Furious Comeback By Men's Basketball Halted at George Mason, Retrievers Fall, 74-63
Chase Plummer scored all 13 of his points in the second half.
Fairfax, Va.- The UMBC men's basketball cut a 19-point first half deficit to as few as six points in the second half, but host George Mason (6-3) hung on for a 74-63 victory before 3,509 at the Patriot Center.
Junior post Brett Roseboro (Quakertown, Pa./Quakertown) led a balanced attack with 14 points. Junior forward Chase Plummer (Plainfield, N.J./St. Patrick) scored all 13 of his points in the second half and senior guard Ryan Cook (Laurel, Md./Pallotti) also tallied all 12 of his points in the final 20 minutes.
UMBC (2-6) cut a 10-point halftime deficit to 45-39 on a trey by Cook with 13:54 to play in the half. The Retrievers had two possessions with a chance to cut the lead further, but 3-point attempts by Cook and freshman guard Aaron Morgan (Washington, Pa./Council Rock North) were off the mark.
Mason went on a subsequent 6-0 run, and although UMBC matched the Patriots in the final 11 minutes, they could get no closer than nine points down the stretch.
Both teams heated up in the second half after shooting under 36 percent in the first 20 minutes. UMBC hit 17 of 31 attempts (54.8%), including 6-of-13 from behind the arc, while Mason converted on 15 of 26.
The Retrievers were hurt by a poor performance from the charity stripe, misfiring on 8-of-12 attempts. Mason converted 20-of-28 from the line, including 13-of-16 in the final 20 minutes.
After Roseboro scored his second field goal of the half to bring UMBC to within 8-4 at the 16:03 mark, the Patriots used stifling defense and the hot shooting of Wright to produce a 13-0 surge and lead, 21-4 just four minutes later. They extended the lead to 30-11, but the Retrievers, playing without foul-plagued Ryan Cook and Chase Plummer (Plainfield, N.J./St. Patrick) scored the final nine points of the half to cut the deficit to 30-20 at the break.
Cook played only ten minutes in the first half, attempting just two shots as he was saddled with a pair of fouls. Plummer saw only five minutes, going to the bench for good after his third foul with 7:36 remaining in the half.
Wright hit 5-of-6 shots from the floor, including 3-of-4 from behind the arc in the first half. He finished with a game-high 23 points.
UMBC ended the game at 43.9 percent from the floor, hitting 25 of 57 attempts and came within one of a season high in three point goals, converting 9-of-23. Senior guard Brian Neller (Red Bank, N.J./Christian Bros. Academy) added nine points for the Retrievers, hitting 3-of-6 shots from long range.
The Retrievers return to action to play for the fourth time in eight days when they welcome American to the RAC Arena on Thurs., Dec. 6.