Providence needed Rodney Bullock to step up his scoring punch, and he did just that. The Preseason All-Big East Second Team selection led the way with 17 points and 9 rebounds, even though his presence wasn’t felt down the stretch in the second half.
The first half wasn’t the prettiest of 20 minutes. The two teams combined for 23 turnovers (15 for UW, 8 for PC). The Friars struggled with the Huskies’ 2-3 zone for the first 11 minutes or so, but quickly began to take advantage of Husky turnovers.
The Friars rode a 13-0 run towards the end of the end of the half, but Washington was saved by two David Crisp threes to halt the PC run before it got out of hand. Providence led 37-30 after the first 20 minutes.
In a twist of sort, Washington took advantage of Friar turnovers to start the second half. The teams played a gritty first five minutes, and back-to-back threes from Bullock and Maliek White got the Friars back in the right direction. This was followed by a Drew Edwards 3-point play that would put them up 54-47 at the under 12 timeout.
Then came the sophomores. Edwards continued to provide a much-needed spark off the bench, while Kalif Young worked efficiently on offense. I’d be making a big mistake if I didn’t mention Maliek White again. He finished with six assists and was terrific off the bench as well. This is the depth that we spoke about all offseason. Tonight was a glimpse into how beneficial it can really be.
It would get a little dicey towards the end of this one, as Washington cut the deficit to three, but the Friars would hold on to win by 7.
- Rodney Bullock showed up for Providence tonight, much to the delight of Ed Cooley. The Friars will only go as far as he and Kyron Cartwright take them.
- Drew Edwards was awesome off the bench tonight. He finished with 11 points and 4 boards.
- Isaiah Jackson was off for the majority of the game tonight. But again, that’s where the depth comes in handy. The bench was able to step up in a big way.
- Providence shot 51 percent from the field and 53 percent from the 3-point line tonight.
- The sloppy play never really came to an end tonight. Each team finished with 19 turnovers.
Providence returns to MSG tomorrow night to face off against St. Louis in the 2K Classic championship at 7:30 p.m.