Men's Basketball Earns Narrow Victory at Roger Williams, 80-76

BRISTOL, R.I. – Freshman Tucker Bouchard (Kingston, Mass.) scored all of his 19 points in the second half to help the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth fend off Roger Williams University in a non-conference win on Tuesday evening, 80-76.  

UMass Dartmouth (5-3) bounced back from a road loss to Plymouth State in the opening day of Little East play on Saturday. Roger Williams (1-7) continues to struggle in the campaign as the Hawks drop their third straight contest. 

Bouchard led the Corsairs in points to go along with seven caroms. Sophomore Wale Abraham (Lynn, Mass.) was a dominant force in the paint for the visitors. The forward poured in 15 points on six of ten shooting, grabbed eight rebounds and turned away five shots. Junior Jake Laga (Northampton, Mass.) added 16 points and distributed six assists, while sophomore Abi Akanni (Fitchburg, Mass.) had a well-rounded performance with 10 points, four rebounds and four helpers. 

Junior Joseph Henry (Medway, Mass.) was the high-point man for Roger Williams with 19. Classmate Ryan Palumbo (Warwick, R.I.) dropped in 15 scores and dished out five assists, while freshman Josh Syska (Peabody, Mass.) contributed 11 points and five boards off the bench.        

With 5:51 remaining in the first half, the Corsairs went on a 17-4 run to take a 34-22 advantage into the break. 

In the second stanza, UMass Dartmouth built their lead up to 17 points when Laga found Akanni for a deep ball with 16:55 left. Two minutes later the Hawks got the deficit into single digits on a pair of makes from the stripe by Syska. With four minutes left in the game, Roger Williams guard Travis Fonseca (Bridgeport, Conn.) converted the back-end of a pair of free throws to tie the game at 61 a piece.

The Corsairs retaliated with an 8-1 run, capped by a three-pointer from Bouchard.  With ticks left, the Hawks cut the deficit down to two points, but two makes from the free line from Laga sealed the victory for UMass Dartmouth.    
Roger Williams exploded for 54-second half points and converted on 27 of 34 attempts from the charity stripe in the game. The Corsairs generated 16 assists compared to the home teams 13.  
UMass Dartmouth returns to play when the team travels to Miami, Fla. to compete in the 2013 Adidas Holiday Slam tournament. 
The Corsairs will play a pair of games with the first game coming against Geneva College on December 30 at 6 p.m. and the second against Goucher College on December31 at 4 p.m.