Recap: Drexel vs. Massachusetts
Philadelphia, PA (Sports Network) - Chaz Williams scored a game-high 20 points as he helped guide Massachusetts to a thrilling 72-70 win over Drexel in the quarterfinal round of the 2012 NIT at the Daskalakis Athletic Center.
Also scoring in double figures for the Minutemen (25-11) were Terrell Vinson and Jesse Morgan with 18 and 13 points, respectively.
The Dragons (29-7) were paced by Dartaye Ruffin who delivered 17 points and seven rebounds in just 22 minutes off the bench, followed by Frantz Massenat with 16 points and a game-high nine assists, but he also missed several crucial free throws down the stretch and finished the night 6-of-12 at the charity stripe. Samme Givens registered a double-double with 12 points and a game-high 10 rebounds while Derrick Thomas tacked on 10 points.
Despite missing all seven attempts from three-point range in the first half, the Dragons still led by 10 at the break, 41-31, thanks to 51.5 percent accuracy from the floor overall.
Drexel led by as many as 17 points less than four minutes into the second half, but the team then cooled off considerably and watched as UMass put together a 26-7 run in order to move ahead on a three-pointer, 62-60, with 7:18 remaining.
The lead for the Minutemen moved to six points with just over four minutes left and even though Drexel whittled the deficit down to just a bucket, the hosts failed to convert on their last possession.
The Dragons, who missed all but one of their 13 three-point tries, finished the season with a school-record 29 victories but had their 18-game home win streak snapped.
UMass, which now heads to Madison Square Garden and the semifinals of the 75th annual tournament to face the winner of the Nevada/Stanford matchup, is just the fourth team in NIT history to win three straight road tests in order to advance to New York City.Game Notes