Jared Bynum Leads #23 Providence Through Second Half Surge at Villanova
The No. 23/21 Providence College men’s basketball team defeated the Villanova Wildcats, 70-65, on Sunday, Jan. 29 at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia, Pa. The Friars improved to 17-5 on the season and 9-2 in BIG EAST play. The win puts the Friars in a three-way tie for first place in the BIG EAST standings. Today’s win marked the Friars first win at Villanova since February 29, 2020.
“Everybody that participated did a great job playing in a hostile environment,” Head Coach Ed Cooley said. “This was an incredible team win, character win and physical culture win.”
Graduate student Jared Bynum (Largo, Md.), in his second game since returning from injury, led the way for the Friars with 19 points on 7-8 shooting. Redshirt senior Ed Croswell (Philadelphia, Pa.) controlled the paint and finished with 14 points. Sophomores Bryce Hopkins (Oak Park, Ill.) and Devin Carter (Miami, Fla.) recorded 13 and 12 points, respectively.
Hopkins knocked down a mid-range jumper to open the game for the Friars. PC trailed 11-6 at the first media timeout.
The Wildcats missed six of their last seven shot attempts leading up to the 10:43 media timeout and continued to struggle on offense as the first half progressed.
With just under eight minutes left in the half, Devin Carter (Miami, Fla.) finished an alley-oop dunk off an Alyn Breed (Powder Springs, Ga.) assist to give the Friars their first lead, 16-15.
Croswell powered the Friars’ offense in the first half, starting 5-5 from the field. He was the first player with double figures in the game.
In the final stretch of the half, the Wildcats went on a 12-2 scoring run with four consecutive made shots to take a 29-22 lead.
Carter and Hopkins helped the Friars cut the deficit to three before halftime. PC trailed 31-28 at the half.
Providence shot 13-28 (46.4%) from the field, 0-8 (0%) from three and 2-2 (100%) from the free throw line.
Villanova shot 12-27 (44.4%) from the field, 2-10 (20.0%) from three and 5-5 (100%) from the free throw line.
Croswell continued his shooting streak and scored the first basket of the half from the interior. The Friars took a four-point lead early in the half.
The teams traded baskets as the game progressed, with neither team gaining more than a four-point lead until the 11:18 mark. Villanova led 47-42.
The Wildcats had put together a 15-4 run, but Bynum responded with three consecutive baskets in an 8-0 run. PC led 50-49.
“Jared showed incredible confidence in his teammates and in himself,” Cooley said. “That’s what an All-BIG EAST First Team and fifth-year player does.”
Each team was scoring at will in a tight game. At the 4:46 mark, Bynum knocked down his third three-pointer of the game. Less than a minute later, Corey Floyd, Jr. (Franklin, N.J.) added a three of his own. The Friars had quickly taken control, 64-58.
At the 1:33 mark, Villanova’s Cam Whitmore drained a three-pointer from the left wing to cut the Friars’ lead down to one. Bynum expanded the lead to three with a jumper with 0:25 remaining.
The Wildcats turned the ball over with a chance to tie the game with 0:13 to go.
Providence finished 28-56 (50.0%) from the field, 6-18 (33.3%) from three and 8-8 (100%) from the free throw line.
Villanova finished 24-56 (42.9%) from the field, 6-23 (26.1%) from three and 11-14 (78.6%) from the free throw line.
Four players finished in double figures for the Friars: Bynum (19), Croswell (14), Hopkins (13) and Carter (12).
Each team hauled in 30 rebounds. The Friars dished eight more assists.
The Friars finished with 29 bench points, while the Wildcats only had five.
Cam Whitmore led the way for the Wildcats with 21 points and four made three-pointers (both game highs).
There were 13 lead changes and six ties during the game.
The Friars are 5-3 in road games this season, including 4-2 in BIG EAST action.
PC is ranked No. 23 in the AP Poll and No. 21 in the Coaches Poll. It’s the team’s third week in the polls.
Bynum returned versus Butler on Wednesday, Jan. 25 after missing four games with a torso injury.
The Friars will travel to Cincinnati, Ohio to take on the No. 13/12 Xavier Musketeers on Wednesday, Feb. 1 at 6:30 p.m. at the Cintas Center. The game will be televised on FS1.
The all-time series between the Friars and Musketeers is split 11-11. The Musketeers hold a 9-2 mark at home against PC. The Friars swept the season series last year.