Last Wednesday night the George Mason’s Men’s Basketball team pulled off a suspenseful 80-75 victory over UMass. This win marks the seventh straight game that the Patriots have beaten the Minutemen in recent memory. Mason, now 9-3 in the A10 Conference struggled mightily in the first half, losing 8-3, Mason would score 5 unanswered points to tie the game for the first of several times. At the end of the first half, Mason tied UMass 26-26. That was just a third of the epic game that took place at Eagle Bank Arena.
During the second half, both teams managed to pull off some fireworks offensively after the defensive chess match that was the first half. Mason had 5 players in double figures with Senior Otis Livingstone II leading the way with 21pts and 5 assists. Every time Mason looked like they were going to pull away, the Minutemen would catch up just as quickly as Mason started to take control. “I was never calm until the last 3 seconds of Overtime,” Mason’s Head Coach Dave Paulsen said. UMass had a chance to make things even more intense on their final Free throw attempts. But they missed both shots which led to a Mason rebound by Sophomore Javon Greene who then proceeded to seal the game making a pair of free throws on his own.
As of this past weekend, the Patriots fell to St. Bonaventure on the road 79-56, with the same offensive struggles from last Wednesday’s game. The Patriots we’re outscored 42-25 in the first half but made a valiant effort in the second half that sadly came up short. The Patriots will have a week to regroup before this week’s Homecoming matchup with A10 Rival Duquesne this Saturday at Eagle Bank Arena. Mason desperately needs to win in order to keep pace with VCU and Davidson in their conference. Duquesne beat GW last Saturday 85-69, so Mason will have to rise to the occasion on Saturday in order to keep things interesting for Mason Nation. The gauntlet has been thrown and now Mason needs to be strong to keep their postseason dreams alive.