Fatts Russell, Jeremy Sheppard Lead Rhody To Comeback Win on Their Senior Night

Rhode Island snapped its four-game losing streak by rallying from an 18-point, second-half deficit, outlasting Dayton 91-89 in a double-overtime battle Tuesday night.

Trailing 58-40 with 9:44 to go, Rhode Island (10-12, 7-8 Atlantic 10) ended regulation on a 29-11 run, taking its first lead of the second half when Makhel Mitchell scored a second-chance basket with 1:33 remaining. Dayton’s Jordy Tshimanga made 1-of-2 free throws with six seconds remaining to second the game to overtime.

In the first extra session, the Flyers (11-7, 7-6 A-10) went up by four points on a Crutcher layup that made the score 76-72. Back-to-back layups from Fatts Russell and Jeremy Sheppard tied the game for the Rams, and Mitchell put Rhody up one with a free throw. Dayton’s Zimi Nwokeji scored on an offensive putback, giving the Flyers a 78-77 lead with 19 seconds to go. Mitchell was fouled with 10 seconds to go, and had to leave the game with an injury on the play. Malik Martin made 1-of-2 stepping to the line, again tying the game and forcing a second overtime.

The second overtime featured six lead changes and two ties as the teams went back and forth. Jeremy Sheppard hit a jumper with 1:27 to go, putting Rhody ahead 87-86. A pair of Mitchell free throws extended the lead, and single free throws by Russell and Antwan Walker provided the winning margin in the final 10 seconds. Martin came up with the loose ball steal on Dayton’s final inbounds play to seal the victory for Rhode Island.

Inside the Box Score
Senior Fatts Russell became Rhode Island’s all-time leader in steals, getting four on the night to give him 210 for his career. He passed the previous mark of 207 by Keith Cothran from 2006-10.
Russell also had a team-high 20 points to go with seven assists and five rebounds.
Fellow senior Jeremy Sheppard had 17 points, six rebounds and four assists.
Both Russell and Sheppard played 45 minutes for the Rams, becoming the 13th and 14th players in team history to play 45 minutes or more in a game.
Freshman Ishmael Leggett finished with a career-high 18 points on 6-of-8 shooting from the floor. He was 5-for-7 from 3-point range, with all five long range shots coming after halftime.
The guard trio of Russell, Sheppard and Leggett combined for 55 points, 12 assists and two turnovers in 129 minutes of play.
Sophomore center Makhel Mitchell recorded the double-double, finishing with 16 points and 12 rebounds.
Redshirt junior Antwan Walker was the fifth Ram in double figures, scoring 10 points and grabbing 10 rebounds.
The last time two Rams had double-doubles in the same game was Dec. 16, 2017 when Cyril Langevine and Stanford Robinson did so against College of Charleston.
Junior Malik Martin had six points, five rebounds, two blocks and two steals off the bench.
Up Next
Rhode Island will head to George Washington for a contest Sunday morning. Game time is 11:30 a.m. on NBCSN.

Categories: Sports