PROVIDENCE, R.I. –University of Massachusetts Dartmouth men's basketball junior Atakan Akcam (Ankara, Turkey) put forth a career-night, scoring 14 of his 28 points down the stretch, but the effort was just shy in lifting the Corsairs over Rhode Island College as the Anchormen took a 79-70 victory on home court Wednesday night.
Score: UMass Dartmouth 70, RIC 79
Records: UMass Dartmouth 12-12, 5-8 LEC | RIC 7-17, 4-9 LEC
How it Happened
Akcam paced the offense of the Corsairs as he dropped in a new career-high of 28 points to lead the game, knocking down 6-of-8 from beyond the arc, and adding six rebounds. Classmate Arinze Obiora (Lagos, Nigeria) produced his 22nd double-digit scoring output of the season, adding 18 points and collecting nine rebounds. Brandon Williams Jr. (Dorchester, Mass.) continued his quality play of late, scoring 16 points and handing out a team-high four assists.
Rhode Island College had a quartet of players in double-digits as sophomore CJ Donaldson (Bridgeport, Conn.) led the way with 26 points and 10 of those coming from the free-throw line where he was 83% for the night. Grant Gillis (Jamestown, R.I.) finished with 17 points and a game-high 11 rebounds while freshman Adham Floyd (Worcester, Mass.) achieved a double-double with his 11 points, 10 rebound outing.
The Anchormen got out their largest lead of the first half at 5:47 to go when Floyd buried his second three pointer of the game to cap a 14-5 run in favor of the host to establish a 30-17 margin on the scoreboard. UMass Dartmouth began to up its intensity in the remainder of the period, allowing just eight points in the final five minutes. That opened up a scoring run for the Corsairs as eight unanswered points ignited a 15-8 drive to cut the deficit 38-32 before the intermission.
UMass Dartmouth started the second half cold, missing seven of its first eight shots to open up the action. With 14:47 left in regulation, the Blue & Gold began to build offensive momentum, starting when Obiora knocked down a pair from the charity stripe to trim the deficit to 44-37, but the Anchormen scorers could not be denied as a layup from Donaldson initiated a 14-7 run, pushing the gap back up to 59-45.
With 6:35 remaining in the contest, Rhode Island College took its largest-lead at 17 points when Floyd responded to a layup by Obiora, connecting on another shot from deep. Akcam took over for UMass Dartmouth late, scoring 14 of his game-high 28 in the final five minutes of play, but the effort came too late to reverse the outcome, as buzzer sounded on the 79-70 final.
Inside the Numbers
- UMass Dartmouth had a slight advantage down low as it controlled scoring in the paint by a 38-34 clip.
- Rhode Island College were sent to the charity stripe 28 times in the game, hitting on 22 chances, while the Corsairs only had seven opportunities in the entire game for free points.
- The Anchormen had a formidable lead on the glass, reeling in 49 rebounds to the visitors 37.
- UMD improved upon its three-point shooting of late, hitting 8-of-17 from deep (47.1%). The last time they finished above 45% from three was on Jan. 24 against RIC when the Corsairs were 7-of-12 from the triple.
The Corsairs return to the Tripp Center for the last home game of the regular-season when it hosts senior day on Saturday Feb. 17 against Keene St. with tip-off coming at 3:00 p.m.