The Rhode Island Rams will go for their second win in six A-10 tries this afternoon when they take on the Dayton Flyers at the Ryan Center. And while UD’s record looks scary (13-6), they’ve dropped three of their past four contests to drop them to a half-game above Rhody in the conference standings. Not only would a URI win help their position in the league, but it could also deliver a back-breaking blow to Dayton. Let’s see what needs to happen.
1. Get Off and Running
Rhody has been notorious for their slow starts as of late, and it’s unlikely that things will change in that department anytime soon. Dayton, however, suffered a colossal defeat earlier this week when VCU jumped out on them early and never looked back. If someone can figure out what it will take for URI to get an early lead in a game, they should pull out all the stops to make it happen.
2. Oliver and Company
The Flyers have a very balanced offensive attack, and it’s keyed by senior Devin Oliver. The 6’7″ forward is second on the team in scoring at 11.8 points per game, but he leads the way in both rebounds (7.0) and assists (2.5). The good news for the Rams is that Oliver is quite streaky. If they can contain him the way Saint Louis did earlier this month (0-12 shooting, 0 points), they’ll be just fine.
3. Home Cooking
The Flyers haven’t been a particularly good road team this season, so the crowd in Kingston needs to be rocking today. Dayton is just 3-2 away from the UD Arena, so it’s not like they have a ton of experience with away games this year either. Rhody fans need to go all out this afternoon as they try to make the Ryan Center as loud as possible.
4. Limit Turnovers
Luckily for the Rams, Dayton doesn’t force teams into mistakes all that often. They Flyers have forced an average of just 6.5 turnovers per game in their last two contests, so hanging onto the ball shouldn’t be too difficult for Rhode Island. They just need to make sure they do it.
5. Last-Second Magic
This video pretty much sums it up.
Does Rhody have a chance this afternoon against a tough Dayton squad? Or will they fall victim to the A-10 once again? Let us know in the comments.