Melendez Pours in 29 as Rams' Second Half Scoring Outpaces UMass Lowell

Melendez Pours in 29 as Rams' Second Half Scoring Outpaces UMass Lowell

Rhody Starters:
Melendez, Wallack, Banker, Lewis, Tabakman

UMass Lowell Starters:
Fiola, Doucette, Samuels, McRoy, Hayner

Rhody Leaders:
Points: Melendez (29)
Rebounds: Wallack (11)
Assists: Melendez (5)
Steals: Whitaker (2)
Blocked Shots: Melendez (2)
Minutes Played: Melendez (40)

UMass Lowell Leaders:
Points: Hayner (18)
Rebounds: McRoy (11)
Assists: Hamilton (2)
Steals: Dunphy, Samuels (2)
Blocked Shots: Doucette, Stewart (1)
Minutes Played: Doucette, Samuels, McRoy (23)

How It Happened:
Rhody shot 60.7% (17-for-28) from the floor and 77.8 percent (14-for-18) from the free throw in the second half, outscoring UMass Lowell, 52-39 en route to a 77-70 victory Tuesday.

The Rams trailed by as many as 10 points in the first half after a UMass Lowell bucket in transition made it 29-19 with 3:38 to play. URI trailed 31-25 at the break.

Thanks to a 15-1 run early in the second half, Rhody pulled away and never looked back. Tayra Melendez scored 24 of her career-high 29 points in the final 20 minutes, connecting on 9-of-10 from the floor.

Inside the Box Score:
* While Melendez's career-high in scoring was impressive, the sophomore from Mattapan, Mass. made all eight of her two-point field goal attempts in the second half and was 8-of-11 from inside the arc for the game. She also tied her season-high in assists (5).

* Kerry Wallack registered her second double-double of the season, finishing with 18 points and 11 rebounds.  She hit back-to-back 3-pointers during the Rhody 15-1 second half run, which helped propel the Rams to victory.

* Samantha Tabakman did most of her damage inside in the first half, chipping in with 10 points (5-10 FG) and seven rebounds.

* Kiara Palmer provided a lift off the bench, with six points and nine boards in 15 minutes of action.  

* Rhody outscored UML, 38-18, in the paint and grabbed 17 offensive boards - translating to 15 second-chance points.

* Lowell did most of its damage from the outside, knocking down 13 3FG.  The River Hawks' pressure D also forced 19 Rhody turnovers.

* Brianna Thomas made all six of her free throw attempts.  For the season, she is 14-of-16 from the charity stripe (87.5%).

Stat of the Day:
51:  Rhody posted its second straight game - and third overall - with 50+ rebounds. Seven Rams had at least four rebounds and six Rams corralled at least one offensive board.

What's Next:
The Rams return to action on Saturday, Dec. 14 when they host Vermont at 2 p.m.