When the BYU Cougars flew into Massachusetts, the UMass Minutemen knew they would be up for a fight. BYU, coming in at 7-2, scored over 100 points twice and over 90 points in two contests. UMass, who is ranked No. 21 in the country, came into the game a perfect 7-0, and also had their share of high-scoring games, topping 90 points twice, and scoring over 80 three times. In other words, everyone knew it would be a high-scoring contest, and it was exactly that.
Massachusetts took a 52-41 halftime lead and held their own in the second half, pulling out an offensive juggernaut of a contest with a 105-96 victory. For those of you looking at that score, it’s a combined 201 points. With the win, the Minutemen improved to 8-0, and the Cougars fell to 7-3.
Minutemen senior point guard Chaz Williams was the star of the game. He had 32 points on 9-of-14 shooting, including 5-of-7 from three-point range. He was a perfect 9-for-9 from the free throw line, and also added an impressive 15 assists en route to the victory. Five other Minutemen scored in double-figures including Sampson Carter with 20 points, Raphiael Putney with 15, Maxie Esho with 12, Trey Davis with 11 and Derrick Gordon with 10.
As a team, the Minutemen shot a very efficient 55.6 percent from the field, and went 26-for-31 from the charity stripe, both outstanding numbers.
Watching this game, it was very evident that Williams was not only the best player on the court, but pound for pound might be one of the best players in the country. His ability to score and distribute might be unmatched in all of college basketball and Massachusetts’ success stems from his ability to do just that.
The Minutemen will look to continue their perfect start to the season when they take on Northern Illinois on Dec. 14 at 3:00 p.m. ET.