Richmond Ousts Bryant From CBI 76-71
Wednesday, March 20, 2013
For 36 minutes Wednesday night, it appeared that the Bryant Bulldogs were going to add yet another pleasant chapter to wht has been a marvelous 2012-2013 season. A pair of Shane McLaughlin (2 points) free throws tied the game up at 61-61 with 4:01 left.
But the Richmond Spiders are a solid mid-major program playing out of the Atlantic Ten and they showed their mettle down the stretchon their way to a 76-71 win at the Chace Athletic Center.
Things didn't start out well for the Bulldogs who fell behind 10-2 early making just 1 of their first 6 shot attempts. But Bryant was able to shale off those early game jitters and climbed right back into the game thanks to a trio of three-pointers by Dyami Starks (16 points) ina 2:30 stretch that pulled the Bulldogs to within one at 18-17 with 12:23 left in the first half.
Down 28-27 with 3 minutes left in the first half, the Bulldogs closed the half on a 10-5 spurt for a 37-33 lead at the break.
Bryant would fall behind again by as many as 8 (51-43) early in the second half before the Bulldogs battle back once more.
This time is was senior Vlad Kondratyev (13 points) who scored 11 of the team's next 16 points making the score 61-59 with less than 5 minutes to play.
McLaughlin's free throws tied the game at 61 with 4 minutes to go but it was all Richmond from there. Cedrick Lindsay scored 8 of his game-high 25 points in the closing minutes to help the Spiders pull away for the 76-71 victory.
The win lifts Richmond (19-14, 8-8 A-10) into the second round of the CIT where they will meet Wright State.
Bryant wraps up it's stellar season at (19-12, 12-6 NEC).
-A crowd of 1,854 showed up to the Chace Athletic Center for the first-ever division one playoff game on the Smithfield campus.
-Bryant went from two wins a year ago to 19 this past season. That 17-win turnaround was the greatest single season improvement in wins tied with the CAA's Towson Tigers who went from 1 to 18 wins this year. Ironically, Towson is coached by former Providence College and URI assistant coach Pat Skerry.
-Junior Alex Francis had 16 points and 7 rebounds for the Buldogs while senior point guard Frankie Dobbs wrapped up his career with a double-double of 10 points and 11 assists. Curtis Oakley had 10 off the bench for Bryant.
-Both teams shot the ball well with Bryant going 48% (25-52) from the field, 42% (8-19) from three and 77% (13-17) from the free throw line. The Spiders went 50% (26-52) from the field, 43% (9-21) from three and 75% (15-20) from the stripe.
-With a large portion of the core of the team (Starks, Francis, O'Shea) returning next year, Bryant should be picked to finish high in the Northeast Conference standings next fall.