December 8, 2007


Rhode Island College Menís Basketball Score Report

Keene, NH






Rhode Island College (7-1, 2-0)

#16 Keene State (5-2, 1-1)







Anchormen Stay Unbeaten in LEC Play

            Keene, NHóRhode Island College junior guard Tirrell Hill (Bronx, NY)and freshman guard Anthony Fortes (East Providence, RI) scored career-highs of 29 and 22 points, respectively, to help lead Rhode Island College past No. 16 Keene State, 96-91, in overtime in a battle of Little East Conference heavyweights at Spaulding Gymnasium on Saturday afternoon.



 Junior Guard Tirrell Hill


The Anchormen up their record to 7-1 overall and 2-0 in the LEC, while Keene State suffers its second consecutive loss, falling to 5-2 overall and 1-1 in league action.


The first half featured runs by both teams. Keene State jumped out to a 26-9 lead, but RIC answered with a 17-2 run, capped off by a Hill three-point basket, to take a 29-28 lead at the 3:45 mark. The Owls came back as senior guard Kevin Ritter (Hopewell Junction, NY) hit a three-pointer in the closing seconds to send the Owls to the locker room with a 35-32 lead.


RIC started the second half on a 12-3 run to take a 44-38 lead, but KSC hit three-pointers on their next three possessions to go up, 47-46. There were several lead changes as both teams battled into the closing minutes of regulation. A three-pointer by junior guard Bobby Bailey (Fall River, MA) put RIC up, 75-69, with 2:02 to play.


A pair of free throws by junior forward Tyler Kathan (Ludlow, VT) and a basket award to freshman guard Tavon Brantley (Bridgeport, CT) on a goaltending call made it 75-72 with 1:09 to go. Foul shots by Hill put RIC up, 78-74, with 28.7 to play. KSC senior guard Anthony Licitra cut the lead to one,  78-77, on a three-point basket with 19.6 seconds to go. Fortes hit a couple of free throws to make it 80-77 with 15.1 second left on the clock.


After a miss by Ritter, senior forward Nick Drouin (Weare, NH) grabbed the offensive rebound and fired the ball out to senior guard Matt Hickey (Mahopac, NY) who hit a long-range three pointer three feet beyond the arc at the buzzer to send the game into overtime with the score knotted at 80-all.


The Anchormen took the lead for good, 84-83, on a lay-up by junior forward Kaseem Johnson (New Haven, CT) at the 4:10 mark. Bailey followed with a three-pointer and Hill hit a couple of free throws to make it 89-83 with 1:44 to go. Hill connected on four free throws down the stretch as RIC held off the Owls.


Bailey scored 16 points, junior guard Cameron Stewart (Newport, RI) had 13 points and nine rebounds, while junior center Will Lyons (Warwick, RI) finished with 10 points to round out the double figure scorers for RIC, who knocked down 33-of-46 shots from the line. Hill was 16-for-20 from the charity stripe, tying the third and fourth marks for free throws made and attempted, respectively, in RIC menís basketball history. Fortes was a perfect 4-for-4 from behind the three-point arc.



 Freshman Guard Anthony Fortes


Kathan, who had four three-pointers in the game, led the Owls with 20 points and 12 rebounds.  Ritter had 18 points, Licitra added 15 points and Hickey finished with 11 points for KSC.


It was the third consecutive win for the Anchormen over the Owls. After losing both regular season contests last season, RIC downed Keene State in the title game of the 2007 Little East Conference Menís Basketball Tournament and in the NCAA Tournament to advance to the Elite Eight.


It was the first win for the Anchormen at Spaulding Gymnasium since Jan. 15, 2005.


In upcoming action, Rhode Island College will travel to Trinity on Tuesday, Dec. 11 for a 7:30 p.m. game. Keene State will travel to the Montclair (N.J.) State tournament on Fri-Sat., Dec. 28-29.