A punch in the gut. That’s the only way to describe the feeling after tonight’s loss as the Rhody Rams couldn’t finish off the Seton Hall Pirates, blowing a game-long lead and dropping to 0-4. URI led the entire way, including by nine at the half and by eight (54-46) with 3:55 remaining. But the Rams allowed the Pirates to close with a 14-1 run and completely let this one slip away.
The story in this one, once again, was inside play, as Gene Teague complete dominated the Rams in the paint with 21 points on 7-11 shooting. He also pulled down 9 boards as Rhody had no answer for him all night. Meanwhile, Rhody built their lead with their guard play. Powell, Malone, and Munford combined for 38 of the Rams’ 55 points, with Powell leading the way with 19. He shot 5-6 from behind the arc and also dished out five assists, but Seton Hall brought their defense our to the perimeter down the stretch and URI couldn’t solve it.
There was also a subplot tonight – Nikola Malesevic was benched for the entire game for a violation of team rules. We’re hesitant to say that it absolutely cost the team the game, but one could certainly make that case. It left Rhody with Hare, Aaman, and Brooks to fill both spots in the front court, where Rhody had all of their troubles. So instead of what was shaping up to be 1-3, the Rams slip to 0-4, and have until after Thanksgiving to get over this one. More on this tough loss to come.