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The Mass Media

The Mass Media

The Mass Media

A Good Effort to No Avail

Mark Doran tied his career high with 26 points Tuesday night, but the men’s basketball team fell to the UMass Dartmouth Corsairs 92-72 at the Clark Athletic Center.

The Beacons (2-22, 1-12 LEC) fought the nationally, ninth-ranked Corsairs (22-2, 11-2 LEC) valiantly, especially considering they were missing their top scorer and rebounder, Amigo Paniagua. Paniagua missed the contest with an injured groin.

In an attempt to compensate for Paniagua’s 16.6 ppg, Doran shot 11 of 22 from the field and added seven rebounds and five assists. Prior to the contest, Doran was averaging 8.3 ppg.

“I knew that we had to be aggressive because this is the best team in the conference,” Doran said. “We’re down some people like Amigo and A.J. (Titus), so we all had to step up.”

Coach Charlie Titus agreed with Doran’s assessment that aggression was a key to keeping up with the Corsairs and thought it allowed the Beacons to stay close throughout the game. “Overall, Mark understands the situation, and he’s the only senior left in the lineup,” Charlie Titus said. “I never worry about Mark being passive.”

Doran wasn’t the only Beacon contributing, however. Terrell Maddox scored 12 points while Ernst Jean scored 10 to go along with seven rebounds, three steals and three blocks. Running the point in A.J. Titus’ stead was Aaron Jones, who finished with eight points and eight assists.

The Beacons showed a marked improvement on the offensive side of the ball compared to the last couple games, shooting 49% from the field. “On offense, we showed more patience and made better decisions,” Charlie Titus said. “Overall, our shot selection was much better.”

The biggest problem for the Beacons was Corsair center Dan Holbrook, who dominated the paint on his way to 34 points on 13-19 shooting. The Beacons didn’t have an answer for the big man, as Holbrook was left one-on-one with Maddox or Jean and bruised his way to the bucket all night. “We certainly didn’t do a good job helping on their big guy and getting our rotations going,” Charlie Titus said. “When he gets the ball down low, he’s a monster.”

The Corsairs were forced to play a slower-tempo game than they are used to, as Coach Titus had preached transition defense to his team in preparing for Dartmouth. The Beacons never let the game slip out of hand until the final moments. “On defense, we worked hard at stopping their transition scoring, which is what they are known for,” Titus said. “Unfortunately, we lost a little of that focus in the second half.”

Perhaps the best news of the night for the Beacons came following the contest, when A.J. Titus confirmed that he won his medical redshirt appeal with the NCAA and will suit up in 2008-2009. The point guard, who started for the 2005-2006 LEC champions, has been granted one more year of eligibility following a December 18 foot injury that has sidelined him for the season.