Perkins jpg
PC freshman forward Ben Perkins.

Friars Take on Rhode Island

PC-URI Rivalry Reheats

SITE: Providence Civic Center (12.993) - Providence, Rhode Island
TIME: Tuesday, December 9, 1997 - 7:35 p.m.

FRIARS VERSUS RAMS...The PC-URI rivalry is what college basketball is all about. Two intrastate rivals, one a state school, the other a private catholic school separated by 30 miles, for all the bragging rights in the state for one year. Tonight's game is the 108th official meeting between the two schools, there were two exhibition games played in 1921 and 1922, with Providence leading the all-time series, 59-48. PC is 6-6 against the Rams when the game is played as a URI home game at the Civic Center. URI won last year's game, 96-79, to break a three year PC winning streak. PC has won six of the last ten meetings between the two schools. Overall, the Friars are 30-21 when it's a Providence home game, 25-25 when URI is the host and 4-2 when the game is played on neutral courts.

FRIAR UPDATE...PC opened the season with wins against Vermont (67-63) and Brown (67-33) before dropping the BIG EAST opener on November 30th, 78-62 to Boston College. PC bounced back on Tuesday night at the Great Eight tournament as they battled #11-ranked Utah to the final minute before falling, 64-58. Ben Perkins led the Friars with 15 points in that game. PC breaks for finals after tonight's game and returns to action on Saturday, December 20th when they travel to Buffalo to face Canisius at the Marine Midland Center.

INJURED LIST...Junior forward Waleed Driscoll (torn ACL - right knee). Could miss the entire 1997-98 season.

Pos.    No. Name            Pts/Reb.    Ht.  Wt.    Class   Hometown
    F   25  Ben PERKINS     9.0/8.0     6-7  200    Fr.     Vinton, La. 
    F   42  Llewellyn COLE  8.5/4.5     6-7  215    So.     New York, N.Y.
    C    5  T.J. McKENZIE   2.0/2.7     6-10 235    Fr.     Friendswood, Tex.       
    G    3  Kendrick MOORE  7.3/3.5     6-3  180    Jr.     Hartford, Conn.
    G   33  Jamel THOMAS    19.3/8.5    6-6  215    Jr.     Brooklyn, N.Y.
    F    4  Kofi POINTER    0.0/0.0     6-8  220    So.     Baltimore, Md.
    G   10  Corey WRIGHT    2.8/1.5     5-8  160    Jr.     New York, N.Y.  
    G   12  John LINEHAN    5.8/1.5     5-9  165    Fr.     Chester, Pa.    
    G   13  Mark ADAMS      0.0/0.0     6-3  200    Sr.     Clifton, N.J.
    F   15  Peter FARRELL-  0.0/0.0     6-5  195    Fr.     Hanover, Mass.
    G   20  Dennis CLEARY   2.0/0.0     6-0  160    So.     West Orange, N.J.
  G/F   24  Erron MAXEY     7.0/2.5     6-6  195    Fr.     Lake Elsinore, Cal.
    C   34  Ndongo N'DIAYE  2.0/1.3     7-0  225    So.     Dakar, Senegal
 G/F    40  Justin FARLEY   DNP         6-6  205    Jr.     Indianapolis, Ind.
    F   50  Rick  CORDELLA  0.0/1.0     6-4  210    Jr..    Foxboro, Mass.
Gillen jpg
Head Coach Pete Gillen

PROVIDENCE...All-time record: 1084-667 (.619) - Best in New England...Home record: 643-201 (.762)...Civic Center record: 319-120 (.727).

Overall at PC: 61-39 (.610)/26-29 in BIG EAST
XAVIER: 202-75 (.724)

13-YEAR CAREER: 263-114 (.698)


Vs. Rhode Island: 2-1

NON-LEAGUE GAMES: 35-10 (Losses vs. Vlllanova - BE Tourney (1995, 1996, 1997); Virginia Tech - NIT; at Texas, ST. JOSEPH'S - NIT, Middle Tennessee State, Rhode Island, Arizona - NCAA, Utah)

NCAA TOURNAMENT: 10-8 (1985-91; 1992-93, 1997)

NIT: 4-3 (1993-94, 94-95, 95-96)

1997-98 (2-2/0-1)...Coached 100th game at PC versus Utah...

PROVIDENCE IN BIG EAST...112-175 in regular season and 125-192 overall in 18 seasons ... Eighth all-time in wins and percentage.

FRIARS VS. RANKED TEAMS....The Friars finished the 1996-97 season with 3-3 (AP) and 4-3 (USA Today/CNN) records against nationally-ranked teams. PC lost a 64-58 decision to Utah on December 2nd to go 0-1 this season. Utah was ranked 11th by the Associated Press and 10th by USA Today/ESPN

            Associated Press                USA TODAY/ESPN
DATE        RANK   TEAM     W/L    SCORE    DATE    RANK    TEAM    W/L  SCORE
12/2/97     #11     Utah    L      56-64    12/2/97  #10    Utah    L    56-64

(1997-98)...2-1 in November...0-1 in December...

HOME COOKING...The Friars are 2-1 at home this season after going 12-3 at home last season. The Friars are 59-16 (.787) record over the last 75 games at the Providence Civic Center (dating back to January 25, 1993). Over the last five full seasons plus three games this year, PC is 66-19 (.776) at the Civic Center. PC is 34-4 (.895) in its last 38 non-conference games in Providence dating back to the start of the 1992-93 season. Two of the losses have come in the NIT (Virginia Tech -1995, St. Joseph's - 1996) and two losses have been to Rhode Island (1992, 1996).

CIVIC CENTER RECORD...PC owns a 319-120 (.728) record at the Providence Civic Center since the building opened in 1972. The Friars recorded their 300th win on January 8, 1996 against Canisius (91-63).

NAIL BITERS...PC is 15-11 in games decided by five points or less in Pete Gillen's three seasons at PC. The Friars are 1-0 in games decided by five or less this season.

CAPTAINS...Three juniors will serve as the Friars tri-captains this season. Kendrick Moore, Jamel Thomas and Corey Wright were selected as captains prior to the start of the 1997-98 season.

FRIARS IN THE NBA...Providence College currently has seven players in the NBA. They are:

Otis Thorpe - Vancouver Grizzlies
Austin Croshere - Indiana Pacers
Eric Murdock - Miami Heat
God Shammgod - Washington Wizards
Dickey Simpkins - Golden State Warriors
Michael Smith - Sacramento Kings
Eric Williams - Denver Nuggets
Also, Atlanta Hawks coach Lenny Wilkens, is one of Providence College's all-time greatest players.

ROSTER UPDATE... Junior swingman Justin Farley. who transferred to Providence last January, will be eligible to play on December 20th at Canisius. Forward Kofi Pointer has left the team to concentrate on academics the remainder of the semester. His status will be decided following finals.

PLAYER SIGNING...Sean Connolly, a 6-4, 190-pound guard from Peabody, Massachusetts and Bishop Fenwick High School has signed a national letter of intent to attend Providence College for the 1998-99 school year.

FAMOUS RELATIVES...Junior guard/forward Jamel Thomas is the cousin of the Minnesota Timberwolves' Stephon Marbury.

WHAT A DIFFERENCE A YEAR MAKES...The Friars return just one starter (Jamel Thomas) from last year's Elite Eight and 24-12 team. Gone to graduation are Austin Croshere (Indiana Pacers -12th pick overall), Derrick Brown (CBA - Connecticut Pride), Ruben Garces (recovering from leg surgery) and Jason Murdock (out of basketball). Sophomore guard God Shammgod (Washington Wizards) opted for the NBA Draft where he was selected in the second round by Washington. Those five players accounted for 75.9% of PC's scoring and 68.1% of the Friars rebounding last season.

ATTENDANCE MARK...The 1996-97 Friars averaged more fans per game that ever at the Providence Civic Center. PC played 15 home games in front of 165,447 fans for an average of 11,030 per game. The previous best year was 1993-94 when the Friars averaged 10,882 per game.

CLASS BY CLASS..This season's Providence College roster features one senior, seven juniors, three sophomores and five freshman.

PUTTING ON THE PRESSURE...The Friars were able to pressure Utah into a season high 21 turnovers in the Great Eight meeting on December 2nd. That was a season high for the Friars. PC also had 10 steals in the game led by Corey Wright with three.

MOORE OFFENSE...Transfer guard Kendrick Moore is starting to find himself as he shakes off the rust of not having played last season after transferring from Missouri. Moore got his first start of the season against Utah and was 5-6 from the floor including a pair of three pointers for ten points in the game. His offense is a key to PC's success this season. "Silk" also played a season high 31 minutes in the game.

FAST ROOKIE STARTS...John Linehan and Ben Perkins got their Providence College career's off to fast starts in the Friars' opening win over Vermont. Linehan played 36 minutes, scored 13 points , grabbed three rebounds and added two assists in the win. Perkins recorded a double-double in his first game with 10 points and a game high 12 rebounds. The 6-7 forward played 36 minutes and his free throw with 3:11 left in the game put the Friars ahead to stay.

JAMEL THOMAS...Wasted little time in picking up where he left off as a sophomore. The 6-6 swingman scored a game high 25 points, pulled down 11 rebounds and had a PC best three assists in PC's win over Vermont. For Thomas it was the fourth double-double of his career. He also set career bests with 12 free throws and 16 free throws attempted.

MORE JAMEL....Thomas picked up his second consecutive double-double with 16 points and 10 rebounds versus Brown. That's the fifth double-double of his career and marks the first time he's done it in back-to-back games. The last Friar to have two double-doubles in a row was Austin Croshere who did it against Pitt (25-12) and Rutgers (17-13) on February 15th and 18th respectively.

FOR STARTERS.....The Friars entered the 1997-98 season with just two players who had ever started a college basketball game. Jamel Thomas had 33 starts last season and Corey Wright had three in 1996-97. Ben Perkins, John Linehan and Llewellyn Cole all made their first starts in PC's win over Vemont.

DEFENSE... The 33 points that Providence held Brown on November 25th were the fewest given up by the Friars since December 5, 1992 when PC defeated New Hampshire, 56-27. Brown scored 13 points in the second half. In the 12/5/92 game against UNH, the Wildcats were held to just 12 points in the first half.

MAKING THEIR MARKS....PC's four freshman are showing what they can do early in the season. Guard John Linehan has scored 13 and 10 points respectively in PC's first two games. Forward Ben Perkins had a double-double in his first game and added 11 more rebounds the second game. Center T.J. McKenzie sat out the first game with a sprained right wrist. Versus Brown, he played just nine minutes and had five rebounds, but no points. Swingman Erron Maxey made the most of his nine minutes against Brown as he scored 11 points with three rebounds.

MAXEY EFFORTS...Freshman swingman Erron Maxey (Lake Elsinore, Cal.) has made the most of his limited playing time this season. Versus Brown, in nine minutes, Maxey scored 11 points with three rebounds. Against Boston College, Maxey came in off the bench to spark the Friars. In 13 minutes, the 6-6, 195-pounder had 12 points and five rebounds. In 22 minutes, the last two games, Maxey has 23 points and eight rebounds. That's more than a point a minute!!!

SWEET LOU...Sophomore Llewellyn Cole (New York, N.Y.) turned in career highs against Boston College in minutes played (31), points (12) and rebounds (9). "Sweet Lou" is averaging 8.0 points per game and 5.7 rebounds. He is 11-19 from the floor for a .571 shooting percentage.

FRIARS TAKE TO THE ROAD....Tonight's game against Utah is the first of three road games for the Friars. On December 9th, PC will be the "away" team when they face Rhode Island at the Providence Civic Center. On December 20th, the Friars travel to Canisius. PC's next home game is on December 23rd against Loyola Marymount.

HOME OPENERS....The Friars opened their 71st season of play with a win against Vermont on November 18th. The Friars are now 63-8 overall in season opening games. When that season opening game is at home, PC is 49-3 and the record is 14-5 when the first game occurs on the road. In home openers, the Friars are 66-5 all-time. Providence has now won four season openers in a row. The Friars have now won 13 straight home openers dating back to November 29, 1984 when they lost a 70-67 decision to Assumption at the Civic Center.

BIG EAST OPENERS...PC's game against Boston College marked just the fifth time in 19 years that PC opened the BIG EAST schedule at home. With the loss to Boston College, the Friars have now lost eight straight BIG EAST openers. The last time PC won was in December of 1989 when they beat Boston College at home. That was also the last time the Friars opened the league schedule in Providence. PC is now 8-11 overall in home openers and 3-16 overall in season opening games.

BOUNCED ON THE BOARDS...The University of Utah dominated the boards against the Friars as they outrebounded the Black and White by a 49-24 margin. The 49 were the most against the Friars since Villanova pulled down 51 last December in a game at Villanova. Ben Perkins led the Friars with six rebounds in the game including four on the offensive boards. Utah's frontline of Hanno Mattola, Alex Jensen and Michael Doleac combined for 25 of the 49 rebounds. The Friars had come into the Utah game with a 41.7 to 29.7 edge in rebounds through the first three games. Last year, the most anyone outrebounded PC by was 17 as St. John's had a 44-27 edge on January 2nd in a 77-67 PC win.

STARTS AND STOPS...Kendrick Moore and T.J. McKenzie made their first starts for the Friars against Utah. Moore had 10 points (5-6 FG) and played 31 minutes. McKenzie got in foul trouble and only played six minutes with one rebound, a block and a steal.

    University of Vermont:      3-0
    Brown:                      82-24
    Boston College:             49-37
    University of Utah:         1-2
    Rhode Island:               59-48
    Canisius:                   19-5
    Loyola-Marymount:           1-0
    Purdue:                     1-4
    Cleveland State:            1-0
    Georgetown:                 14-29
    Iona College:               1-1
    Syracuse:                   6-33
    Pittsburgh:                 13-17
    St. John's:                 30-49
    West Virginia:              6-1
    Connecticut:                20-29
    Seton Hall:                 38-32
    Miami:                      10-7
    Rutgers:                    4-0 
    Villanova:                  25-38
    Notre Dame:                 5-3 

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