Game Recap: Ed Croswell’s Ascension Continues As He Leads Providence Over URI 66-52

Providence Friars 66 (8-1)

Rhode Island Rams 52 (6-3)

Ed Croswell showed out for the second game in a row, clarifying that his current high level of play was not just a one game thing. To put an exclamation point on what has turned from “The Ed Croswell Game” to “The Ed Croswell Week,” the LaSalle transfer dominated down low to the tune of 13 points and 15 rebounds. The Friars trailed for a total of 1 minute and 32 seconds, essentially holding a comfortable lead for the entirety of the game.

Providence improved to 8-1 on the season, including a perfect 6-0 at home at The Dunk. It was great to see The Ocean State Rivalry return after being put on hold the last two seasons as this is a game that should be played each and every year. The faces may change on the teams but the energy of the fandom from the two Rhode Island squads is always on full display.

Game Notes:

  • Just one game after setting his Friar-Highs in most categories, Ed Croswell decided to quickly eclipse the statistics he put up in the win over Texas Tech.
  • Let’s count his new highs as a Friar against what he just set last game:
  • 13 points, new Friars-High (was 11 points against TT)
  • 5 made field goals, ties Friars-High (made 5 FGs against TT)
  • 15 rebounds, new Friars-High (had tied previous high with 6 rebounds against TT)
  • 8 offensive rebounds, new Friars-High
  • 7 defensive rebounds, new Friars-High
  • 22 minutes, ties Friars-High (played 22 against TT)
  • 3 made free throws, new Friars-High
  • And, since Mama Mitchell was all about throwing Ed under the bus for the sake of her two boys on URI, I think now would be a great time to compare the stats for the trio of transfers.
  • The Mitchell Twins: 5/9 FGs, 13 pts, 6 rebs, 1 stl, 3 blocks, 5 TOs, 8 fouls
  • Ed Croswell: 5/6 FGs, 13 pts, 15 rebs, 2 stls, 1 block, 1 TO, 2 fouls, 1 W
  • No additional commentary needed here.
  • Noah Horchler scored a game high 16 points, including 4/8 from downtown.
  • Horchler’s 4 made threes tied his career-high that he set twice last season. His prowess from deep continues to open up things for the other guys.
  • Noah added 7 rebounds and a pair of assists to round out his game.
  • Al Durham finished with 14 points and 6 assists while playing a team-high 38 minutes. Ed Cooley clearly trusts Al as he continues to see the floor the most of any player on the team.
  • Durham continued to feast at the line going 5/5. Over his last 6 games, Durham is 44/46 (95.7%) from the free throw line, getting to the line an average of 7.7 times per contest.
  • With the additional ball handling duties for Al while Jared Bynum is sidelined comes an uptick in turnovers, coughing it up 5 times for the game. I’ll take the trade off of his play-making ability to his TOs but I’d still love to see a little more care with the rock. This perfectly set up play from Durham to Minaya instantly reminded me of Shooter’s game-winning play from Hoosiers.
  • URI did its best at limiting the touches that Nate Watson saw, taking a page out of Texas Tech’s book. Unfortunately for the Rams, Providence has other weapons and a bench that can step up when called upon.
  • It didn’t help that Big Nate was sidelined with foul trouble for a good while, only playing 20 minutes in the game. Fortunately, so were the Mitchell Twins, essentially off-setting each other.
  • A.J. Reeves hit a pair of threes although he didn’t have the best night shooting overall (3/14), finishing the game with 8 points.
  • Alyn Breed had a rough offensive game, going 0-fer from the floor (0/8) with 3 turnovers. This is one of those games that you just wipe it from your memory and move on from.
  • I continue to love Justin Minaya. The glue guy had 6 points, 6 rebounds (4 of the offensive variety), and an absolutely filthy assist.
  • I still don’t think Brycen Goodine is 100% back to full health after dealing with an illness.
  • The Rams starting 5 left a lot to be desired but there were a couple guys on their bench that looked like they could be players moving forward. I really like the energy that Malik Martin brings. The 6’6” Junior took down 8 rebounds, doubling up the next highest rebounder on his team. The one complaint I’d have as a Rams fan is that he only took 1 shot in 28 minutes (which he made).
  • Freshman Sebastian Thomas appears to be ready to contribute for URI right now. I’d try to give him some extended run soon to see if he can handle a full game but he looks prepared for College ball already.
  • I’m happy Coach Cox has made it easy to dislike a URI coach again. I was nervous that since Hurley left I wouldn’t feel that way again but he is filling that void quite nicely so far.

Next Up, the Friars stay at The Dunk to face a visiting Vermont squad on Tuesday at 6:30 PM on FS1. Sidenote, I HATE these 6:30 tips.

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