UMass Minutemen (1-0 SU) at Harvard Crimson (1-0)
Harvard won the battle of the brainiacs on Thursday, defeating MIT, 73-64 at home. UMass struggled to beat Division II UMass-Lowell, 74-69 in their opener on Thursday. New head coach Matt McCall hopes that Minutemen bounce back from a 15-18 season, where they finished 4-14 in the Atlantic Ten.
Hines leads the way in the opener
Junior big man Malik Hines (6-10, 255) averaged just 3.5 points and 3.0 rebounds last season. In UMass’ opener, Hines scored 11 points and grabbed 13 rebounds to lead the Minutemen over the UMass Lowell River Hawks. This was an odd performance by UMass, as they were down by two at the half, yet won by five, holding the River Hawks to 3.2 percent shooting. The Minutemen also outrebounded UMass Lowell by 12 (39-27) and shot 47.1 percent from the floor, but committed 15 turnovers and shot just 3-of-15 from beyond the arc. The Minutemen needed a 11-2 run to make it 66-58 with 2:31 to play to take control
Junior center Rashaan Holloway, who averaged 10.8 points and 5.8 rebounds last season, came off the bench to score 12 points and block three shots in just 16 minutes. A good sign was that 6-2 redshirt freshman guard Unique McLean had 12 points, who had 12 points on 3-of-5 shooting (6-8 FT).
Towns leads Crimson over Engineers
Sophomore forward Seth Towns led Harvard with 20 points on 5-of-10 shooting in a sloppy nine-point home win over MIT on Thursday. Chris Lewis added 13 points and 10 rebounds as the Crimson opened newly-renovated Lavietes Pavilion, while beating MIT in their opener for the seventh straight season. Bu this was anything but easy for the Crimson, who returned four starters from an 18-10 team that lost in the Ivy semifinals. Harvard was up by four at 55-51 with 6:58 left in the game. They needed back-to-back dunks from Lewis to push the Crimson lead to 61-53 and did enough at the free throw line to win the game by nine.
Harvard shot 41.2 percent from the field and 27.8 percent from beyond the arc (5-18). They also made 26 of 36 from the line (72.2 percent), while turning the ball over 14 times.
- 0-4 ATS last 4 after a SU win.
- 10-3-1 ATS last 14 as a favorite.
- 8-2 ATS last 10 home games.
Harvard struggled in their opener but this is a good team with experienced players. UMass struggled as well but that should be the norm this season. With a new coach trying to rebuild the program, it’s going to take some time. Harvard should win with ease.