Edosomwan's Double-Double Not Enough in 69-63 Loss to UMass

Edosomwan posted a career-best 18 points while turning in his second-straight double-double (Gil Talbot).

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – Harvard and UMass battled back and forth in front of a sellout crowd of 2,195 at Lavietes Pavilion Tuesday night, but UMass pulled away early in the second half and held off a late comeback for a 69-63 win. Zena Edosomwan recorded his second-consecutive double-double, posting a career-high 18 points, going 7-for-12 from the floor, and grabbing 15 rebounds.

Corbin Miller followed with 11 points with Weisner Perez adding seven, as Harvard's (1-2) bench outscored UMass' (2-0), 21-12. Evan Cummins posted seven points and seven rebounds with Agunwa Okolie contributing six points, five rebounds and a game-high four assists.

Harvard struggled from the floor and shot 35.7 percent (20-56) for the game, including a 5-of-27 performance from 3. UMass, meanwhile, got hot in the second half, connecting on 13-of-25 attempts to pull away for the win. Jabarie Hinds led all scorers with 24 points.

The Crimson is back in action on Sunday, Nov. 22 at Boston College. Tip off is scheduled for 12:30 p.m. live on ESPNU.

The teams traded blows early with UMass taking an initial 7-2 lead before baskets by Edosomwan and Okolie put the score at 7-6. An Edosomwan and-1 gave the Crimson its first lead of the night, and the junior followed it up with a short jumper in the paint for an 11-7 edge. Miller broke a 0-for-9 stretch for Harvard from behind-the-arc to regain a 16-13 margin, but nine-straight points by the Minutemen put UMass back on top, 22-16.

Corey Johnson put an end to the drought with his first 3, and Edosomwan brought the crowd to its feet with a two-handed putback slam. Edosomwan kept the run going with a turnaround jumper for a 25-24 edge, and the lead went to 32-28 with three free throws from Tommy McCarthy. UMass closed the half with a 10-2 stretch, however, and took a 38-34 lead into the break.

Edosomwan posted a double-double through the first 15:48 of action, finishing the half with 11 points and 10 rebounds. Harvard took advantage of eight offensive rebounds to score 12 second-chance points, but shot just 2-of-15 from 3-point range.

UMass took a 46-34 lead with an 8-0 run out of the intermission before Miller shook his defender for a 3-pointer to put Harvard back on the board. UMass kept the pressure on and went up 55-40, but the Crimson responded with triples from Miller and Andre Chatfield to pull back within 46-55.

Okolie made it eight straight points with a short jumper, and following an Edosomwan and-1 the score stood at 59-53 with 5:13 to play. The center added a pair of free throws to make it a 59-55 game, and after a drive by Okolie it was a one-score game, 61-59.

UMass answered to go back in front 65-59 and held off a last minute comeback, taking the victory 69-63.

Game Notes: The game was played in front of a sold-out Lavietes Pavilion crowd, marking the first time under Tommy Amaker, The Thomas G. Stemberg '71 Family Endowed Coach for Harvard Men's Basketball, that the Crimson has sold out its first two home games of the year … Harvard has played in front of a sold-out Lavietes Pavilion crowd 31 times since 2010-11 … Zena Edosomwan posted a double-double through the first 15:48 (11 pts., 10 rebs.) and finished the night with a career-high 18 points and 15 boards … Harvard has held each of its first three opponents to under 40.0 percent shooting … Harvard has outrebounded its opponent in all three games to begin the season.