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Williams helps UMass thump Fordham
Amherst, MA (SportsNetwork.com) - Chaz Williams scored 18 points and Raphiael Putney added 13, as 13th-ranked Massachusetts bounced back from its first conference loss of the season with a 90-52 rout of Fordham at the Mullins Center.
Maxie Esho chipped in 10 for the Minutemen (17-2, 4-1 A-10), who wrapped up a three-game road swing with a 58-55 loss at Richmond on Wednesday. UMass turned this into a rout early in the second half and Trey Davis led the reserve unit with 13 points.
Williams and Putney combined to make 7-of-11 from 3-point range for UMass, which finished 13-of-27 from beyond the arc overall and shot 51.6 percent. The Minutemen also produced 26 assists on the team's 33 made baskets.
Chris Whitehead scored 13 points to lead the Rams (8-11, 1-5), who were coming off their first conference win of the season on Wednesday -- a 76-70 home triumph against A-10 bottom dweller George Mason.
Sunday marked UMass' first home game in 15 days and its only home tilt in a six-game stretch. The Minutemen got off to a sluggish start, turning the ball over on four of their first seven possessions while Fordham scored the first seven points.
UMass answered with the next eight as part of a 20-2 run to grab complete control. Back-to-back threes by Williams gave UMass a 14-9 lead and an Esho layup capped the early surge for a 20-9 advantage with just over 11 minutes left in the half.
Another Williams triple made it 30-14 and his free throw in the closing seconds sent the Minutemen to the break with a 40-24 cushion.
UMass came out of the break on fire as threes by Putney, Sampson Carter and Williams highlighted a 17-0 run to start the second half for a 57-24 margin. A 3-pointer by Mandell Thomas ended Fordham's drought five minutes into the session, but the Rams never recovered.
Williams finished with eight assists ... The Minutemen held a 43-32 rebounding advantage ... Branden Frazier scored 12 points for Fordham ... UMass reached 90 points for the fourth time this season, including a 105-96 triumph over BYU on Dec. 7 ... The Minutemen improved to 27-12 all-time against Fordham, including 16-3 in Amherst ... The last four meetings had each been decided by four points or less ... UMass heads back to the road for games next week at St. Bonaventure on Wednesday and at Saint Joseph's on Saturday.
01/26 14:33:24 ET
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