Archie Miller’s URI Debut Spoiled by Quinnipiac

Foul trouble, turnovers, and difficulties getting shots to fall plagued Rhode Island in a 67-62 season-opening loss to Quinnipiac Monday night at the Ryan Center.

The Rams got off to a slow start as three of their five starters picked up two fouls in the first 20 minutes of play. Malik Martin scored eight points off the bench in the opening period – including a pair of 3-pointers – to keep the game close. However, 12 first-half turnovers from URI allowed the Bobcats to head into the break leading 34-31.

The Rams got after it early in the second half, as guard Ishmael Leggett sank an up-and-under layup to cut Quinnipiac’s lead to one (34-33), but the Bobcats responded with a 9-0 run that extended their lead to double digits (43-33).

Rhody looked to push the pace on the fast break, and later used an 8-0 run – which was highlighted by an acrobatic layup by Sebastian Thomas – to pull back within four at 52-48. Rory Stewart went on to score his first collegiate basket with 6:22 remaining, making it a 60-57 game. A pair of free throws by Thomas, and another by Abdou Samb then knotted the score at 60 apiece with 5:17 left to play.

The Bobcats broke the tie when Luis Kortright hit a jumper on the very next possession, and then added layups from Paul Otieno and Dezi Jones to push the advantage to six (66-60). Rhody could not capitalize on its chances down the stretch, eventually falling 67-62.

Inside the Box Score
URI suffered from 19 turnovers, 12 of which came in the first half. Quinnipiac scored 18 points off of Rhody’s miscues.
Neither team had a strong night at the free throw line as URI connected on 16-of-29 (55 percent) and Quinnipiac was just 9-for-25 (36 percent).
The teams combined for just eight makes on 37 attempts from long range. Rhody connected at an 11.8 percent clip (2-17).
Rhode Island scored 17 fastbreak points while limiting Quinnipiac to just four.
Ishmael Leggett scored a team-high 14 points while also adding five rebounds, three steals and three assists.
Malik Martin added 11 points – including URI’s only 3-pointers of the game – and pulled down a team-best eight rebounds. He also had three steals and a pair of blocks.
Sebastian Thomas recorded 10 points, six assists, four rebounds and two steals.
Rory Stewart was the lone Ram to finish with a positive plus-minus as he was +7 in 14 minutes on the floor. He finished the night with two points and five rebounds.
Alex Tchikou pulled down five rebounds, scored seven points and blocked one shot for the Rams.
Abdou Samb was 3-for-3 from the floor in his collegiate debut, ending the game with eight points, four rebounds, two assists and one block.
Brandon Weston and Louis Hutchinson also made their collegiate debuts in the season opener. Weston logged six minutes on the floor while Hutchinson recorded two points, four rebounds and one steal in eight minutes of action.
Up Next
The Rams return to the Ryan Center on Saturday afternoon when they host North Texas at 4 p.m.

Categories: Sports