Fordham began the game with the same defensive intensity that they showed in the second half of their close loss to LaSalle on Saturday. They went shot for shot with URI down the stretch of first half and went into halftime with a 2-point lead. But, URI went on a run around the ten minute mark of the second half that Fordham couldn't quite answer.
In fact the first half of the contest was remarkably similar to the last time these teams played each other on February 1st, Fordham's last in-conference win. In that game Fordham led by 1-point going into the half, Rhody shot 50% for the game, URI only converted 60% of their free-throws and Forham had 8-made 3's. Tonight, URI again shot exactly 50% from the field, Fordham had exactly 8 made 3's, and URI was even worse at the free throw line converting a dismal 56% of their opportunities. However, this time URI was the team to make a second period run, they dropped 46 points and shot 60% from downtown in that frame.
Senior guard Branden Frazier led the way for Fordham again with 22 points, 7 assists and 4 steals. Mandell Thomas chippied in with 11 points and Ryan Rhoomes scored 10 with 7 boards. Freshman Jon Severe only had 3 points on 1-of-12 shooting from the field. Severe hurt his groin in the first half which seemed to affect his scoring ability and he was unavaiable for most of the second half. Guard Bryan Smith got into foul trouble but continued his strong play with 3 big first half triples which got Fordham going on offense.
URI had four players in double figures. Guards E.C. Matthews and Xavier Mumford each scored 21. Mumford hit 4 big 3-pointers to go along with 7 rebounds.Both Matthews and Mumford keyed the 15-8 6:00 minute run in the middle of the second half that finished off Fordham. Forward Hassan Martin was defensive force in the paint with 6 blocks to go along with 13 points.
This was a very tough loss as Fordham had hoped to possibly leapfrog URI into 11th place in the A-10 by winning out.
The Rams conclude the regular season this Saturday, March 8th at Rose Hill against the George Washington University Colonials. Our coverage begins at 4:25PM on 90.7FM and wfuvsports.org.
Don't miss One on One, New York's Longest Running Sports Call-in Show, as we talk Fordham hoops in the 2:30PM Fordham Focus segment.
Listen to the One on One Postgame Report below with comments from Associate Head Coach David Duke.