Don’t you hate those cold Saturday mornings in the winter when you come home with a deliciously hot cup of Dunkin’ Donuts coffee, park your butt on the sofa, and go to flip on ESPN only to find out that some BIG-10 game is the only college basketball action? INDIANA-MICHIGAN?!? NOO PLEASE NOOOO! Well, Friar fans got a taste of that low scoring brand of basketball in PC’s extremely close call victory over Yale on Monday night. In a kind of game rarely seen at the DUNK over the last several years, Providence held on to win 58-55. Before everyone gets too excited about holding the opponent to a low score, there were flashbacks to last year’s defensive problems when Yale hit a boatload of uncontested threes to actually take the lead in the 2nd half. Thankfully, the defense rebounded down the stretch with the game on the line, and the offense found a way to be, you know, not completely stagnant and focused on dribbling extensively.
Duke Mondy, who didn’t have a particularly good shooting night overall, hit a big go-ahead jumper with a minute to go after a timeout. Marshon Brooks created a little more breathing room hitting 2 foul shots with :19 seconds left, and Yale failed to force OT with a missed three in the closing seconds.
FAIL WHALE AVERTED.
Let’s take a closer look at the game after the jump!
LETS TAKE A CLOSER LOOK AT ‘THE FOUR FACTORS’
- The Friars offense was pretty poor, as evidenced by the really low 84.1 offensive rating. Their low effective field goal percentage was largely due to an ugly 2-14 from behind the arc. PC shot well on two-pointers in the first half (8-13), but cut back on the threes in the 2nd only to shoot 9-22 in the second frame. It looked like the Friars were going to hold their opponent to a really low eFG% again after Yale shot a 33% eFG% in the first half, but their three point barrage due to lax PC defense bumped up their overall number.
- Offensive rebounding was not really a factor for either team. There were a lot of missed shots, but the defense grabbed most of them. Providence only had 9 offensive boards (and Bilal Dixon had FIVE of them), and Yale edged them out with 10. However, The Bulldogs could only get 7 second chance points. Bilal Dixon and Marshon Brooks combined to grab 19 of Yale’s 38 misses (50%).
- There were a ton of fouls called the whole game, and the Friars really capitalized by getting to the line at a much greater clip than Yale. Vincent Council took as many freebies as the entire Yale team (13).
- Turnovers were once again a thorn in the side of the Friars. With a very young and inexperienced team it is somewhat expected, but Vincent Council and Marshon Brooks had 6 a piece. Both had key turnovers down the stretch when the game was very close, but Yale couldn’t capitalize. The Bulldogs also turned it over almost a quarter of their possessions, but Providence could only convert that into 11 points.
OTHER STAT NOTES
* 1st Half: 81.3
* 2nd Half: 85
* 1st Half: 55.6
* 2nd Half: 99
The Friars only played to less than 70 possessions 7 times last season. Only two of those games were out-of-conference (Bucknell 64 and Northeastern 66), and PC won both. The 5 games played in the BIG EAST under 70 possessions were all in losses.
Fun stat fact: PC never had lower than a 90 offensive rating last season: The worst was a 93.6 in the debacle of a home loss to Iona.
Let’s judge some performances by dishing out some pasta (from 1-4, 4 being awesome). My homage to the Star-Ledger.
I think it’s safe to say there were no 4 bowl performances on either team.
Bilal Dixon- Despite being one of the fewFriars who didn’t have problems shooting, Bilal didn’t get the ball much from Marshon or VC. He had a huge night on the boards again, since Yale gave out lots of opportunities for rebounds.
Marshon Brooks – Had some bad moments again (and SIX turnovers), but had a big rebound and hit two foul shots down the stretch to force Yale to need a three to tie.
Morgan Austin – Thank god he fouled out in the final few minutes so he couldn’t hit a tying three at the buzzer.
Jesse Pritchard – True to form of random guys doing good things against PC, this guy hits his FIRST THREE POINTS OF HIS CAREER, in a ridiculously key spot in the game. With Yale down 2 with under 3 minutes left, this guy banged home a three. Really man?
Vincent Council – Free Throws were nice, but 6 turnovers and 3-12 shooting overall. Lots of dribbling.
Kadeem Batts – Only 10 minutes of play. 1 rebound and 2 fouls were his only stat line. Not going to cut it in the BIG EAST.
Comcast – My damned internet went out midway through the second half. Thank god I had my iPhone to listen to the end of the game. AT&T edges out Comcast! Two sucky companies, one just less sucky than the other. Sound familiar?
BOX SCORES FOR THE STATS NERDS!
AROUND THE INTERWEBS
Trailing by one with 1:42 to go, the Friars got a big bucket from sophomore guard Duke Mondy (Grand Rapids, Mich.) to take the lead. Mondy cut through the lane from the left baseline and willed a shot in from close range to give the Friars a 56-55 lead with 1:07 left in the game.
Projo Hoops Blog: PC survives scare from Yale, 58-55
On defense, the Friars stopped paying attention to Yale’s players at the 3-point line and the Bulldogs responded by nailing five threes. That firepower sparked a 14-3 run that gave Yale a 41-40 lead with 12:34 to play.
PC, now 2-0, trailed 49-43 with 7:41 to play. But a grind-it-out defense that was missing for the majority of last season helped the Friars close the game on a 15-6 run and send everyone home with a major dose of relief.
Projo.com: Friars Journal: Veterans to the rescue
Instead, Davis rolled with his veterans for major minutes and avoided the upset in a 58-55 victory. Vincent Council (38 minutes),Marshon Brooks (37) and Bilal Dixon (36) all kept plugging right to the final buzzer as the Friars dug deep to scratch out a win. The only newcomer who saw major minutes was Gerard Coleman. He was a defensive mainstay over the final 10 minutes of the game but little factor (four points) on offense.
The Sun Chronicle: Friars buckle down, beat Yale
“Our offense wasn’t clicking,” said Friar senior guard Marshon Brooks. “The good thing is that we won the game at the defensive end. We played well defensively – that’s huge for us.”
Friar Basketball: 11/15 Yale Quick Hits
Mark me down as one who doesn’t think this team will be a great offensive team simply because Keno Davis’ system resulted in high scoring teams during his first two seasons here. The offense was absolutely stagnant in the half-court set with Vincent Council repeatedly dribbling out the shot clock before going one on one. I’ve been a huge Council advocate, but this team needs him to break down the defense and create for others much more than he did tonight. 3-12 with six turnovers isn’t going to win PC many games this year.
Truth About PC Basketball: Providence 58, Yale 55
Speaking of Marshon, he actually had a pretty solid game after his first-half no show vs. Dartmouth. I can’t condone the 6 turnovers, and at times he showed his trademark unwillingness to give up the ball, but his 12 rebounds and clutch free throws are a big reason why the Friars were able to pull this one out at the end
Go Local Prov: Friars Struggle to Beat Yale 58-55
The Bulldogs led by 1 with just over a minute to go when the Friars Duke Mondy scored to put PC up 56-55. A missed 3-pointer by Braswell with :30 seconds left was rebounded by Marshon Brooks who was fouled with :19 seconds to go. Brooks drained both free throws forcing Yale to call a timeout to set up a play for a game-tying three
Yale Daily News: M. BASKETBALL | Upset bid falls short
Down by three with 15 seconds to go, the men’s basketball team (0–2) had one last chance to upset Big East contender Providence (3–0).
As time expired, forward Greg Mangano ’12 attempted a three-point shot but missed, ending the Bulldogs’ hopes of an upset as they fell to Providence 58–55 Monday night in Rhode Island. The Bulldogs trailed for most of the first half, but made a run to close the gap in the second, setting up the chance to win on the last possession.
ESPN: Boring Ass AP Article
Vincent Council scored 18 points and Marshon Brooks andBilal Dixon each contributed double-doubles as Providence eked out a 58-55 victory against Yale Monday night.
THOUGHTS ELSEWHERE AROUND TWITTER
@PCDen Let’s see the forest for the trees with the Friars D so far this season: opponents average shooting less than 30% with 53 points allowed.
@MCMSwets Got the W tonight against Yale. Thought our defense looked really good for long stretches. We are 2-0 looking ahead now to Morgan State.
What were your thoughts?