Dec. 12, 2009
PROVIDENCE, RI -- Junior guard Antone Gray (Providence, RI) scored 12 points, while classmate forward Darius Debnam (Dorchester, MA) was one-point shy of a double-double effort, as the Rhode Island College men's basketball team defeated University of Massachusetts Boston, 64-54, in Little East Conference men's basketball action.
Rhode Island College (6-4, 2-0 LEC) closes out the fall semester having won three of its last four games. The Beacons (3-7, 1-1 LEC) drop their third straight contest.
The Anchormen led wire-to-wire en route to staying unbeaten in conference action. The hosts opened up an 11-point lead, 15-4, 6:51 into the game. The Beacons fought back to trim their deficit to four points, 16-12, on a jumper by junior forward Pat Joseph (Queens, NY).
RIC answered back with a bucket and foul shot by freshman forward Steven Roberts (New Haven, CT), a layup from junior frontcourt mate Carl Lee (Warwick, RI) and a trey from freshman guard Derek Libbey (Lincoln, ME) to double-up UMass Boston, 24-12, at 7:51.
Once again the Beacons attempted to get back into the game, first on back-to-back three-pointers by sophomore guard Justin Favors (Mableton, GA) to make the score, 26-20, at 6:27, then later trimming the deficit to a mere three-points, 28-25, on two Joseph free throws at 3:37.
Two from the charity stripe by Debnam, a sophomore forward Mason Choice (Newport, RI) layup and a three-pointer by Gray quickly raised the lead back up to 10, 35-25, and RIC went into halftime up by six, 35-29.
The Anchormen came out of the break on a 6-2 run and went back up by 10, 43-33, on a Debnam layup with 16:42 left. A Joseph jumper once again later trimmed the host's advantage down to four points, 43-39, with 14:09 left, only to see RIC match its game-high lead at 12 points, 53-41, with 8:23 left. The Beacons would not get closer than seven points the rest of the game.
Debnam finished with nine points and a game-high 14 rebounds. Choice had 11 points and seven boards. Gray added a game-high five assists.
Joseph finished with a game-high 25 points and was one rebound short of a double-double for UMass Boston. He shot 10-for-14 from the field, while his teammates combined to go 9-for-42.
RIC, which shot just 34 percent (20-for-59), dominated the boards, 49-37, and grabbed 21 offensive rebounds.
Rhode Island College is off for finals and Christmas. The Anchormen will resume action on Wednesday, Jan. 6 at Becker, while the Beacons get back in action with a trip to Dudley, MA on January 5 for a 6:00 p.m. contest with Nichols College.