Hot Shooting for Roger Williams Spoils Senior Night for Men's Basketball

Hot Shooting for Roger Williams Spoils Senior Night for Men's Basketball

MILTON, Mass. – The Roger Williams University men's basketball team cruised past Curry College, 96-76, in Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC) play on Wednesday night at Katz Gymnasium. Prior to the game, the Colonels honored its three seniors: Louis Stein (Mount Olive, N.J.), Alex Stein (Mount Olive, N.J.), and James Gibson (Norwalk, Conn.) in a special pregame ceremony.

The Hawks (13-11 overall, 10-5 CCC) finished the contest with five players in double figures, four of which were starters. Senior Jake Heaton (Shelton, Conn.) led all scorers with a season-high 26 points. He knocked down eight threes and also converted two free throws. Additionally, he added three rebounds and four assists in 23 minutes. Junior Rich Pugliese (Middlebury, Conn.) followed with 20 points on a perfect 7-for-7 shooting performance, highlighted by 6-for-6 from distance. Senior Austin Coene (Tyngsboro, Mass.) pitched in a near double-double of 15 points and nine rebounds. Sophomore Doug Hostetler (Somers, Conn.) paced all reserves with 11 points on 4-for-5 shooting, three of which came from three-point range.

Three Curry players scored in double figures led by junior Jared Thorpe-Johnson with a team-best 27 points on 11-of-25 shooting. Thorpe Johnson also grabbed eight boards while adding one assist and one steal. Junior Kieran Carroll (Greenwich, Conn.) and A. Stein had strong games as well for the hosts. Carroll finished with 13 points, seven rebounds, and three assists, while A. Stein poured in 11 points to go along with two rebounds, two assists, and a steal.

Roger Williams came charging out of the gates, scoring 15 of the first 19 points of the contest capped by a three from Heaton. The Hawks never trailed in the game and controlled the tempo throughout. Midway through the opening stanza, the Hawks stretched their lead to 15 at 33-18 following a layup from Coene. Leading by 13 with 4:23 left in the half, Roger Williams reeled off a 10-6 run snapped by a three from sophomore RJ Hadfield (Warwick, R.I.) as the Hawks entered the intermission with a 51-34 advantage. The visitors shot 56.3 percent from the floor in the first half. 11 field goals came from three-point range on only 16 attempts. Curry closed the first half shooting 48.4 percent from the floor, including 40 percent from beyond the arc.

Roger Williams came out of the half firing on all cylinders with a 7-0 run to push the lead to 24 after a free throw from Coene. Nearly halfway through the frame, the lead ballooned to 31 following a three-pointer from Hostetler. The Colonels used a late 5-0 run to close the deficit to 20 before the end of the contest, an eventual 96-76 final.

The Hawks had the edge in shooting percentage, registering a 50 percent clip compared to 44.8 percent from Curry. Roger Williams knocked down a season-high 18 threes on 33 attempts while Curry converted 11-of-20 shots from distance. The Hawks held a 42-34 edge on the glass while the visitors handed out 23 assists on 35 baskets. The Colonels finished the contest with a 36-32 advantage in points in the paint.

Curry (1-23 overall, 0-15 CCC) will wrap up the season on Saturday, February 16 at Salve Regina. Tip-off is set for 3:00 p.m. Roger Williams returns home to host Western New England on Saturday at 3:00 p.m. 

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