With 1.9 seconds left in the game Chris De La Rosa made a left handed jumper to give UMBC a 59-57 victory over American, breaking a nine-game losing streak for their first of the season.
De La Rosa had a very questionable start to the season. While he was doing well passing the ball out, he made way too many bad shots, this time however he shot 50.0% from the field and scored 11 points with five rebounds and four assists.
While Robbie Jackson has made UMBC fans pull their hair out at times, it is clear the difference he makes. When he was limited in time against Toledo, and out against Rider, one could see that having him in the paint could have made a big difference and now that he’s back the team played great defensively, limited the amount of shots taken in the paint by American, and got the win. But not only did he contribute heavily on defense, he recorded a double-double with 12 points and 10 rebounds, six of which were offensive. He also recorded one block and a steal, passed out two assists and hit 45.5% of his shots.
The team was led by Chauncey Gilliam with 17 points and were graced by another great performances by Matt Spadafora. Spadafora was coming off the best game of his career against Rider and came up with 10 points and four rebounds and shot 62.5% from the field. He also had two steals and an assist.
While the teams second-leading scorer, Shawn Grant, was held empty in the game, Nick Groce added five points and Adrian Satchell scored four points and grabbed four rebounds. Groce scored the only points off the bench, but the defense stepped up big and only allowed American to shoot 35.2% from the field and 23.8% from three point range.
Clearly, it was a much needed win. The first win is always the best, and when a team is 0-9, that win becomes so much better. But through the rough start the team did not quit. They have showed a lot of improvement in each game this season and finally put it all together for a win.
Don’t expect UMBC to make a streak out of it though, while no win is out of the question they will have a very tough challenge against the 9-1 Virginia Tech Hokies in just two days.