BRIDGEWATER, Mass. – Five players scored in double figures as the Bridgewater State University men's basketball team posted an 81-75 victory over non-conference rival Rhode Island College on Tuesday night at the Tinsley Center.
Bridgewater State improves to 2-2 on the young season with the win, while RIC falls to 1-3. The Bears are 17-16 versus the Anchormen (11-6 at home) over the last 33 years as the two teams have met every season since the 1985-1986 campaign.
Senior forward Joseph Carty (Natick, Mass.) paced Bridgewater with 17 points and eight rebounds. Carty scored 13 of his 17 points in the second half. Sophomore forward Dimitri St. Louis (Brockton, Mass.) tallied 15 points and seven boards, including six offensive, in 28 minutes off the bench.
Sophomore forward Rayshon Ward (Plymouth, Mass.) added 14 points for the Bears, while sophomore guard Ryan Carney (Easton, Mass.) and senior guard Rocky DeAndrade (Mansfield, Mass.) chipped in with 12 points apiece. Carney scored ten of his 12 points in the final stanza. DeAndrade also added five rebounds and four assists.
Sophomore guard Chris Farrington (Fall River, Mass.) paced Rhode Island College with 19 points, while classmate CJ Donaldson (Bridgeport, Conn.) checked in with 17 points on 8 of 13 shooting to go along with four rebounds and six assists. Junior forward Justin Campbell (New Haven, Conn.) went 8-for-8 from the floor to notch 16 points. Campbell also added seven rebounds.
In the first half, RIC erased a two-point deficit with an 11-2 run to take a 25-18 lead with 6:41 remaining. Farrington highlighted the spurt with five points on a three-pointer and a jump. The Bears battled back to knot the score at 27-27 on the strength of a trio of three-pointers from DeAndrade, St. Louis and sophomore guard Brian Grant (Hyde Park, Mass.).
Following a turnover, Ward dropped in a layup to give Bridgewater a 29-27 advantage with 3 ½ minutes left to play in the stanza. RIC, however, closed out the half on a 10-2 run with Donaldson connecting on a three-pointer and Campbell scoring the final four points on a pair of layups to make it a 37-31 game at the break in favor of the visitors.
Farrington led all players with ten first-half points, while junior center Grant Gillis (Jamestown, R.I.) added nine and Campbell eight for the Anchormen. St. Louis and Ward paced the Bears with eight points apiece.
A St. Louis three-pointer pulled the Bears to within three, 39-36, in the opening minutes of the second half. Following a turnover, Grant cruised in for a breakaway layup to make it a one-point game and force an RIC timeout. The Anchormen held on to the slim lead over the next few minutes until Carty single-handedly orchestrated a 9-2 run to put the Bears up 51-48 with 11:40 remaining.
There would be five lead changes and one tie over the next four minutes. A pair of Carney free throws with 7:50 left to play accounted for the final lead change as the Bears jumped ahead, 57-56.
Carney would spark a quick 7-2 run later in the period to turn a one-point game into a 70-64 BSU advantage with 4:23 showing on the scoreboard. Carney scored all seven points during the run on a three-pointer and a pair of layups.
After Farrington knocked down a pair of free throws to cut the deficit to 70-66, the Anchormen would go scoreless for over three minutes. A St. Louis jumper followed by four straight free throws by Carty and DeAndrade gave the Bears a ten-point cushion (76-66) as the clocked ticked under a minute. Bridgewater would connect on 5 of 6 free throws in the final 30 seconds to help secure the 81-75 win.
The Bears shot 44% (28-64) from the floor for the game including 7 of 18 (39%) from three-point range. Bridgewater was nearly perfect at the charity stripe as the Bears connected on 18 of 19 free throw attempts.
RIC shot 56% (32-57) from the field and made 6 of 16 three-pointers (38%), but made just eight trips (5-for-8) to the free throw line. The Anchormen also turned the ball over 22 times thanks in part to 11 BSU steals. The Bears turned those 22 turnovers into 24 points as they held a 24-11 advantage in points off turnovers.
In upcoming action, the Bears will take on Emerson College on Friday night at seven in the opening round of the UMass Boston Harbor Invitational., while the Anchormen entertain Regis College on Sunday afternoon at one.