Home George Mason held to 42.9 percent shooting in 87-66 loss at #13 Tennessee
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George Mason held to 42.9 percent shooting in 87-66 loss at #13 Tennessee

Chris Graham
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George Mason ran into the Tennessee defensive buzzsaw in an 87-66 loss on Tuesday in Knoxville.

The 13th-ranked Vols (5-3) entered the game with the nation’s second most-efficent defense (.904 points per possession), and showcased it Tuesday, as Mason’s usually potent offense was held to 66 points and  42.9 percent shooting.

Mason (7-2) made a season-best 11 three-pointers and shot 44 percent from deep, but the Vols’ +16 (40-24) edge in points in the paint ultimately proved the difference in the game.

“This was a tough one for us. We know what type of team Tennessee is,” Mason coach Tony Skinn said. “Despite their early season struggles, that’s not who they are. On both ends they were really tough. They took us out of our offense. They were a load in the paint – we’ve been pretty good at defending our paint, but tonight was uncharacteristic of who we are.”

Virginia Tech transfer Darius Maddox led the Green & Gold with 15 points (3-of-6 3FG) and five rebounds in 33 minutes on the floor. He’s scored at least 13 points in each of the past six games.

Woody Newton added a career-best 13 points (4-of-5 FG, 3-of-4 3FG) and grabbed four rebounds in 19 minutes. He’s now a sizzling 14-of-22 (63.6 percent) from three-point range on the season.

Freshman Baraka Okojie added 11 points (3-of-5 FG, 2-of-2 3FG) and dished out three assists in 25 minutes.

Chris Graham

Chris Graham

Chris Graham is the founder and editor of Augusta Free Press. A 1994 alum of the University of Virginia, Chris is the author and co-author of seven books, including Poverty of Imagination, a memoir published in 2019, and Team of Destiny: Inside Virginia Basketball’s Run to the 2019 National Championship, and The Worst Wrestling Pay-Per-View Ever, published in 2018. For his commentaries on news, sports and politics, go to his YouTube page, or subscribe to his Street Knowledge podcast. Email Chris at [email protected].