Some teams just know how to win. UMass appears to be one of them this season.
When the pressure and mania of March arrives, and it will be here before you know it, not many teams in the country will be as prepared to deal with anxiety of lose-and-go-home as the Minutemen. They seem to be taking every game down to the wire, even against opponents they might be expected to handle easily.
The latest example came Wednesday night on the road at George Mason, which entered the contest with a 7-9 record and 0-2 in the A-10 Conference.
The Patriots held a five-point lead with 41 seconds left but fumbled away the win against the UMass press implemented by coach Derek Kellogg and a group of minutemen who are no strangers to comebacks this season.They stole this one 88-87.
Alright that was an exciting win but can we please just blow out Elon on Saturday? I'm thinking at least a 20 pt win. The fans deserve it
— UMass BBall Report (@theumbr) January 16, 2014
George Mason guard Sherrod Wright committed two turnovers in the final 24 seconds because of that pressure defense, the second of which led to the winning layup from Derrick Gordon with 8 seconds remaining.
George Mason guard Bryon Allen committed one final turnover preventing a buzzer-beater attempt as the Minutemen found a way to prevail once again. It was their fourth win late in regulation or in overtime in the past five games.
Chaz Williams, one of the best point guards in the country, scored seven of his 26 points in the final 5 minutes. He also dished eight assists and came up with five steals. It was one of those steals that led to Gordon's game-winner.
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