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Men’s basketball aiming for a win in first conference game

The River Hawks will face their first America East opponent this season with a contest against UAlbany at 7 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 5. (Courtesy of UMass Lowell Athletics)

Kathryn Leeber
Connector Staff

Following a close overtime win against Cornell University, the UMass Lowell men’s basketball team looks to start out 2017 with another win against the University at Albany. This is the first game for UMass Lowell in their America East conference play.

Currently, the River Hawks are 5-9 overall, while UAlbany is 9-6.

The Great Danes recently played on January 2, while the River Hawks have not played since December 29. This could give UAlbany an advantage, especially since they are just coming off a 69-59 win over Cornell.

The River Hawks narrowly beat out Cornell, while UAlbany had an easier game. In the River Hawks game, there were 27 lead changes and the game had to go into overtime. UMass Lowell narrowly edged out Cornell with a score of 98-96.

Jahad Thomas led the River Hawks in scoring with 27 points and was able to secure the lead for the team at various times. For his efforts, Thomas was named the America East Player of the Week this past Monday. With 11 field goals, Thomas also tied his personal best during this game.

Thomas is very close to scoring his 1,000 career point and will become the 40th player in the UMass Lowell program to do so. Currently with 962 career points, it is more than likely he will reach this goal in the next few games.

Logan Primerano added 22 points and Tyler Livingston was able to add 13. Both have played in every game this season and continue to provide strong support for the team.

With Primerano coming off the bench, he displays the depth and strength of the entire team, not just the starters. The bench players were able to score a combined 27 points against Cornell, which was higher than some recent games.

In UAlbany’s game against Cornell, the Great Danes held most of the possession. David Nichols scored 16 points for the Great Danes and Travis Charles added 14 points. The team was unable to score many three-pointers, but Dallas Ennema was able to score the team high of three outside shots.

Similarly, UMass Lowell has not shown strength outside the paint, but were able to make 10 outside shots as opposed to UAlbany’s four in their respective games against Cornell.

While it seems that the Great Danes had an easier game, UMass had higher scoring percentages for made field goals, as well as free throws.

This Thursday’s game will be the 15th meeting between UAlbany and UMass Lowell, with UAlbany leading 9-6 in the series.

Thomas and Livingston are projected to start for UMass Lowell, with Primerano being a key bench player. Other projected starters include Ryan Jones, Rinardo Perry, and Matt Harris, all of whom have proved to be strong assets for the River Hawks, especially in assists and free throws.

The game will be available to stream on ESPN3 as well as on the River Hawk Radio Network, 980 AM.

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