Carter & Palumbo Help Anchormen Grab First Place in the Little East

More news about: Rhode Island College

Willimantic, Conn.-Senior guard Tahrike Carter (Brooklyn, NY) finished with 14 points, five rebounds and three steals, while junior guard Michael Palumbo (Providence, RI) scored 11 of his 13 points in the second half, as the Rhode Island College men's basketball team knocked off Eastern Connecticut, 60-50, on Saturday afternoon at Geissler Gymnasium in Little East Conference action.


With the win, Rhode Island College (16-2, 8-1 LEC) avenges its early-season loss to the Warriors and moves into sole possession of first place in the Little East.


For the seventh time this season, the Anchormen held an opponent to 50 points or less, while Saturday's contest also marks the lowest scoring total of the season for Eastern Connecticut (13-6, 7-2 LEC). RIC has won nine straight games.


After the two teams exchanged baskets to open the game, the Warriors wrestled the lead away from Rhode Island College and went into the break with a 27-24 advantage. Both squads continued to swap leads throughout the start of the second half as well, but with the score knotted at 38 with 9:59 remaining, Rhode Island College exploded for a 22-4 run to pull away from the Warriors, spearheaded by a trio of three-pointers from Palumbo.


Once again, defense led the way for RIC down the stretch, as the visitors held Eastern to just 12 points through the final 12 minutes of action, while forcing 20 turnovers. The Anchormen turned the ball over just nine times, but were outrebounded by the Warriors, 44-32.


After shooting just 27 percent from the floor in the first half, Rhode Island College went 15-for-28 (54 percent) in the second half, while holding the Warriors to just 29 percent shooting in the final 20 minutes.


In total, RIC shot 40 percent (23-for-58) from the floor, 39 percent (5-for-13) from long range and 64 percent (9-for-14) from the free throw line. Eastern Connecticut shot 37 percent (18-for-49) from the floor, 19 percent (3-for-16) from beyond the arc and 58 percent (11-for-19) from the free throw line.


Senior center Steven Roberts (New Haven, CT) and junior guard Nyheem Sanders (Pawtucket, RI) each finished with eight points for RIC off the bench, while senior guard Ethan Gaye (Providence, RI) registered six points and a team-high six rebounds.


Junior guard Brian Salzillo (North Haven, CT) led the Warriors with 14 points, six rebounds, three assists and pair of steals, while senior forward Chris Robitaille (Canton, CT) added 12 points, seven rebounds and three assists. Freshman guard Trachone Preston (Enfield, CT) chipped in with eight points and eight rebounds, while junior forward Mike Garrow (Terryville, CT) finished with eight points as well.


In upcoming action, Rhode Island College will host Amherst on Tuesday, Jan. 29 (7 p.m.).