AMHERST, Mass. – Luwane Pipkins
tied the program record with eight made 3-pointers and led five Minutemen who scored in double-figures as University of Massachusetts men's basketball earned a 95-77 victory over Kennesaw State at the Mullins Center on Saturday. Pipkins finished with a team-best 27 points to go along with three assists and a pair of steals.
added 17 points with five assists, three rebounds, two blocks and a steal. Rashaan Holloway
provided an efficient 14 points in only 10 minutes played while Donte Clark
chipped in 11 points to go with six assists. Tyrn Flowers
made it five Minutemen scoring in double-figures with 10 points on 4-of-6 shooting.
Kendrick Ray put in a game-best 35 points for Kennesaw State as Ray shot 11-of-17 from the floor and a perfect 9-for-9 on free throws. Aubrey Williams followed with 14 points and nine rebounds.
The contest reunited a pair of University of Massachusetts alumni with their alma mater in Kennesaw State Director of Athletics Vaughn Williams and Owls' head coach Al Skinner. Williams was a four-year letterwinner on the football team who graduated with a degree in sports management in 1992. Skinner's No. 30 jersey hangs in the Mullins Center rafters in recognition of his stellar three-year career from 1971-74, during which he was an honorable mention all-America selection. Skinner finished with 1,235 points, 749 rebounds and 320 assists in 79 games played.
The Minutemen separated themselves from the Owls with an eight-point run that staked UMass to a 52-38 lead early in the second half. Holloway opened the streak with a pair of made free throws ahead of a Pipkins 3-pointer. Jarreau ended it with an emphatic drive-and-dunk.
The Owls cut back within six via a Ray and-1 layup with nine minutes, 23 seconds to play; however, the Maroon and White answered immediately before they slowly grew their lead as large as 18 points. Holloway and Brison Gresham
bookended a 7-2 run that also included a Pipkins and-1 series as Massachusetts turned its six-point lead into a 76-65 margin with 7:21 left.
The youngest members of the squad continued to knock down shots into the final seconds of the game as freshmen accounted for 65 points across five Minutemen: Pipkins (27), Jarreau (17), Flowers (10), Chris Baldwin
(6) and Gresham (6).
Jarreau provided the final Minuteman fireworks in a game that included six dunks – all in the second half. Jarreau swiped the ball from Ray with 2:35 remaining and floated a lob pass to the left of the rim, where Flowers met it for his first collegiate dunk.
Two possessions later, Jarreau spun off his defender and left him at the 3-point arc as Jarreau dribbled to the hoop before he flushed home a one-handed slam that brought the Mullins Center crowd to its feet, drew a foul and pushed the advantage to 91-77. He calmly stepped to the line and sank the free throw for his 17th point of the day.
The Minutemen close out play in the Gotham Classic with a Thurs., Dec. 22 contest against Rider at the Mullins Center at 7 p.m. Ticket information is available through 866-UMASS-TIX, the Mullins Center Box Office (8:30 a.m. – 5 p.m.) and online via the UMass Ticket Central.
Follow the team throughout the season on Twitter and Instagram (@UMassBasketball).