February 21, 2012



RIC Dominates the Glass in, 79-48, Win Over Plymouth State

Providence, R.I.-Senior forward Mason Choice (Newport, RI) posted a game-high 18 points on 6-of-7 shooting, to go along with 12 rebounds and three assists, while classmate center Mike Akinrola (Woonsocket, RI) scored his 1,000th career point as the Rhode Island College men’s basketball team cruised past Plymouth State, 79-48, in the First Round of the 2012 Little East Conference Championship.


This marks the eighth straight season that the Anchormen have advanced to the conference tourney semifinal.


The Anchormen (21-5) will travel to Willimantic, Conn. to face off against second-seeded Western Connecticut on Friday night at 7:30 p.m. in the semifinals hosted by Eastern Connecticut. RIC split the season series with the Colonials on the year and most recently edged Western at home, 79-78, on Feb. 14.



 Senior center Mike Akinrola


With the win over Plymouth State (9-16), No. 23 RIC extends its winning streak to five games and remains undefeated at The Murray Center with a 14-0 home record.


"We showed up ready to play and got on top of them early," RIC Head Coach Bob Walsh said. "We attacked their zone well and did a great job on the glass. And what can you say about Mike Akinrola? He played 27 total minutes as a freshman and now we are celebrating him as a 1,000 point scorer."


Four Anchormen notched double-figures, including Akinrola who finished with 14 points and five rebounds on 6-of-7 shooting. After coming into Tuesday’s contest stuck on 999 points, Akinrola recorded his 1,000th career point on the very first basket of the game, becoming the 31st player in program history to do so. Meanwhile, sophomore guard Michael Palumbo (Providence, RI) tallied 12 points on 4-of-5 shooting from downtown, while sophomore guard Avery King (Pawtucket, RI) added 10 points of his own.



 Senior forward Mason Choice


RIC dominated the glass en route to the victory, as they outrebounded Plymouth State, 42-21, and corralled 14 offensive boards as a team. Junior guard Tahrike Carter (Brooklyn, NY), who finished with a total of nine boards on the night, hauled in seven of those 13 offensive rebounds, while also totaling seven points and four assists.


The Anchormen were deadly from outside, as they shot 53 percent (10-for-19) from the beyond the three-point arc, while hitting 56 percent (29-for-52) of their shots from the floor throughout the game. Ball movement was a huge part of RIC’s success in the win as well, as they finished with 20 assists, as opposed to just six for PSU.


On the defensive end, the Anchormen held the Panthers to just 36 percent shooting (16-for-44) on the evening, including 28 percent (2-for-11) shooting from the three. Rhode Island College also forced the Panthers into 18 turnovers, although they committed 21 of their own.


Senior guard Brian Chergey (Bow, NH) led the Panthers with 11 points and three rebounds, while sophomore guard Petey Skevas (Wethersfield, CT) added nine points, four assists, three boards and two steals. Sophomore guard Sheldon Benson (Pembroke, NH) registered seven points, three boards and a pair of steals, while freshman guard Shomari Morgan (Manchester, NH) notched six points of his own.


Freshman forward Jacob Page (Brookline, MA) and freshman forward Chris Burton (New Rochelle, NY) each finished with six points.