UMass guard Derrick Gordon grabbed an offensive rebound, and hit a floater with one second on the clock to give the Minutemen a two-point lead. Providence’s last chance three missed, and the Minutemen survived 69-67.
UMass top performers: Cady Lalanne scored 14 points and grabbed 10 boards. Sampson Carter also chipped in a double-double with 12 points and 12 rebounds. Trey Davis finished with 12 points and three dimes, and Maxie Esho scored 11 points with four rebounds. Chaz Williams scored 10 points and dished out 10 assists before fouling out.
Providence top performers: Bryce Cotton led all scorers with 24 points, and added five rebounds and five assists. Tyler Harris scored 16 points, collected nine rebounds, and dropped five dimes. LaDontae Henton finished with 13 points, seven rebounds, and three assists.
Next game: The Minutemen play Miami (OH) on January 4th at 7 pm ET. The Friars play Seton Hall on December 31st at 2:30 pm ET.