George Washington, thanks to a stingy defensive effort in the first half, defeats Massachusetts 81-73, improving to 8-8 on the season.
Senior guard James Bishop led the way with a game high 26 points and 5 assists on 8-13 shooting from the field,4-7 from deep. Senior forward Ricky Lindo Jr added 16 points, 11 rebounds and 3 steals, senior guard Brendan Adams posted 15 points and 5 assists while Hunter Dean shined with 10 points, 13 rebounds and 3 steals.
UMass was led by Noah Fernandes 13 points, 6 assists and 3 steals. TJ Weeks added 13 points, 3 rebounds and 2 steals while freshman RJ Luis posted 13 points, 8 rebounds and 5 assists off the bench.
George Washington improves to 2-1 in A-10 Conference play and will next host St Louis Saturday, January 14th at 4pm.
Takeaways from Saturdays win over UMass can be read below.
continued his All Conference level of play, torching the Minutemen with a game high 26 points and 5 rebounds. I respectfully call Bishop the A-10’s James Harden due to the way he can shoot it from deep, break you down off the bounce and finish at the basket as well as hit free throws. Yet, he’s a very good playmaker. He has good court vision and can make the pass anywhere on the court. He keeps opposing defenses on high alert when he has the ball and against UMass, that was no different. Bishop was deadly efficient shooting the ball, hitting 8-13 from the field, 4-7 from 3-point range and 6-7 from the charity stripe, and, with his shooting efficiency, came traps and defenders over helping for UMass which allowed opportunities for Bishop to find Ricky Lindo Jr and Hunter Dean for baskets, or, make the hockey pass to backcourt mate Brendan Adams to do his thing, resulting in the front court duo combining for 26 points on 8-14 from the field. Bishop also did a good job of containing UMass leading scorer Noah Fernandes, holding him to 4-12 shooting from the field and 2-6 shooting from deep, while helping force four turnovers from UMass’s senior floor general. It’s the type of ALL AROUND performance Bishop will need to maintain for George Washington to get their fair share of wins during conference play. Hell of a start regardless.
First half defense:
from the Colonials was truly something to see. As George Washington trailed 14-11 at the 12:10 mark in the first half, they elevated their defensive execution to a level UMass wasn’t prepared for, forcing 8 of the Minutemen’s 10 first half turnovers during the final 12:10, out-rebounding UMass 15-8 during that span and holding UMass to 32.4 percent shooting from the field and 30.8 percent shooting from deep with only ONE free throw attempt.
George Washington defended well, defending with physicality and did it without putting UMass on the line for free throws. GW scored 13 points off UMass 10 turnovers and had five steals and 3 blocks. The Colonials, thanks to their outstanding first half defense built a 14 point halftime lead, 40-26, which UMass couldn’t overcome, ultimately picking up a much needed win.
Front Court Production:
from Ricky Lindo Jr and Hunter Dean was the main reason why UMass never really threatened George Washington. They dominated the paint on BOTH ends throughout the game. Lindo Jr and Dean combined for 26 points, 23 rebounds, 6 steals and 2 blocks, whereas UMass starting front court of Isaac Kante and Brandon Martin, combined for 12 points (0 from Martin), 12 rebounds, 1 steals and 1 block. Total domination from GW’s front court. They played physical, played smart, brought great energy, got to their spots offensively where they could be a threat to score and were everywhere defensively. It’s one of their best games together, and the type of impact they will need to bring game in and game for GW to continue their winning ways.