|Men's Basketball Stopped at Northeastern, 71-51|
BOSTON - The George Mason men's basketball team traveled to Colonial Athletic Association leader Northeastern on Sunday night, and the Huskies were able to defend their home court, taking a 71-51 victory over the Patriots at Matthews Arena. The win moves the Huskies to 8-0 in conference play and 13-7 overall, while the Patriots dropped to 5-3 in CAA action, 12-8 overall.
Redshirt junior Vertrail Vaughns led the Patriots offense with 13 points, tying a season-high, while classmate Sherrod Wright added 12 points. NU, which held a 53.2-to-33.9 percent field goal shooting advantage, saw four players reach double figures led by 15 points from Quincy Ford and Joel Smith. Mason's Marko Gujanicic tied a game-high with seven rebounds, matched by the same from Ford. Overall, the Huskies out-rebounded the Patriots 36-29.
The Patriots suffered from sluggish field goal shooting from the outset, connecting on just one of their first 13 attempts, a layup by Allen at the 16:22 mark. Gujancic added a pair of free throws at the 12:38 mark, ending a 7-0 Huskies run that put them ahead 9-2. Mason's offense started to heat up after the opening 10 minutes, as a Vaughns bucket plus the bonus gave the Green and Gold its first and only lead of the half at 18-17.
NU closed out the half on a 12-4 run to take a 29-21 advantage into the locker room, again stymying the Mason offense as Vaughns' jumper with 1:34 left was the only Patriot field goal in the final five minutes.
He led the Patriots in the first half with six points, as they were out-shot by a 50-to-26 percent margin from the field. Leading the way for the Huskies was Joel Smith who had nine points. NU also won the rebounding battle in the first 20 minutes, 20-18, but committed three more turnovers.
In the second half, the Patriots quickly cut the deficit to four before six in a row by NU pushed the margin back to double digits. They would go on to lead by as many as 13 before the Patriots mounted another run, this time an 11-2 scoring spree, as a Wright 3-pointer at the 6:34 mark cut the gap to 49-45.
That would be as close as the Patriots would get, though, as the Huskies closed out the game with a 22-6 run to complete the victory and the season sweep of the Patriots.
The Patriots will be back in action on Thursday night, hosting preseason conference favorite Drexel at 7 p.m.