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slides: Bullock Wins Game For PC, Will Face North Carolina on Saturday

Friday, March 18, 2016


Rodney Bullock

The 9th seeded Providence College Friars defeated 8th seeded University of Southern California (USC) 70-69 on Thursday night in the first round of the NCAA Tournament in Raleigh, North Carolina. The win is the Friars first tournament win in 19 years. 

"Great finish. March Madness at its best. Very, very happy for our players. Hard-fought game. Came right down to the wire. Missed shots, missed free throws, but in the end, we prevailed and that's what this month is about, just advance however you can," said PC Head Coach Ed Cooley after the game. 

The Cardiac Kids

Providence trailed 69-68 with three seconds left in the game when Rodney Bullock took an inbounds pass from under the Trojans basket and layed it in as time expired. 

"Kris and Ben took a lot of the attention away. I guess Drew saw me and made a great play and I just finished it," said Bullock after the game. 

Before that, Providence trailed by as much as seven, 60-53, with 7:14 to play before a Kyron Cartwright three cut their deficit to just four. 

The Friars would end up taking a lead, 61-60, after a Rodney Bullock three went down with 5:59 to play before USC would go on a 8-2 run to take a 68-63 lead with 2:40 to go. 

The Friars would battle back to tie the game at 68, setting up last second heroics by Rodney Bullock. 

Poor Finish to 1st Half 

USC's Katin Reinhardt hit a three with one minute to play to give the Trojans a 36-35 lead which they would take into the half. 

Prior to that Providence led 24-17 after a Rodney Bullock three with 11:42 to play in the game and then led 31-27 with 4 minutes to play. 

Providence played the majority of the first half without Kris Dunn who picked up two fouls and sat on the bench for 9 minutes. 

USC shot 53% from the field in the first half, including 50% from three. 

The Leaders 

The Friars were led by Ben Bentil who poured in 19 points on 7 of 21 shooting from the field. 

Rodney Bullock and Kris Dunn each followed up with 16 points. 

Moving on 

Next up, the Friars will face top seeded North Carolina on Saturday. Carolina beat Providence in the NCAA Tournament two seasons ago.

Game time is set for 9:50 p.m. 

More to come... 


Related Slideshow: 5 Takeaways From PC’s 70-69 Win Over USC

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Kyron Cartwright

With Dunn in foul trouble Kyron Cartwright played extra minutes and ran the show in the first half. 

Off the bench, Cartwright had 10 points on 3 of 5 shooting from the field and dished out 6 assists. 

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Kris Dunn

Kris Dunn ended the night with 16 points on 5 of 13 shooting from the field, including 4 of 5 from three-point land. Dunn also had 4 assists and 4 rebounds in the game. 

However, Dunn got into foul trouble in the first half, playing only 10 minutes and then picked up fouls 3 and 4 in the second with plenty of time left. 

Dunn picks up the fouls because he tries to go for steals and doesn't get them. The Friars need him on the court. Playing only 10 minutes in the first half is not going to cut it against North Carolina on Saturday night. 

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The Friars did a good job of not turning the ball over, only commiting six turnovers in the game. 

Meanwhile, USC had 12 turnovers, 7 of which came in the first half and allowed the Friars to stay close despite not playing great. 

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Drew Edwardds

Freshman Drew Edwards deserves some credit for the final play as he made the inbounds pass to Bullock. 

First he had to get the ball in, no easy task in that situation. Second the pass needed to be perfect so that it wasn't at Bullock's ankles. Lastly he had to make sure the pass was inbounds and that it didn't bounce early.

Bullock will get the glory but Edwards deserves credit for the pass. 

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Bullock game winner

What a moment and a play for Rodney Bullock who has had his struggles at times this season and has also looked really good at other times this season. 

Providence trailed 69-68 with three seconds left in the game when Rodney Bullock took an inbounds pass from under the Trojans basket and layed it in as time expired. 

See the Play HERE

Bullock ended the game with 16 points on 6 of 11 shooting from the field while also grabbing 10 rebounds. 

"Rodney had some issues his first year. Second year, tore his knee up. Had an up-and-down this year but he really saved his best for tonight. I thought he made a big, big three to put us up, I believe, one late in the game. Came up with a really big deflection, where we got a steal. A big block-out, where -- I'm just happy for him in his perseverance and for him to continue to believe in Providence College, trying to, you know -- it's tough raising these kids because they are young men that make mistakes, we as adults have to give them the opportunity to change, and I'm happy to see that it's worked for them," said Cooley after the game. 


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