St. Bonaventure Starters: G Kyle Lofton, G Nelson Kaputo, G/F Courtney Stockard, F LaDarien Griffin, C Osun Osunniyi
Updated Records: St. Bonaventure 6-11 (2-2); Rhode Island 9-7 (2-2)
Three Keys To The Game:
- Against a high-pressure Rhode Island defense, St. Bonaventure committed 18 turnovers that led to 20 points for the Rams.
- Rhode Island ended the first half on a 13-0 to grab control, leading 34-20 at halftime.
- Senior LaDarien Griffin led the Bonnies with 17 points.
KINGSTON, R.I. – St. Bonaventure's road frustrations continued on Wednesday as the Bonnies lost 75-63 to Rhode Island at the Ryan Center.
The Bonnies, who had won a pair of games last week, saw their Atlantic 10 Conference record even at 2-2 as they dropped to 6-11 overall.
St. Bonaventure, which is winless on the road this season, started well, holding the lead for the game's first 12 minutes. Rhode Island took a 21-18 lead at the 4:22 mark on a Tyrese Martin three-pointer.
It was a 21-20 game when Rhode Island capitalized on a St. Bonaventure cold spell. The Bonnies missed three shots and committed three turnovers in the final 3:28 of the first half, and the Rams scored the final 13 points of the half to open a 34-20 lead going into halftime. In the first half, the Bonnies committed 10 turnovers that Rhode Island turned into 12 points.
St. Bonaventure responded at the start of the second half, scoring 11 of the first 15 points in the stanza. Freshman Dominick Welsh made his first two three-point shots of the half, the second of which pulled the Bonnies within seven at 38-31.
A layup by Courtney Stockard cut the margin to six points at 41-35, but another long dry spell on offense cost the Bonnies. Rhode Island eventually pushed its lead up to 11 points at 49-38 by the 9:10 mark.
The Bonnies faced a double-digit deficit most of the way from there until back-to-back scores by Stockard and Welch pulled St. Bonaventure within 66-57 with an even 2:00 left.
That was as close as the Bonnies could come, however, as Rhode Island made free throws down the stretch to maintain its edge.
The Bonnies shot just 39 percent (21-54) in the game compared to 54 percent by the Rams.
LaDarien Griffin led the Bonnies with 17 points, extending his recent run of strong play. Stockard finished with 12 points and eight rebounds. Welch also finished with 12 points, a season high, while Kyle Lofton scored 10. Osun Osunniyi fouled out with five points, three rebounds and one block. He played just 17 minutes.
The Bonnies were shorthanded yet again as senior Nelson Kaputo suffered a head injury in the first half when he was run into by a Rhode Island player. Kaputo did not return, leaving the Bonnies thin at the guard spot since Jalen Poyser did not make the trip, also due to a head injury.
Quotes From St. Bonaventure Coach Mark Schmidt:
"We gave up the big run at the end of the first half, but I thought we did a good job at the start of the second half to cut (the deficit) down. We fought, got it down to six, but just couldn't make it a one or two possession game."
"We obviously didn't handle the ball well. We didn't handle their pressure like we should have. (Rhode Island) is a good team who can give people trouble.
"We tried but it's tough to beat a team as physical as URI. We need guys coming off the bench to be productive. We need to get more from everyone."
Up Next: St. Bonaventure will host Dayton this Saturday, Jan. 19, at the Reilly Center. Tip-off will be at 4:30 and the contest will air on NBC Sports Network.
- By Steve Mest, Associate Director of Athletics
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