Nov. 14, 2011
BRIDGEPORT, Conn. - The Providence College men's basketball team defeated the Stags of Fairfield, 80-72, on Monday, November 14 at the Webster Bank Arena in Bridgeport, Conn. Head Coach Ed Cooley earned the first victory over his former team and the Friars improved to 2-0 on the season.
For the second straight game, junior Vincent Council (Brooklyn, N.Y.), sophomores Bryce Cotton (Tucson, Ariz.), and Gerald Coleman (Boston, Mass.) finished in double-figures. Council ended the contest scoring a game-high 26 points, including 19 in the second half and Cotton poured in a career-high 24 points to help Providence to a victory. Coleman chipped in with 17 points off the bench. The Friars came out of the gate quick as freshman LaDontae Henton (Lansing, Mich.) got the Friars on the board first and Council extended the lead to 4-0 with a jumper from the top of the key.
Providence took an 11 point lead at the 13:05 mark, following a 9-0 run coming out of a timeout that was capped off by a three from Cotton on the left side. The Stags bounced back and took a 30-29 lead going into the half following a 15-4 run that was fueled by Rakim Sanders. Sanders posted 13 first-half points and took down six rebounds.
In the half the Friars shot 54.2%, making 13-of-24 from the field and were 2-of 5 from behind the arc. The stags shot 45.2% from the field, as they made 14-of-31 shots, but held an advantage in rebounds, 17-11.
In the second half, the Stags opened with a 7-4 run to extend their lead to 37-33 behind a three pointer by Ryan Olander. The Friars responded with a 12-0 run led by Council and Cotton who each scored six to give the Friars a 47-37 lead. Immediately, the Stags answered with a 10-0 run to tie the game, 47-47, at the 11:53 mark. The lead was short lived as Council scored six straight points to lead the Friars on another run. This time the Friars went on an 11-0 run from the 10:12 to 8:31 mark to take a 60-49 lead.
With 4:20 left on the clock, Council gave the Friars their largest lead of the game, 71-55, after getting fouled while driving to the basket and hitting the free throw.
Providence remained strong down the stretch, hitting critical free throws and going on to win the game, 80-72.
Overall, the Friars improved on their free throw shooting as they went 17-for-20. Providence will return to action when it hosts Florida A&M in the first game of the South Padre Island Invitational at the Dunkin' Donuts Center in Providence, R.I. Tip-off is set for 4:00 p.m.
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