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George Mason drops Paradise Jam finale: ‘Disappointing ending to a disappointing trip’

George MasonGeorge Mason finished up its part of the Paradise Jam with 84-72 to Buffalo on Monday.

The Patriots (2-4) Mason trailed for the majority of the game but was within three multiple times with under 10 minutes to play.

Buffalo (2-4) was able to keep control with good shooting (51.8 percent) and pressure defense (forcing 16 Mason turnovers).

“This was a disappointing ending to a disappointing trip,” George Mason coach Kim English said. “We have to go back to the drawing board. Losing Ronald [Polite III] wasn’t ideal – we thought he was coming along at that position. I’m proud of Devin [Dinkins] for what he did stepping up into the point guard role. I’m proud of the steps Ginika [Ojiako] took down here. But we didn’t get it done as a group, and it starts with our defense. We’ll keep building our habits and building our discipline on our journey to becoming a team that does take care of the ball, gets great shots, contests every shot and limits opponents to one shot.”

Freshman Devin Dinkins played the best game of his young Patriot career, tallying 15 points (5-of-9 FG) to go along with two assists in 28 minutes.

Senior Josh Oduro led the Green & Gold in scoring (17 points) and made 5-of-9 field goal attempts. His partner in the post, graduate Ginika Ojiako, added a season-best 13 points and grabbed six rebounds in 18 minutes.

The Patriots return to Fairfax for the start of a four-game homestand. First up is a battle with new Division I foe Queens on Saturday at 2 p.m. Mason defeated the Royals in the 2020 edition of the Paradise Jam in Washington, D.C.

Chris Graham

I write books, two on UVA basketball, one on pro wrestling, one on politics, which is getting to be like pro wrestling more and more each day. I've finished three marathons, but my maranthoning days are over. I'm also a progressive who voted for Biden, but we need another Democrat in 2024. (Sorry, Joe, and thanks.) Want to reach me? Try [email protected]