No. 21 UMass downs Eastern Michigan
Ypsilanti, MI (SportsNetwork.com) - Raphiael Putney had 15 points to lead five Massachusetts scorers in double figures and the No. 21 Minutemen beat Eastern Michigan 69-57 on Tuesday in their first game as a ranked team in 15 years.
Trey Davis added 13 points and Chaz Williams and Cady Lalanne scored 12 apiece for UMass (7-0), which is off to its best start since going 7-0 in 2010-11.
Derrick Gordon chipped in 10 points for the Minutemen, who had been idle since beating Clemson on Nov. 24 to win the Charleston Classic.
They were ranked No. 24 last week -- their first appearance in the Associated Press Top 25 since the week of Nov. 17-23, 1998. They climbed three spots to No. 21 this week.
Tuesday marked UMass' first true road game this season and its ninth straight non-conference road win, though it had to pull away late in a close game to beat the Eagles.
Karrington Ward and Daylen Harrison both scored 11 points and Da'Shonte Riley had 10 to lead the Eagles (5-2), who were coming off their first loss of the season last Wednesday to No. 3 Kentucky after going 5-0 for the first time in 17 years.
EMU led by as many as seven points twice late in the first half and went to the break ahead 35-31 after shooting 57.7 percent.
After Harrison scored to make it a six-point lead, the Minutemen scored 18 of the next 25 points and took a 49-44 lead on Lalanne's dunk with around 9 1/2 minutes left.
UMass never trailed after that, though the game stayed close until an 8-0 run by the Minutemen stretched a five-point lead to 13 with 1:27 remaining.
UMass plays BYU Saturday in the Hall of Fame Holiday Classic in Springfield, Mass. ... Eastern Michigan plays at Purdue on Saturday ... It was the third all-time meeting between the teams. UMass is 2-0 with wins in 1972 and this past Jan. 5 in Amherst.
12/03 21:24:26 ET
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