Xavier Buried From Long Range By UMass, 77-72

Semaj Christon dropped in a team-high 17 points against UMass on Saturday afternoon.

Semaj Christon dropped in a team-high 17 points against UMass on Saturday afternoon.

March 2, 2013

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CINCINNATI - Xavier gave up a season-high 13 three-point field goals and dropped a 77-72 decision to Massachusetts on Saturday afternoon. The loss drops the Musketeers to 17-12 overall and 8-6 in the Atlantic 10. UMass improves to 18-9 and is tied with XU at 8-6 in conference action.

Semaj Christon led four Musketeers in double-figures with 17 points and dished out six assists. Isaiah Philmore dropped in 14 points, while also pulling down seven boards. Travis Taylor added 10 points and matched Philmore's seven rebounds. Behind three made three-pointers, Brad Redford tallied 13 points to round out XU's double-digit scorers.

Midway through the second half UMass strung together six baskets, including four from long-range, and went on a 16-8 run to put XU behind, 61-54. Over the final 11 minutes, the Musketeers were able to cut the lead to three points on four separate occasions. However, they couldn't close the gap any further.

Xavier shot 44 percent (24-of-55) from the floor, but allowed Massachusetts to connect on 49 percent (27-55) of its shots. The Minuteman did most of their damage from three-point territory, knocking down 52 percent (13-of-25). By contrast, Xavier made just 33 percent (5-of-15) of its three-pointers.

The Musketeers finished the game out-rebounding the Minuteman, 41-30, leading to a 17-13 advantage in second-chance points. Turnovers were nearly even, with Xavier turning the ball over 16 times to Massachusetts' 15. However, XU converted the UMass miscues into an 18-13 margin.

In a foul-riddled first half that saw 23 combined fouls called, Xavier went into the break holding a 35-34 advantage. The Musketeers out-rebounded the Minutemen, 26-15, and registered a 13-6 margin in second-chance points. XU connected on just 35 percent (11-of-31) of its shots, compared to 42 percent (11-of-26) for UMass.

Terrell Vinson knocked down four three-pointers en route to his game-high 20 points. UMass also had double-figure scorers in Freddie Riley, who scored 18 points on six made shots from long range, and Trey Davis with 12.

Xavier wraps up a four-game home stand on Wednesday with a 9 p.m. matchup with No. 18 Saint Louis. The contest with the Billikens will be televised on Time Warner Cable SportsChannel.