RIC Beats Bates to Remain Perfect at Home

AKINROLA, PALUMBO & CARTER HELP ANCHORMEN DEFEAT BATES, 77-61
RIC
Remains Unbeaten at Home With 11 Victories
Providence, R.I.-Senior center
Mike Akinrola (Woonsocket, RI) tallied 20 points and 11 rebounds to help guide
the Rhode Island College men's basketball team past Bates College, 77-61, on
Thursday night at The Murray Center in non-conference action.

Junior
guard Tahrike Carter (Brooklyn, NY) nearly finished with a triple-double, as the
co-captain totaled 16 points, nine rebounds and nine assists to go along with
two steals and two blocks. Meanwhile, sophomore guard Michael Palumbo
(Providence, RI) connected on five three-pointers, four of them in second half,
en route to career-high 15 points.

“Michael Palumbo really stepped up and
gave us a big boost tonight,” said Head Coach Bob Walsh. “Ethan Gaye also did a
great job setting the tone on defense.”

RIC (17-5) continued to stay
undefeated at home (11-0) with the victory. The Anchormen are still locked into
fourth place (7-4 LEC) in the Little East Conference standings with three games
remaining in the regular season.

Both teams traded punches through the
first 20 minutes of the game with the Anchormen taking a 33-27 lead over Bates
(11-11) at the break. RIC stormed out of the gate in the second half to take a
12-point, 43-31, lead with 15:17 on the clock behind four straight points from
senior forward Mason Choice (Newport, RI). However, the Bobcats responded with
eight straight points over the next three minutes to make it, 43-39, with 12:57
left to play. That's when Palumbo drained back-to-back threes in a matter of 20
seconds to put RIC back up by 10, 49-39, with 12:17 remaining.

Bates kept
chipping away at the deficit over the next few minutes, eventually cutting the
margin to just one point on a basket from senior center John Squires
(Swampscott, MA), making it 52-51, with 8:31 on the clock. Yet, that would prove
to be the last gasp for the Bobcats, who were outscored, 17-6, over the final
eight and a half minutes. Palumbo proved to be a huge part of RIC's final run,
as he buried two more treys down the stretch to help seal the victory, while
Carter finished with seven of RIC's final 17 points.

The Anchormen were
aided by a strong effort on the glass, as they out-rebounded the visiting
Bobcats, 43-33, and finished with 15 offensive rebounds. Rhode Island College
shot 40 percent (23-for-57) from the floor, including 43 percent (9-for-21) from
beyond the three-point arc, while going 22-for-31 (71 percent) from the free
throw line.

Meanwhile, Bates did most of their damage from the charity
stripe where they shot 87 percent (20-for-23). However, the Bobcats shot just 35
percent (20-for-57) from the field, including a dismal 1-of-10 shooting effort
from outside.

Squires posted a game-high 25 points to go along with eight
boards and three steals to lead Bates in the loss. Junior center Ed Bogdanovich
(Portland, ME) notched 13 points and seven rebounds, while junior guard Mark
Brust (Duxbury, MA) tallied eight points, five assists, three boards and two
steals.

Choice recorded eight points (all in the second half) for the
Anchormen, while also tallying five rebounds, two blocks, two steals and two
assists. Sophomore guard Tom DeCiantis (North Kingstown, RI) registered five
points, with freshman forward Jacob Page (Brookline, MA) adding four points off
the bench. Sophomore guard Ethan Gaye (Providence, RI) received high praise
following the game for this standout defensive play.

In upcoming action,
Rhode Island College will resume Little East Conference action at Southern Maine
on Saturday, Feb. 11 (3 p.m.).

  -end-