The Paul Westhead era at George Mason began the way it was expected to Saturday night when the Patriots set a school record for points in a 129-119 victory over Troy State.
Kenwan Alexander, who averaged three points per game last season, had 29 points and 12 rebounds to lead George Mason, which went 7-21 each of the last two years. Westhead, known for his run-and-gun style at Loyola Marymount, took over at George Mason in April and had the Patriots running in the opener as if he had been there for years.
The loss was the first game in Division I for Troy State, which plays the same style and set an all-division record two seasons ago with 258 points in one game.
George Mason averaged 68 points last season, and that’s what it had at halftime as Troy State led by four at the break. The Patriots trailed, 81-77, with 16:46 left before going on a 12-0 run with Donald Ross ending it with consecutive three-point baskets.
Two more three-point baskets by Ross keyed a 12-0 run that gave George Mason a 106-87 lead with 10:08 to play.
Ross, who averaged nine points last season, finished with 23 on seven-for-11 shooting from three-point range. The Patriots were 12 of 37 from three-point range, with freshman Riley Trone making three of 20.
Seven players scored in double figures for the Patriots, who outrebounded the Trojans, 83-58. Khyl Horton led George Mason with 18 rebounds and Andrew Fingall had 16.
George Mason’s previous high game was 126 points against Gallaudet in 1975.