Showing posts with label Providence Friars. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Providence Friars. Show all posts

Friday, December 07, 2012

Providence Whips Rhode Island on LaDontae Henton's 21 and 17

College Hoops Player of the Day for Thursday, December 6, 2012

The Providence Friars are off to a solid start again, winning their seventh game against two losses (by two points to UMass and three points to Penn State) with a 72-57 whipping of visiting Rhode Island.

Sophomore forward, LaDontae Henton, who has scored in double figures in every game this season, racked up his fourth double-double with 21 points and 17 rebounds for the Friars.

Henton couldn't connect from the outside, missing all three of his attempts from beyond the arc, but was deadly inside, making nine of 13 shots and going 3-for-3 throm the foul line. The 6'6" Henton wiped the boards clean, grabbing four on the offensive end. He also had four steals as the Friars exploded for 45 second half points after taking a 27-26 lead into the break.

Providence outrebounded the Rams, 41-28 and made 24 of 26 free throws. Only four players scored for the Friars, all in double figures, led by Kadeem Batts' game-high 23.

Providence struggled in the Big East last season, finishing with an overall 15-17 record. They went 11-2 in non-conference play, but were just 4-15 within the conference.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Kadeem Batts, Bryce Cotton Combine for 51 Points as Providence Rolls

College Hoops Player of the Day for Monday, November 12, 2012

There are so many good teams and good players in the Big East, it's tough to keep track of them all, but keep an eye on Kadeem Batts and Bryce Cotton the inside-outside duo for the Providence Friars who combined for 51 of their team's points in an 81-49 thrashing of Bryant College.

The Friars are 2-0 and will probably be 11-0 or 10-1 or something like that before Big East play gets underway in late December, early January.

Cotton a 6'1" junior guard, scored 24 points on 6-for-13 shooting - including 4 of 7 from 3-point range - made 8 of 11 free throws, ripped down 11 boards and handled six assists, while his inside partner, Batts, was 12-for-15, scoring 27 points with 9 rebounds and 2 assists.

The 6'8" Batts, also a junior, fell just short of a double-double, a feat he accomplished just twice last season in limited playing time. The Friars were just 4-14 in Big East play last season, but they soldier on in the nation's most rigourous conference.


Cody Zeller, Indiana: 8-12, 22 points, 9 rebounds
Trey Burke, Michigan: 8-19, 22 points, 3 rebounds, 9 assists
Garrick Sherman, Notre Dame: 8-10, 22 points, 9 rebounds
Fuquan Edwin, Seton Hall: 7-19, 23 points, 10 rebounds

Tuesday, December 06, 2011

Providence Tops Brown as Vincent Council Misses Triple-Double by One Rebound

College Hoops Player of the Day for Monday, December 5, 2011

There are few constants in the wide-open world of college hoops, but one dogmatic dictum is that Ivy League colleges are generally no match for teams from the Big East (with a tip of the hat to Harvard and their first ever Top 25 ranking, this week).

This condition has been thoroughly tested in the past, but Ivy League coaches and ADs still like to schedule the games just to use as a measuring stick in evaluating their squads, such as Brown did Monday night when they took on cross-town rival, Providence at the Dunkin' Donuts Center, and dunkin' was part of the Friars' agenda as they whipped the Bears handily, 80-49 before a sparse crowd of just over 5,000.

With the result never in question, Providence took an early lead, expanded their advantage to 15 points at the half and cruised to an easy victory as three starters played more than 35 minutes. One of those starters was Providence's assist and scoring leader, junior point guard, Vincent Council, who did some stat-padding by coming within a whisker of his first triple-double in 37 minutes of court time.

Council tossed in a game high 21 points on 9-for-16 shooting with a pari of treys, dished out 11 assists and ripped down nine rebounds as the 7-2 Friars geared up for Big East play which begins - for them - on December 27 at St. John's.

A three-year starter, Council has improved with each season, bettering his scoring average (10.3, 13.7, 19.1) and assist totals (4.5, 5.9, 6.3) every year.

The Friars, one of the few Big East teams with losing records over the past two seasons - 12-19 in 09-10 and 15-17 in 10-11 - are off to a solid start and hoping to play at least .500 ball through the conference schedule. With Council directing the attack, they appear poised for an improved season in basketball's most competitive conference.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Marshon Brooks Scores 52, But Providence Falls to Notre Dame, 94-93

College Hoops Player of the Day for Wednesday, February 23, 2011

When the NCAA tournament begins in about three weeks, the Providence Friars won't be there, nor will their superstar forward, Marshon Brooks, but Brooks will have left an indelible mark on this season already, as the most talented player in the country, but without much of the accolade.

In their 94=93 home loss to Notre Dame, Brooks set a season-high NCAA scoring mark that isn't likely to be broken, scoring 52 points on 20-for-28 shooting, including 6 of 10 from beyond the arc and 6 of 10 from the foul line.

Not only did Brooks single-handedly keep the Friars in the game, but he shattered the Big East single game all time record of 48, set by another Friar from 1991, Eric Murdock and tied the school record with the most points ever scored against the Fighting Irish.

For Brooks and the Friars, however, the game will go into the books as another narrow defeat, their sixth loss by four points or fewer. Notre Dame's Ben Hansbrough scored a season=high 32 points and Tim Abromaitis pumped in 28, but neither of them were sure they'd be leaving Providence's Dunkin' Donuts Center with a win until the final second of the game. Brooks had kept the Friars close with a dazzling array of shots - scoring 15 points in the final 2:39 - and Abromaitis, after missing the first of two free throws, intentionally missed the second with one second left, leaving Brooks with nothing but a desperation heave from three-quarter court that sailed over the far-off backboard.

When the awards come out for college player of the year, Brooks won't be mentioned, because his team has a poor record (14-14, 3-12 Big East), but his numbers speak for themselves: 25.4 points per game (49.6%), good for second in the nation behind BYU's Jimmer Fredette. Maybe, on a better team, with more scoring options, he'd score less. But then again, he might score even more.

Notre Dame's win made them 22-5 on the season and 11-4 in the Big East, a game and a half behind front-running Pitt, over whom the Irish already have a win. This team is ready for tourney time.

NOTABLE: #1 Duke didn't falter in their first game as the new top dog, dropping #23 Temple, 78-61, at Cameron Indoor. There were, however, two Tp 25 upsets. #11 Georgetown lost at home to Cincinnati, 58-46, and #22 Kentucky lost in overtime at Arkansas, 77-76. Both Georgetown and Kentucky look like shoo-ins for the tournament, but the win by Cincinnati (22-6, 9-6) probably punched their ticket to March Madness.

Sunday, February 06, 2011

Brooks' 43 Not Enough to Topple Hoyas

College Hoops Player of the Day for Saturday, February 5, 2011

Providence forward Marshon Brooks will surely be playing in the NBA next season; unfortunately, he and his teammates aren't likely to be in the field of 68 in this year's NCAA tournament.

Brooks blistered the Georgetown defense for 43 points - tying him for the second most points scored in a single game this season with BYU's Jimmer Fredette (Fredeette scored 47 earlier this season in a win over Utah).

Sadly, Brooks' heroic play wasn't enough to topple the #13 Hoyas, who eked out an 83-81 victory, getting to 7-4 in the Big East, mid-pack in the nation's most potent conference. Providence dropped to 3-8 in conference, but are 14-10 overall.

Brooks put on a memorable show for those in attendance, hitting 17 of 28 shots with a pair of three pointers. He was also 7-for-10 from the foul line and had 10 rebounds - 5 offensive - for his seventh double-double of the season.

With seven regular season games left of the Friars' slate, Brooks has a chance to catch Fredette, the scoring machine from BYU, who leads the nation at 27.6 points per game. Brooks is third at 24.1, just behind Northern Illinois' Xavier Silas, with 24.2. Whether he does or not, Brooks will be one of the top players most of America knows little to nothing about.

NOTABLE: Rank 'em: The Florida Gators held off a furious late rally by #10 Kentucky, holding on for the narrow home win, 70-68. Unranked Florida leads the SEC East at 7-2 and knocked off Vanderbilt (also ranked, #23) earlier this week. Look for them at about #18 in the AP Poll come Monday afternoon.

Separation Saturday: Unlike previous weekends, this one was devoid of the multitude of upsets that have been occurring throughout the college hoops season. Only two ranked teams besides Kentucky - #16 Texas A&M - 76-74 overtime losers to Baylor - and #20 Washington, who lost at Oregon, 81-76, suffered defeat on Saturday.

All other ranked teams won, many by double digits. In the one game matching up two ranked opponents, #12 Villanova cruised past #25 West Virginia, 66-50.

Tuesday, December 07, 2010

Marshon Brooks, Vincent Council Ready Providence for Big East

College Hoops Player of the Day for Monday, December 6, 2010

There hasn't been much to get excited about in Providence since the Whalers left town, as the Friars have become sort of a whipping boy for the elite teams in the Big East over the years, but they have their moments and a share of some of the top talent in the league.

One such player is Marshon Brooks, who has been honing his skills along with his Providence teammates in anticipation of Big East play by beating up on regional opposition, such as Monday night's 91-64 rout of Brown University.

In that contest, Brooks, a prolific scorer, averaging 21.4 points per game, poured in a career-high 33 points on 14-for-21 shooting, including 4 of 8 three-pointers. Amazingly, he only went to the foul line twice, making one. Brooks snatched 8 rebounds and also made four steals.

Teammate Vincent Council had one of the best games of his college career, scoring 19 points and dishing 16 assists, Council, a sophomore, has scored in double figures in each game this season and is tied with Chris Wright of Georgetown for second in the conference in assists, at 6.8 per game. Syracuse's Scoop Jardine holds a narrow lead at 6.9.

The win was the fifth in a row for the Friars, improving to 9-1 on the season. Their only loss was to LaSalle, 84-73.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Providence's Peterson Goes for 38 and 16 in Loss

College Hoops Player of the Day for Tuesday, March 9, 2010

With all the conference tournaments underway, normally, the player of the day would go to a player who was a large factor in his team moving on, but the effort by Providence sophomore Jamine Peterson was just too good to be overlooked. Even though the Friars ended the season by losing 11 in a row and were ousted from the Big East tournament on Tuesday by Seton Hall, 109-106, Peterson did not let the team's woes weigh on him. In fact, he produced his best game of the season, a monster effort, resulting in 38 points and 16 rebounds (10 offensive).

The 6'6" force of nature hit 14 of 26 shots, including 1-for-5 from 3-point range, and 9 of 10 free throws. It was his 16th double-double of the season, and what makes his season and his final game (will he go pro?) so special is that he dd his work without much help. Providence is 12-19. Peterson led them in both points and rebounds. If he decides to return for another year, the Friars should fare better, though in the highly competitive Big East, nothing is certain.

Notable: Three more teams earned NCAA automatic bids on Tuesday by winning their respective conference tourneys. Butler thumped Wright State in the Horizon League final, 70-45; North Texas dropped Troy, 66-63, to capture the Sun Belt tournament; and, Oakland laid claim to the Summit League championship with a 76-64 victory over IUPUI.

Friday, March 05, 2010

Gibbs Beats Buzzer as Pitt Escapes Friars

College Hoops Player of the Day for DAY, Month, 2010

It wasn't supposed to be a close game. After all, Providence had lost 8 straight games and #17 Pitt was on its home court. But the way the game turned out, the Panthers needed a near-mid-court heave at the buzzer from their best shooter, Ashton Gibbs, to finally take down Providence, 73-71.

Gibbs' trey gave him a game-high 25 points. Better yet, the win gave Pitt a double bye in next week's Big East tournament, and, with a win against Rutgers (another game Pitt is "supposed" to win easily) and a Villanova loss to West Virginia on Saturday would make Pitt the #2 seed in the tourney, an enviable position, ensuring that they would not have to face Syracuse unless it was in the final.

Gibbs, who hit 9 of 13 shots and 6 of his 9 3-point attempts, was not alone in his starring role. Teammate Jermaine Dixon poured in a career-high 24 points and added 12 rebounds for his first collegiate double-double. Providence was kept in the game largely due to the effort of their 6'6" sophomore stud, Jamine Peterson, who scored 24 points and hauled in 18 boards for his 15th double-double of the season. Despite the Friars being just 4-13 in the Big East, Peterson should get plenty of votes as conference player of the year. He has dominated the lane in just about every game this season.

Notable: Michigan State kept its hopes alive for a share of the Big Ten title Thursday night with a 67-65 win over Penn State in which the Spartans nearly blew a 10-point lead late in the game. The Spartans need a win over Michigan to tie Ohio State and Purdue, the Boilermakers expected to win their season-ender on Saturday at Penn State. In that case, all three would end with identical 14-4 records, but Ohio State would be the #1 seed in the conference tournament, Purdue, #2 and the Spartans, the #3 seed.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Providence's Peterson Provides Punch; Kentucky First to 2000 Wins

College Hoops Player of the Day for Monday, December 21, 2009

Last season was a forgettable one for the Providence Friars. Finishing near the bottom of the Big East standings, Providence was ousted from the NIT tourney in the first round by ACC foe, Miami. With a 19-14 record, all the team could do was look ahead to next year.

Well, next year is here, and the Friars, though not exactly a powerhouse, could be better than they were last season, thanks in part to the play of sophomore forward Jamine Peterson, who played as a true freshman, but redshirted last year. In Monday's 87-78 win over Yale, Peterson led all scorers with 25 points and pulled down a game-high 13 boards for his 7th double-double of the season. The 6'6" wingman hit 12 of 22 shots and fell just 2 points short of his career high point total. He leads the Friars in both points and rebounds. Providence, playing their final game before Big East play begins - at Notre Dame on Dec. 30 - is 8-4.

NOTABLE: The Kentucky Wildcats doubled up Drexel, 88-44, to become the first team in NCAA history to reach 2000 wins, getting to the number just ahead of North Carolina (1992) and Kansas (1980). In 107 seasons, the Wildcats have been a paragon of excellence, with a record of 2,000-635-1 (75.87). while the Tar Heels are a cinch to attain 2000 wins sometime in January or early February at the latest, the Kansas Jayhawks will likely hit the number either during their conference tournament or in the NCAAs. Kansas is currently ranked #1, at 10-0, and have 21 games remaining on their regular season schedule.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Providence Problematic for #1 Pitt

Sure enough, just a day after being named the #1 team in the nation by the AP Poll, the Pitt Panthers stumbled against a Providence team fighting for an NCAA bid, losing for the first time in 8 games, 81-73.

Providence came out flying, getting 12 first-half points from Jonathan Kale as they shot 53% in the period. Pitt shot a sub-par 37% on 10-27 shooting. At the break, the Friars held a healthy 44-26 edge.

Nearing the midpoint of the second half, Pitt had cut the Friars' lead to 10 points, but consecutive fouls by DeJuan Blair over a 14-second span sent the Pitt star to the bench with four personals.

Providence quickly built its lead back to 17 points, as Sam Young valiantly fired away, but the usually-reliable swimgman could not carry the load alone. Young finished with 16 points on 7 for 18 shooting (1-for-4 from 3-point range).

The Panthers weren't helping themselves much, putting Providence in the double bonus with 5:21 to play. That's when Blair returned, but by then the Friars were still up by 14.

The Panthers could cut the gap to no closer than 5 points down the stretch as Providence snapped their own 2-game losing streak.

Five Providence players hit double figures, led by Weyinmi Efejuku's 16 points.

The Friars are now 9-7 in the conference and 17-11 overall, and suddenly have a much better shot at getting that NCAA invitation.

Eslewhere in the Big East, Syracuse got a much-needed win at St. John's, mauling the Red Storm, 87-58. Jonny Flynn led the Orangemen with 21 points to go with 8 assists.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Creampuff Upsets

This is a difficult time of year for hard-core college hoops fans. Many of the games being played are lopsided affairs between ranked teams and small colleges, so there really isn't much in the way of compelling basketball.

However, there have been a number of notable upsets over the past week that need to be highlighted.

Last Saturday, USC, ranked #9 by and #7 by me, got walloped by little Mercer College, 96-81, marking the first serious casualty in the top 25. USC needs to play a little defense apparently. Mercer shot 59% from the field and also hit 13-16 free throws. By contrast, the Trojans shot only 40% from the floor and 56% from the charity line. Obviously, more time in the gym working on fundamentals is ahead for these guys.

Another team with free throw problems is Texas Tech, my #25 preseason pick. The Red Raiders fell on Wednesday night at Sam Houston State, 56-54, missing four key foul shots down the stretch and hitting just 15-28 freebies for the game. They also were outrebounded, 44-32. Coach Bobby Knight will likely be running block out drills and extra free throw sessions for weeks.

On Friday, Memphis knocked off UConn, 81-70 in the Coaches Vs. Cancer Classic. I didn't rank UConn, but had them at #21 preseason. I still think the Huskies are toast this season and this result is just the beginning of what will be a 12-15 loss season for them.

Also on Friday, one of my sleepers, Providence, topped Arkansas. 67-51 (I had Arkansas ranked #14 and the Friars, #22. didn't rank either of them). Providence had beaten Temple 66-64 in Thursday's opening round of the ESPNU Puerto Rico Tip-Off, before topping the Razorbacks. Arkansas committed 32 turnovers in the game, while the Friars accounted for 15 steals. What really stands out is that neither team shot the ball very well. Arkansas actually hit 43% from the field to Providence's 38%. Sonny Weems, one of the Razorback stars, had only 3 points in 36 minutes. I don't know why the Friars weren't ranked preseason, but they've served notice that they should challenge some of the powerhouses in the Big East. I still think Arkansas is a pretty good team and they'll recover from this.

The Friars (2-0) will face Miami (3-0) in the championship game, Sunday night.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Spartan Slaughter: Badgers Besieged

It certainly didn't take long for the Top 25 to get back to business as usual, which, this season means knocking off the high and mighty. On Monday, the Wisconsin Badgers were crowned the #1 team in the nation (yes, I said before the poll came out that Florida should have remained #1). On Tuesday night, Wisconsin suffered the fate of many a road team - they were beaten by a fired-up Michigan State squad which denied every scoring opportunity and ran Wisconsin off the court.

Not to be outdone, Providence and UNLV scored upsets over ranked teams as well.

#1 Michigan St. 64 Wisconsin 55 - Wisconsin's Alando Tucker was 6-15 from the floor, scoring 16 points, but running mates Kammron Taylor and Brian Butch might have done better sitting this one out. Taylor was a pathetic 0-6 in 39 minutes and finished with just a pair of free throws for 2 points. Butch was 1-4 and 1-2 from the charity stripe for a measly 2 points.

Meanwhile, the Spartans were making March Madness noise a week early. Junior guard Drew Neitzel was unstoppable, filling it up with 28 points on 10-17 shooting including 6-11 3-pointers. The Spartans held Wisconsin to 36% shooting (19-52) and outrebounded them badly, 41-24. Obviously, the kids at Michigan State didn't think much of the Badgers' #1 ranking and suddenly, at 20-8 and 7-6 in the Big 10, look likely to get an invitation come March.

UNLV 60 #14 Air Force 50 - Come on now. The Falcons fell into a tie for second place with UNLV at 10-4, behind 10-2 BYU in the Mountain West. All three of these teams may get an invite, but only the winner of the conference tournament is guaranteed entry. Air Force shot just 30% as the host Rebels shut down their suspect offense.

It was the 4th time this season the Falcons have been held to 56 points or less - all losses - and they haven't played a ranked team this season. Top 25 material? Hardly. At least UNLV played some ranked teams and beat 2 of them in 4 tries. BYU, finally ranked this week at #21, may not be much better than the Falcons. The only ranked teams they've played are UCLA and Air Force, and while they beat the Falcons, the 82-69 loss to UCLA isn't very heartening.

My point is that the Mountain West should get just one invitation because whichever team emerges from this mediocre conference looks very much like a first round victim.

#19 Texas 80 Texas Tech 51 - Kevin Durant had an off night, scoring only 16 with just 8 rebounds, but 4 other Longhorns scored in double figures while the Red Raiders were hitting just 29% of their shots (20% on 3's). The win was one of the easier home games for the Longhorns who still have a shot at the Big 12 title. They play at Oklahoma on Saturday, but then close out the season hosting Texas A&M on Feb. 28 and at Kansas on March 3. The Longhorns trail A&M by 1/2 game and Kansas by 1 game.

Providence 64 #22 West Virginia 61 - The Providence Friars kept their Big Dance hopes alive by rallying at home to upset the Mountaineers. Sophomore guard
Weyinmi Efejuku (yeah, remember the name) dropped in 24 points, including 4-7 from beyond the arc while his teammates ruled the boards, holding a 41-33 rebound advantage over the hops-challenged Mountaineers.

Providence improved to 7-6 in Big East play and 17-9 overall. They're floating on the NCAA bubble right now, but may be finding their best stride at the right time. Their last three losses have all been on the road, by 7 to Marquette, by 4 at Pitt and by 3 at Notre Dame. If they win 2 of their final 3 conference games and make some noise in the Big East tourney, a ticket to the dance could be in the offing.