Men’s Basketball Sets School Record in 67-56 Win Over Dayton

Posted: November 19, 2007 at 1:00 am, Last Updated: November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

The Mason men’s basketball team achieved a 67-56 win over the Dayton Flyers in a historic game in front of 7,274 at the Patriot Center on Saturday.

The game marked the first time in school history that the team was perfect at the free throw line, going 21 of 21. In addition, Mason improved to 3-0 on the year, the first time the Patriots have started a season with three straight wins since 1980-81.

A little more than a week after setting a career-high with 17 rebounds, Will Thomas matched that mark and had 18

points for his second double-double of the year. Folarin Campbell added 20 to lead Mason, while Jordan Carter had a career-high 15 points while going 6 of 6 from the free throw line in the final minute.

Dayton (1-1) was led by Brian Roberts’ 25 points.

Dayton took an early 5-2 lead before the Patriots held the Flyers scoreless for 4:35, during which Mason scored seven unanswered points. Campbell had a three-pointer and a pair of free throws, and Dre Smith had a fastbreak layup to put Mason on top 9-5.

Roberts ended the Dayton scoreless drought with a transition jumper from the wing. More than eight minutes into the game, he had accounted for all seven of Dayton’s points. Andres Sandoval became the second Flyer to score when he hit a free throw to make it 9-8.

Mason kept Dayton from taking the lead with a beautiful alley-oop dunk from Campbell on an assist from John Vaughan to push the lead back to three. Marcus Johnson scored Dayton’s first point in the paint on a putback to make it 11-10, but Vaughan answered with a 19-footer to make it 13-10. Dayton was able to tie the game at the free throw line, though, as Johnson made one and Roberts drained a pair.

Another alley-oop put Mason back on top, but Dayton answered again in the paint, this time with a bucket from Thiago Cordeiro. With 7:07 to go in the half, Dayton was able to finally retake the lead as Cordeiro scored inside on a feed from Roberts. But Thomas answered at the other end with his first points of the night to make it 17-17.

After a Dayton offensive foul, the Patriots capitalized on the possession, getting a second-chance three-pointer from Jordan Carter to make it 20-17. The next time down, Thomas made a pair of free throws and Mason took a 22-17 lead, its largest of the night. It didn’t last long, though, as Jimmy Binnie sank a three-pointer from the top of the key to pull Dayton to within two.

But Mason took over down the stretch, outscoring Dayton 9-2 over the final 2:35. Will Thomas had a tip-in, and Dayton’s Stephen Thomas answered with a layup. From there, Thomas had a dunk and Carter hit a three-pointer with two seconds remaining, allowing the Patriots to take a seven-point halftime lead.

The Patriots got inside baskets from Thomas and Campbell to start the second half, and after a Dayton jumper from Cordeiro, Campbell hit a pair of free throws to make it 35-24. A Brian Roberts three-pointer and Chris Wright dunk pulled the Flyers to within six, but Dre Smith’s fastbreak acrobatic layup put the Patriots up by eight. Smith added a drive and Louis Birdsong scored in the lane, giving Mason had a 12-point lead with 13:57 to play.

Dayton did chip into the lead as Roberts sank a trey and Charles Little scored inside on back-to-back possessions to make it 41-36. But Mason’s Cam Long answered with a pull-up jumper to stop the run at 7-0. Then Roberts answered with another three-pointer to make it 43-39. Thomas hit a pair of free throws for Mason and Carter hit a layup off a steal to make it 47-39. His free throw put the Patriots back up by nine with eight minutes to go.

Johnson’s free throws trimmed the lead to seven, and after a Mason turnover, Wright had a putback to make it 48-43. His free throw pulled the Flyers to within four but Thomas answered with a pair of free throws. Mason continued to struggle to keep Dayton off the offensive boards as Cordeiro had a putback, making it 50-46. After Campbell drained a three-pointer, Roberts scored in the lane and Cordeiro hit a free throw to make it 53-49.

That’s when Will Thomas took over. He scored on a hook shot in the lane, then hit a pair of free throws to make it 57-49. Campbell hit a pair of free throws with 1:48 to go and the Patriots were up 10. Roberts and Campbell traded jumpers and Roberts hit a three-pointer to make it 61-54. From there, it was a matter of free throws, with Mason going 6 of 6 from the line in the final minute to seal the win.

Mason will next take the court on Thursday night when the Patriots play no. 22 Kansas State in the Old Spice Classic from Disney’s Wide World of Sports in Orlando, Fla. The Thanksgiving game will be televised on ESPN2 at 9 p.m.

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