Men’s Basketball Cruises Past Huskies, 80-52

Posted: January 14, 2008 at 1:00 am, Last Updated: November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

Cam Long
Cam Long had 12 first-half points via three-pointers, fastbreak layups and pull-up jumpers during Mason’s win over Northeastern.
Mason Athletics Photo

The Mason men’s basketball team had an 18-point lead at the half and opened the second half with an 8-0 run to take the fight out of the Northeastern Huskies, winning 80-52.

The Patriots improved to 11-5, 3-2, and are 8-0 at home on the year, while Northeastern fell to 6-9, 2-3. The Patriots shot 58.5 percent from the field and 45 percent from three-point range in the win.

In front of 6,144 fans at Patriot Center, freshman Cam Long, making his second career start, dominated the game early. He scored 12 of Mason’s first 21 points via three-pointers, fastbreak layups and pull-up jumpers. He made his first five shots before missing an uncontested layup with 5:33 to play in the half.

He didn’t attempt another shot in the game. His scoring allowed Mason to take a 23-13 lead on Northeastern, as the Patriots broke open an 11-11 contest. The lead was eight before Mason closed the half with a 10-0 run to go up 38-20. Dre Smith hit a pair of three-pointers, John Vaughan drained a jumper and Louis Birdsong had a tip-in as Mason made the most of the final 2:27 of the half.

While Long’s 12 first-half points were surprising considering he entered the game with a career high of 13, even more surprising was the fact that Will Thomas was held scoreless in a half for the first time all year. He took just two shots as the Northeastern defense collapsed to deny him the ball. Excluding Thomas’ two misses and Folarin Campbell’s 1 of 4 shooting, the rest of the Patriots shot 82.3 percent in the half.

Long finished with three rebounds and three assists to go with those 12 points. Vaughan added 16 points and became just the ninth player in school history with 100 three-pointers.

Smith had 14 points on four three-pointers and Birdsong had 11 points. Campbell had seven points and six rebounds to become the first player in school history with 1,200 points, 400 rebounds, 300 assists, 100 three-pointers, 100 steals and 50 blocks. Thomas was held to a season-low six points but he did manage to grab 10 rebounds, hand out four assists and finish with four steals.

Mason will next take the court on Thursday when the Patriots play at Hofstra at 7 p.m.

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