First-Place Vermont Comes Out Firing, Subdues Men's Basketball, 80-67
BALTIMORE—All five Vermont starters posted double figures and the visiting Catamounts defeated UMBC, 80-67, at the RAC Arena.
The win was the seventh straight and 20th of the season for America East league-leading Vermont (20-5, 11-2) , while UMBC (5-20, 4-8) saw its two-game winning streak halted.
UMBC junior guard Chris De La Rosa (Washington Heights, N.Y.) led all scorers with 20 points and was the Retrievers' America East Player of the Game. Vermont sophomore wing Brendan Bald, from nearby Millersville, Md., scored 14 of his 19 points in the first half and earned the honor for the Catamounts.
De La Rosa scored seven of UMBC's first nine points and his traditional three-point play pulled the hosts within 10-9 at the 17:08 mark of the first half. But Vermont went on a 12-0 run, capped by a Luke Apfeld dunk and the visitors surged ahead, 22-9 with 11:57 remaining. They would outrebound the Retrievers, 25-12, outscore them 24-6 in the paint, and build a 45-23 halftime advantage.
The lead increased to as many as 29 points at 65-36 with 9:48 remaining, but UMBC did not go quietly, scoring 32 points in that span. Guard Travis King (New Haven, Conn.) hit three treys and recorded 13 of his 18 points in the final 9:35.
Vermont freshman wing Brian Voelkel posted a double-double with 19 points and 10 rebounds, hitting 12 of 14 free throw attempts.
De La Rosa added six assists and has 320 in his 55 UMBC games, already good enough for seventh place on the Retrievers' all-time assist list. He has scored 20 or more points in 11 games this season. Forward Justin Fry was the other Retriever in double figures with 10 poitns.
Vermont hit 22 of 27 free throw attempts and outrebounded the Retrievers, 41-30. The Catamounts have won seven straight games in the series.
UMBC hosts New Hampshire on Saturday at 7:00 p.m.