Thursday, March 15, 2018

Rhode Island’s Matthews buries OU

Brian Fluharty-USA TODAY Sports
With just under two minutes, after Trae Young threw up back-to-back 35-footers that clanked off the rim, Rhode Island redshirt senior E.C. Matthews put up a wide open three, following a beautiful jab-step that sent Sooner star freshman to the floor, and the shot found the bottom of the net to give the Rams a lead that they would never relinquish.

Cyril Langevine extended the lead with 1:03 left at the free-throw line to 76-72, and Oklahoma answered as they marched right down the floor and Kameron McGusty pulled the Sooners within two with a floater.

But the senior Matthews stole the show late as the lefty crossed over and buried a three from the top of the key on a step-back jumper to extend the lead to 79-74 and Rhode Island cruised to a 83-78 win.

Matthews finished with 16 points, on 6-of-14 shooting, and five rebounds. Fatts Russell finished with 15 points off the bench with 13 coming in the second half. Langevine finished with 14 on 5-of-8 shooting, and Jared Terrell was the only other Ram in double-figures as he finished with 13 points, six rebounds and five assist.

Young finished his only tournament matchup with 28 points, on 9-of-18 shooting, seven assist and five rebounds. Jamuni McNeace was he only other Sooner in double figures with 14 points and 10 rebounds.

Rhode Island won the game shooting 39 percent from the field and after being out-rebounded 54-41, but it didn’t matter as the Rams made smart plays down the stretch and downed the Sooners.

Hurley and the Rams advance to the second round of the tournament and will face the winner of Duke and Iona.

Find me on Twitter @MitchellDeAnte


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