January 8, 2015



Medford, Mass.-Senior guard Eric Alleyne (Watertown, MA) scored 16 points and handed out four assists as the Rhode Island College menís basketball team rallied down the stretch to open the 2015 portion of their schedule with a non-conference, 61-58, victory over Tufts at Cousens Gym on Thursday evening.


The Anchormen (9-3) opened an eight-point, 12-4, lead when Alleyne buried a trey off an assist from senior center Victor Smith (Providence, RI) with 14:36 remaining in the first half.


Tufts (4-7) used a 17-0 run over the next 6:16, capped by a jump shot by junior guard Ryan Spadaford (Rockville Centre, NY), to up the Tufts lead to nine, 21-12 with 8:20 left to play. The Anchormen battled back down the stretch and a three-pointer from senior forward Chris Burton (New Rochelle, NY) with 1:01 left in the stanza gave the Anchormen a 31-28 lead, which is where it would stay entering halftime.


RIC shot 38.7 percent (12-for-31) from the field in the half, while Tufts shot percent 44.0 percent (11-for-25).



 Senior forward Christ Burton


The second half saw the Anchormen open up a 10-point lead, 39-29, when Burton buried a three-pointer off a feed from Alleyne with 15:17 left to play. The Jumbos would battle back and a three ball by Spadaford off a feed from sophomore guard Tarik Smith (Bronx, NY) with 9:50 left to play knotted the score at 44-44.


The teams would trade baskets in the ensuing minutes with neither team holding more than a three point lead. With 2:35 remaining in the game, Tufts held a 58-55 advantage, which is when Burton took over. He scored the next six points with a layup and draining 4-for-6 from the charity stripe, Burton also hauled in an important defensive rebound to secure the RIC victory, 61-58.


Spadaford paced the Jumbos with 19 points off the bench, while sophomore center Hunter Sabety (Oceanside, NY) chipped in with 10 points and six boards. Tufts shot 44.2 percent (19-for-43) from the field, 44.4 percent (8-for-18) from three-point land and 80.0 percent (12-for-15) from the free throw line.


Burton led the team with 19 points, nine boards and three assists, Alleyne poured in 16 points on 4-for-9 shooting from downtown. The Anchormen finished the game shooting 37.3 percent (22-for-59) from the field, 42.9 percent (9-for-21) from downtown and 66.7 percent (8-for-12) from the charity stripe. 


In upcoming action, Rhode Island College will resume Little East Conference action at home against Keene State on Saturday, Jan. 10 (3 p.m.).