In a game where the Massachusetts Minutemen were supposed to dominate, they did. 3,148 fans saw the Canisius Griffins draw first blood, but that 2-0 lead would be their only lead. Once Derrick Gordon finished a layup to make it 4-2 UMass it was all downhill from there for the Griffins.
Jabarie Hinds would hit a three pointer with 1:27 left in the first half that would ignite a mini 9-2 run for the Minutemen. That run would give UMass a commanding 46-21 advantage at the break.
Maxie Esho was near perfect tonight with 20 points and nine rebounds. He shot 7-9 from the field and hit on all six free throws. His partner in crime, Cady Lalanne, added 16 points and eight boards of his own. Five of those eight were on the offensive glass. UMass as a team out-rebounded the Griffins 38-28.
The second half was a continuation of the domination as UMass went to work. Canisius was never able to get the game within single digits.
Zach Lewis and Josiah Heath were the only players to reach double figures for the Girffins, scoring 13 and 10 respectively.
The Minutemen must have found their shooting touch during the week and they managed 50 percent from the floor, and hit seven threes.
Derrick Gordon joined Esho and Lalanne in double figures with 11. He also tacked on eight boards and five assists. UMass actually assisted very well as team for the first time with 22 assists on 25 baskets.
Seth Berger missed another game and Jabarie Hines once again found himself starting. Hinds played well dispite his six turnovers, countering with 9 points and six assists. He also shot much better than Trey Davis, who had eight points and four assists but shot just 30 percent. Hinds shot 60 percent and was 2-4 from deep.
The bench was quiet for the Minutemen with Donte Clark only playing 12 minutes and scoring 2 points.Demetrius Dyson continued to do nice things when given the opportunity. Despite only playing eight minutes he recorded seven points and was a perfect 2-2 from three. Add on his three assists and that is exactly what UMass needs off the bench.
While UMass did finally get a win in what seems like forever, its tough to act like this win solves anything. Canisius isn't exactly the type of talent that UMass will be facing in conference so it's tough to judge from this game if they have fixed their problems that arose during that losing streak.
UMass moves to 6-4 with a perfect 4-0 record at home. They have another long layoff as they don't play until next Saturday at 1PM. They will be traveling to the Dunkin Donuts Center to take on the Providence Friars.