Warwick, R.I. – February 24, 2016: The CCRI Knights basketball team finished out their regular season Tuesday night as they traveled to Franklin, MA to face off against Region XXI rival Dean College. The two teams had already gone head to head twice this season with the Bulldogs taking both games. The Knights fought hard Tuesday night but once again fell to Dean, 89-85. The loss puts the Knights record at 15-12 and 12-4 in Region XXI play.
The first half was a roller coaster ride for both teams. Dean flew off the tip to a 7-0 advantage, only to see the Knights go on a 28-4 run to take a 17 point lead. The Knights lead didn’t last very long as the Bulldogs caught fire and went on a 35-20 run in the next 10 minutes to take a 46-38 lead. The teams traded 3-pointers in the final minute to put the score at 49-41 going into halftime with Dean leading.
The Knights just could not get over the hill in the second half as that eight-point advantage seemed insurmountable. Dean was able to hover around a 10 point lead for most of the half until the final minutes where the Knights made one last run but just ran out of time. A big key in the game was the 3-point line. The Knights hit only seven of 24 attempts from beyond the arc while Dean hit eight 3-pointers, but only had to take 14 shots to do so. Once again though, the Knights offense wasn’t a problem as 85 points is a good scoring effort, but allowing 89 was just another sub-par defensive effort that has plagued the Knights all season.
Freshman Tri-Captain Edvaldo Ferreira (Cape Verde) once again posted big number for the Knights while carrying the workload for the team. Ferreira posted 22 points and 20 rebounds for his second 20-20 game on the season along with his 21st double-double on the season. Valdo still leads the NJCAA DII with RPG (14.3) and Blocks per game (5.0).
Jessy Taveras (Cranston, RI) and Jordan Grant (New London, CT) both dropped 12 points for the Knights as Grant also added seven rebounds, five of which were offensive. Elijah Vazquez (Woonsocket, RI) knocked down three 3-pointers on his way to 11 points, and Tri-Captain Adrian La Fleur (Sydney, Australia) filled the box score yet again with nine points, eight assists, five steals and four rebounds.
Chris Gaines (Covert, MI) and Charlie Brown (Riverside, RI) both provided sparks off the bench for the Knights as each scored seven points with two steals and Gaines added five rebounds.
CCRI Stats can be viewed on the NJCAA website, follow this link to go directly to the NJCAA page for our men’s basketball team.
Head Coach Rick Harris commented after the game: "This was an outstanding effort and determination by our young men Tuesday night. They never quit and grinded until they put themselves in position to possibly pull out the game. A little luck here or there and this type of game could go our way. I believe the game was a building block in character development and I look forward to seeing the young men in action in three short days. As I told them anything is possible when we step on the court Saturday to play for the Region XXI New England Championship. With the kind of effort and togetherness that I saw tonight I feel great about our chances Saturday. I do know they will represent CCRI proudly."
The Knights will get another shot at Dean on Saturday at 3:00pm as the two teams will face off for the fourth time this season. This game though will be played for the Region XXI Championship and the winner advances to the Districts.
The Community College of Rhode Island, New England’s largest comprehensive community college, enrolls nearly 18,000 students in credit courses and thousands more in non-credit and job training classes. Its athletic program boasts 12 varsity programs and an academic support program for all student-athletes.