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Tennessee (22-12) vs. Massachusetts (24-8)



The Sports Network

DATE & TIME: Friday, March 21, 2:45 p.m. (ET)

FACTS & STATS: Site: PNC Arena (19,772) -- Raleigh, North Carolina. Television: CBS. NCAA Tournament Record: Tennessee 17-20, Massachusetts 11-8. Series Record: Tennessee leads, 2-0.

GAME NOTES: The second Friday contest in the Midwest Region of the NCAA Tournament bracket will pit the 11th-seeded Tennessee Volunteers against the sixth-seeded Massachusetts Minutemen at PNC Arena in Raleigh.

The winner of this game will advance to face the victor of the earlier matchup between Mercer and Duke.

Tennessee had to earn its way into the tournament field with a first-round battle against Iowa, which the Volunteers won, 78-65, in overtime Wednesday night. Tennessee comes into this clash with UMass having won six of its last seven games.

UMass was dropped by George Washington in the Atlantic 10 Conference Tournament, 85-77, exactly a week ago. The Minutemen started the season 16-1, but slipped up a bit in conference play. Still, UMass garnered a six seed in the tournament.

Tennessee leads the all-time series with the Minutemen, 2-0.

Iowa held a three-point lead over Tennessee as the teams headed for the locker room at the end of the first half Wednesday night. But the Volunteers were able to chip away at that lead in the second period, knotting the game at 64-64 at the end of regulation. Tennessee missed a jumper at the buzzer that would have won the game; instead, the Vols shut down Iowa in the extra session. The Hawkeyes went 0-of-8 shooting in overtime, and made just a single free throw, while Tennessee made 10-of-11 from the charity stripe to cruise in OT. Jordan McRae led the Volunteers with 20 points in the game, and Jarnell Stokes tallied a double-double with 18 points and 13 rebounds. Josh Richardson netted 17 points with eight boards, and Antonio Barton contributed 10 points in the win.

McRae's 20-point effort boosted his already team-leading scoring average. McRae enters the contest with UMass averaging 18.6 ppg with a team-high 86 assists on the year. He's followed by Stokes, who averages 14.8 ppg and a team-best 10.4 rpg, and Jeronne Maymon rounds out the trio of double-digit scorers for the Vols with 10 ppg. Tennessee is netting 71.5 ppg this season, and is allowing just 61.2 ppg to its opposition.

George Washington took a 40-31 lead over UMass at the half of the Atlantic 10 Tournament's quarterfinal round, which was more than the Colonials would need. The Minutemen were able to shave one points off that George Washington advantage in the second, but nothing more. The UMass defense allowed the Colonials to hit 50.8 percent of their shot attempts on the day, which included 42.9 percent from 3-point range. Maxie Esho scored a team-high 22 points for UMass in the loss, adding seven rebounds to his stat line. Chaz Williams chipped in 19 points with seven assists, but turned the ball over six times.

Williams enters the game against Tennessee as the Minutemen's leading scorer, netting 15.8 ppg with an incredible 224 assists and a team-best 50 steals. Cady Lalanne and Sampson Carter are the second and third-leading scorers for UMass, with Lalanne checking in at 11.4 ppg and Carter at 10.5 ppg. Lalanne is the team's leader in rebounding with a healthy 8 rpg average to go along with a UMass-high 70 blocked shots. The Minutemen average 76.1 ppg scoring, and give up 70.8 ppg to opponents.

The win over Iowa means Tennessee has some tournament momentum entering this contest. A sixth seed for the Minutemen surprised more than a few folks, and with solid outside play from McRae and inside dominance with Stokes, the Volunteers could make it to the third round of the tournament.

Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Tennessee 73, UMass 70

03/21 10:34:07 ET

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Scoreboard
Local
4th
NOR 1
DUR 1
 
7:30pm Tonight
PIT
CAR
Final
CIN 7
CHC 2
Final
DET 3
NYY 2
Final
SFG 4
COL 1
1st
BAL 1
TAM 2
 
2nd
NYM 0
ATL 1
 
8:10pm Tonight
CWS
CLE
8:10pm Tonight
KAN
MIN
8:10pm Tonight
HOU
TEX
10:05pm Tonight
ANA
OAK
2nd
SCAR 14
TEXAM 24
 
1st
LAMON 0
WAKE 7
 
8:00pm Tonight
MISS
BSU
8:00pm Tonight
TULSA
TULA
9:15pm Tonight
VANDY
TEMPL
10:00pm Tonight
WASU
RUTG
10:30pm Tonight
ARST
WEBER
2nd
JAC 7
ATL 21
 
1st
BUF 0
DET 0
 
1st
CIN 0
IND 0
 
1st
GBP 7
KAN 0
 
1st
PHI 7
NYJ 0
 
1st
MIA 0
STL 0
 
7:30pm Tonight
PIT
CAR
7:30pm Tonight
NYG
NEP
7:30pm Tonight
TAM
WAS
8:00pm Tonight
NOS
BAL
8:00pm Tonight
CLE
CHI
8:00pm Tonight
DAL
DEN
8:00pm Tonight
TEN
MIN
8:00pm Tonight
HOU
SFX
10:00pm Tonight
SDC
ARI
10:00pm Tonight
OAK
SEA
4th
NOR 1
DUR 1