NEWARK, Del. - The George Mason men's basketball team could not overcome a
double-digit first half deficit, as the
Patriots dropped a 65-60 decision on Wednesday night at the Bob Carpenter
Center. Mason (18-6, 10-2 CAA) saw its six-game win streak come to an end, as
the Blue Hens (11-12, 6-6) earned a season split in the series.
Senior Ryan Pearson led the Mason offense with a game-high
25 points and had a team-best eight rebounds. Joining him with double-digit
scoring was sophomore Sherrod Wright and senior Mike Morrison, who chipped in
12 and 11 points, respectively. Kyle Anderson led the Blue Hens with 21 points,
and Jamelle Hagins led a 43-33 UD advantage off the glass with nine boards.
Even at 10-all, the Blue Hens embarked on a 13-1 run which
moved their lead to double-digits at 23-11. Mason was kept without a field goal
for more than five minutes, until a Morrison jumper banked in just inside the
10-minute mark. The UD lead would grow as large as 17 in the first half, before
the Patriots countered with nine in a row to move the margin back to single
digits. Copes drained a jumper with less than one second remaining to set the
halftime margin of 32-24.
Pearson had seven points in the run, leading the Mason
offense with 10 points overall at the break. Morrison had nine points, as the
Patriots were out-shot by a 44.4-to-33.3 percent margin and outrebounded 21-16.
Anderson paced the Blue Hens with 12 points, all of which coming from beyond
the 3-point arc.
UD jumped out with the first five points of the half, but
the Patriots outscored the Blue Hens 11-4 over the next four-plus minutes to
cut the deficit to six at 41-35. It got even closer, after a pair of Wright
free throws cut it to 46-44 Blue Hens with 9:20 left in the half. Delaware
responded with a 9-2 run which pushed the margin out to nine. The Blue Hens
would match it at 60-51 inside of a minute remaining, before the Patriots used
staunch defense to force turnovers and cut it to three at 63-60. A pair of
Hagins free throws sealed the victory for UD, though.
Mason will look to return to the win column with a sold-out
Homecoming date with Old Dominion on Saturday afternoon. Tip time on ESPNU is
set for 5 p.m.