UMass Amherst defeated Northeastern on Tuesday, 80-71, giving the Minutemen their third win of the season.
UMass put up a solid shooting performance and were led by center Tre Mitchell, who scored their first eight points of the game and finished with 20 points, six rebounds, and an assist. Junior guard Cal Pierre added to the scoring tally with a career-high 18 points, while freshman guard Sean East had 17 points, seven assists, and four steals. He also made a spectacular full-court buzzer beater shot off of one leg from “the Atlantic Ocean” to give the Minutemen a two-point lead going into the second half.
The crowd roared as East and his teammates excitedly ran off the court and into the locker room.
East from the Atlantic Ocean … IT'S GOOD!
— UMass Basketball (@UMassBasketball) November 13, 2019
The shot went viral and made SportsCenter’s Top 10 plays. Head coach Matt McCall said that when East asked him what to do in that situation, his answer was simple: shoot it.
“He said, ‘What do you want to do here?’ and I said, ‘Try to shoot it!'” McCall said in the post game presser. “I never thought it would go in, but at least try to get one up!”
“Bang,” he added with a smile, mimicking the shot’s perfect swish.
McCall noted that the big shot was made possible due to East’s strong work ethic and dedication to getting better on the court.
“Sean wants to be a great player. He’s always in the office asking for film, always for extra workouts. You can see the fruit of his labor right now because he’s always working. Constantly studying the game.
“That’s what you want out of your floor general.”
To get an even better sense of East’s work ethic, McCall said one person to ask is Celtics first-round draft pick Romeo Langford, who was his teammate at New Albany High School in New Albany, Indiana. The two were a “senior dynamic duo” and led their team to a 100-10 record and a state title during their four years. Langford then went on to Indiana, while East did a prep season at Combine Academy.
“[Langford] probably felt pretty good about Sean throwing him those lobs,” McCall said.