CINCINNATI (AP) -- Justin Doellman scored 16 points to lead six players in double figures as Xavier gave Massachusetts its first Atlantic 10 loss of the season with an 83-77 win Thursday night.
The Musketeers (13-5, 3-1) and the Minutemen (13-4, 3-1) were picked as the Atlantic 10's top teams before the season. A dominant front line has helped UMass get off to its best start since 1995-96, and the Minutemen have already matched last season's win total.Center Rashaun Freeman led UMass with 22 points and 13 rebounds -- 11 offensive -- and forward Stephane Lasme added 18 points and nine rebounds, but the Minutemen turned the ball over 16 times, made just 5 of their 18 3-pointers and put Xavier on the free throw line 22 times. Despite outrebounding Xavier 47-31, grabbing 25 offensive rebounds and scoring 56 of its points in the paint, UMass took just four free throws, none by Freeman or Lasme.With the score tied at 62 with 7:17 to play, Xavier went on a 10-2 run to take control. Doellman scored four points during the run. UMass missed six of seven shots during the run.Trailing 76-68 with 1:20 to play, the Minutemen used a 7-1 run over the next 50 seconds to get back in it. Gary Forbes scored on a tip-in and a layup and Etienne Brower hit a 3-pointer to make it 77-75 with 30 seconds left. The Musketeers made 6 of 6 free throws in the last 23 seconds.After a miserable shooting performance in its last game, a 76-65 loss to Saint Louis, the Musketeers shot 48 percent from the field and made 8 of 18 3-pointers.Gary Forbes had 19 points for UMass and James Life added 10. For Xavier, Stanley Burrell scored 15 points, Drew Lavender had 14, Josh Duncan had 13, Justin Cage had 12 and Derrick Brown added 10. Brandon Cole had 10 rebounds.