The Rhode Island Rams hung with the number 13 team in the country as long as they could, but turnovers and stalled drives eventually caught up with Rhody in a 24-0 loss to the Stony Brook Seawolves. The defeat drops URI to 0-2 on the season, but unlike the 2012 campaign, there are many more bright spots for the Rams through the first two games this year. It’s still incredibly frustrating for fans to be sure, but Rhody is showing signs that they’ll be able to get in the win column sooner rather than later. Here are some takeaways from URI’s *gulp* fifteenth straight loss.
First, the positives. A week after giving up 51 points, Rhody allowed just 10 points in the first 50 minutes and 37 seconds before a few late touchdowns allowed the Seawolves to put the game out of reach. Another big positive for the Rams comes from the GoRhody.com recap: “…Rhode Island has more first downs, rushing yardage and time of possession than the opposition…” Unfortunately the losses are still coming, but that has to be seen as a big positive through the first two games. URI’s passing game also looked much better, with Bob Bentsen completing 25-34 attempts for 224 yards. Freshman Andrew Matos led the receiving corps with four catches for 68 yards, although both Matos and Bentsen coughed up crucial fumbles.
Which brings us to a big-time negative. The Rams have turned the ball over five times through the first two games, while failing to generate a take-away on defense. There is no doubt that this is the biggest problem to carry over from last season. Rhody is not going to get in the win column if they can’t force turnovers from the opposition. URI’s running game also suffered a pretty sizable setback yesterday, especially coming off a monster 277-yard rushing performance against Fordham. Rhode Island tallied just 67 yards on the ground against Stony Brook, and failed to convert several key short third- and fourth-downs.
Long story short, the Fordham game was solid offense and poor defense, and yesterday’s affair saw poor offense but solid defense. The Rams will try to put together a good game on both sides of the ball next Saturday when they head on the road to take on the Albany Great Danes. Game time for the CAA opponents is set for 7:00 p.m. under the lights.