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Friars Beat NJIT: Around the Web

dave@friarblog —  November 11th, 2012 8:02 AM —  Comments

Providence defeated NJIT 64-63 yesterday in the opening game of the season. Here are some links around the web.

link ESPN: Providence 64, NJIT 63 (AP)

Coach Ed Cooley said Council will have an MRI Sunday, and indicated that he is unlikely to play in the Friars’ upcoming matchup against Bryant on Monday.

The Friars are now down to just six academically eligible scholarship players, with Cooley describing his team as “the walking wounded.”

With Council out, Cotton was forced to take over as the floor general for Providence.

“I knew I had to work on my ball-handling,” Cotton said. “That was a major focus over the summertime.”

link Friars.com: Men’s Basketball Defeats NJIT In Season Opener, 64-63

Henton started the second half with a quick lay-up to bring his point total up to 20.  The Friars extended their lead to 10 points within six minutes of the start of the second half, their highest lead of the game.  NJIT chipped away at the Friars’ lead and took the lead with a three-point basket from Chris Flores with 4:13 left in the game, 63-62.  NJIT’s Flores finished the game tied his career high of 28 points. The Friars tied the game with a made free throw by Cotton with 2:19 remaining in the game.  Cotton again was sent to the free throw line with 5.1 seconds left in the game.  Cotton’s made free throw put the Friars up, 64-63.  NJIT’s PJ Miller took a deep three at the buzzer that missed to give the Friars the win.

link NJITHighlanders.com: Providence Holds Off Highlanders in Opener

“I’m really happy with the effort of our guys today. We showed resiliency and heart,” said Highlanders Head Coach Jim Engles, who was selected as GWC Preseason Coach of the Year by College Sports Madness. “We also had great individual efforts by Chris [Flores] and Ryan [Woods] that put us in position to win the game.”

The dramatic finish overshadowed the performance of senior Chris Flores, who tied his own NJIT Division I record by scoring a game-high 28 points – the final three of which came on the 21-foot jumper that gave the Highlanders their first lead since holding a 27-25 edge in the first half. Flores previously tallied 28 points at Houston Baptist on Feb. 17, 2011, to tie the initial record set just five days earlier by Jheryl Wilson ’11 vs. South Dakota on Feb. 12, 2011.

link GoLocalProv: Friars survive season-opening scare

Thanks to a solid defensive effort led by Cotton, Henton, Brice Kofane, Lee Goldsbrough and Kadeem Batts, the Friars had plenty of chances to put the game away…and yet could not come up with a clinching score on the other end.   The final two points of the game were both scored by Cotton, from the free throw line in four attempts, to provide the winning margin.  But just barely.

As such, the Friars opened their season with a win for the 11th time in the past 12 years, but it might have come with a price tag attached.  Time will tell just how expensive that cost might be.

link Boston Sports Nut: Friars Open At Home Against NJIT

I spoke to Henton after the game, asking if he was ready to lead this team long term if Council’s injury forced him to miss an extended period of time.  Henton told me that while he was a vocal player, and every player needed to contribute in Council’s absence, Vincent was the leader of this team, whether from the bench or on the floor and would continue to be regardless of the status of his injury.

link Providence Journal: Friars to hold emergency tryout after Council injury

Because of the hamstring injury to star point guard Vincent Council injury, Cooley says he’s holding an emergency walk-on tryout for a walk-on on Sunday at Alumni Hall. He’s hoping someone on campus played high school basketball, can handle the ball a bit and wants to help the cause this season. Right now the Friars have just one eligible walk-on (Ted Bancroft) and they need more.

“I just hope there’s somebody out there who had that dream of one day being on the team. That’s the guy I need,” Cooley said.

link NBC College Basketball Talk: Council injured in narrow Providence victory

Honestly? Providence isn’t too scary even with Council, but a lingering hamstring injury suffered in the first game is the worst way for a senior year to get started, and it won’t help Ed Cooley’s Friars find a much-needed cohesive identity, either.

link Friar Basketball: Rapid Reaction: Minus Council, Friars Edge NJIT 64-63

LaDontae Henton was terrific in the first half, scoring 18 of Providence’s 32 points, as the Friars led 32-29 heading into the locker room.  Just how essential was Henton early?  He made seven of Providence’s 11 field goals in the first 20 minutes.

It wasn’t a perfect afternoon for the sophomore, who missed on seven of his eight three point attempts, but he was perfect from the free throw line, finished with a team-leading 24, and made perhaps the defensive play of the game when he blocked an 18 footer with the game tied at 63 with 1:05 on the clock.

 

Providence vs. NJIT Live Blog

dave@friarblog —  November 10th, 2012 1:30 AM —  Comments

Providence kicks off their season against NJIT at the Dunkin’ Donuts Center this afternoon. @TTAPCBBall will be hosting a Live Blog here to take you through all the action and tomfoolery. Come join in the discussion below!

njitWake up Friartown, a new season is finally upon us! This season was not ruled just a partial qualifier by the NCAA. This season did not injure it’s shoulder requiring serious surgery and grueling rehab. I know twelve months ago it may have been tough to imagine this season starting without Ricky Ledo and Kris Dunn, but their time will come. Instead, the Friars will be moving forward with the pieces they have in order to make continual progress in the Ed Cooley era.

The first opponent to kick off 2012-2013 is NJIT.  PLEASE CALL THEM NJIT. Don’t call them New Jersey Tech or NJ Tech — seriously it’s specifically called out in their game notes. You may remember them from such losing streaks as “51 losses in a row, an NCAA record!”. The Highlanders had a rough start to their Division I days which began in 2006, but have become much more competitive in the Great West Conference over the last few years. However, Ed Cooley and the Friars should be able to ease into the season against a less talented team that is half full of newcomers.

WHAT TO: KNOW

Game Time: Saturday, 2 PM

Opponent: NJIT

Location: The Dunk

Ken Pom: Providence: #75, NJIT: #319

ESPN Pickcenter: Providence 73.5, NJIT 63.5

TeamRankings.com Projection: Providence 73.8, NJIT 64.2

Coming to the game?: “Please bring a canned food item to support the Rhode Island Food Bank’s Holiday Food Drive. For your generosity Providence College and Webster Bank will give you two tickets to a future Friar game!”

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