Men's Basketball Tops UMass, 75-62
5-1 • 0-0 ACC
December 1, 2012
AMHERST, Mass. (AP) -- Reggie Johnson scored 19 points and grabbed 13 rebounds as Miami pulled away in the second half to defeat Massachusetts 75-62 Saturday for its fourth straight victory.
The Hurricanes (5-1) led for most of the second half, but a 3-pointer by Raphiael Putney, followed by a driving layup by Jesse Morgan, put the Minutemen (3-3) ahead 52-51 with 8:29 remaining.
But a 3-pointer by Rion Brown started a 13-3 run that gave the Hurricanes a 64-55 lead, their biggest of the game to that point, with 5:01 remaining.
In Miami's 67-59 upset of No. 13 Michigan State on Wednesday, the Spartans clogged the middle to prevent the 6-foot-10, 292-pound Johnson from making an impact. Against the Minutemen, who pressured the perimeter, the senior center had more room to operate. He shot 6-for-13 from the floor and made 7 of 8 free throw attempts.
His six blocked shots were a key part of the Hurricanes' defense, which held UMass to 28.6 percent shooting (18 of 63) including 7 of 32 from 3-point range.
UMass scored the first five points of the game and led most of the first half, but the Hurricanes scored the last nine points of the half to take a 30-25 lead at intermission.
Durand Scott added 15 points and Shane Larkin had 14 for the Hurricanes.
Terrell Vinson led UMass with 14 points and 11 rebounds, while Chaz Williams added 11 points and 10 assists.
Season tickets, mini-plans and non-coference single-game tickets are on sale now, and can be purchase at CanesTix.com or by calling the BankUnited Center Ticket Office at 305.284.2263. The ticket office is open Monday-Friday from 8:30 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Miami Postgame Notes
Starters for the Canes: Shane Larkin, Durand Scott, Trey McKinney Jones, Kenny Kadji and Reggie Johnson. This is the second-straight game Coach Jim Larranaga has used this lineup.
Miami has won four-straight games after starting the season 1-1.
With 19 points and 13 rebounds, Reggie Johnson notched his 17th-career double-double. He has three in five games this year.
Johnson recorded 6 blocked shots against UMass, setting a new career high. His previous career high was five, which he had accomplished twice, the last time vs. FAU last year, in his return from his knee injury.
Johnson pulled down 13 rebounds, marking the fifth game this season he's had nine or more boards.
Shane Larkin scored 14 points for the Canes, marking his sixth-straight game in double digits.
Miami outscored UMass 32 to 18 in the paint.
The Canes shot 73.1% percent (19-of-26) at the line, hitting better than 70 percent in three-straight games.
Kenny Kadji scored eight of his 13 points in the second half, after only posting five points in the first frame.
Miami Head Coach Jim Larranaga
I thought our defense was very solid throughout the game. They are a very athletic team and they are very capable of making a lot of threes. I thought our three point shooting defense was very solid today. We played very well down the stretch by making some free throws, taking it to the basket and it was just a great team effort.
On Kenny Kadji losing his grandfather last night:
I didn't even think he was going to be able to play today. Down the stretch, he stepped up big time for us.
On UMass' run in the second half to pull ahead:
The huge key is not to let them go on one of those huge spurts. When Putney hit those two threes in a row, it looked like they could, but our defense held the next couple of times to get us the lead back.
On Reggie Johnson's performance:
Reggie is a big fellow. With some teams, it's hard to get the ball to him because they crowd the lane, but UMass' style is to stretch it out and pressure you, so it opens up more for him. I thought they did a good job on him, but he did a great job of being consistent and working.
On Johnson being able to hit free throws:
He shot his free throws very well. When you are big guy, you are going to get fouled and you see in the NBA, a lot of those big guys cannot make foul shots. It's nice when you have a big guy who can.