Women's Basketball Sunken By La Salle, 50-44, in Overtime

Women's Basketball Sunken By La Salle, 50-44, in Overtime

Rhody Starters
Melendez, Wallack, Banker, Lewis, T. Johnson

La Salle Starters
Beslow, Alston, Cropper, Owens, Burdgess

Rhody Leaders
Points: Melendez (15)
Rebounds: Wallack, Palmer (8)
Assists: Whittaker (3)
Steals: Melendez (3)
Blocks: Melendez, Palmer (8)
Minutes Played: Wallack (42)

La Salle Leaders
Points: Burdgess (15)
Rebounds: Cropper (10)
Assists: Cropper (10)
Steals: Cropper, Lee (4)
Blocks: Beslow, Owens, Lee, Dickens (1)
Minutes Played: Owens (40)

How it Happened
Trailing by 10 (34-24) just five minutes into the second frame, Rhode Island (5-9, 0-1) used a 10-2 run to cut its deficit to two (36-34) with 8:19 remaining. The Rams finally managed to even the score at 40 apiece after a layup by Tayra Melendez with 1:41 left in regulation but La Salle (6-7, 1-0) then pulled back in front, 42-40. Melendez struck again, however, knotting the score at 42-42 with just 11 ticks left on the clock. The Explorers had the final possession of regulation, but missed a pair of shots in the final three seconds, sending both teams into overtime for the first time this season. 

There, the Rams held La Salle to a 2-for-5 showing from the floor and a 4-for-10 performance from the line, but were unable to put the ball in their own basket for the first 4:53 of play.

Stat of the Day
4 - The number of times Rhode Island went five-plus minutes without scoring. The Rams' longest drought - which came in the first half - spanned 5:58.

Inside the Box Score

  • Despite Rhode Island tying the game twice in the final two minutes of regulation, La Salle never trailed in the game, after it took a 13-11 lead with 11:14 to go in the first half.
  • La Salle held a significant edge on the boards, 55-38, marking just the second time this season that URI has been out-rebounded by its opponent. URI had entered the game leading the Atlantic 10 with a +8.2 rebounding margin. La Salle's 55 boards were the team's most in a game this season and just the second time the team recorded 50+ this year. 
  • The two teams combined to go just 15-for-31 from the foul line. Rhody was exactly 50% (6-12) while La Salle finished 9-of-19 (47.4%).
  • Rhody and La Salle also were plagued by poor ball control, combining for 44 turnovers (URI-23, LAS-21) opposite just 18 assists (URI-10, LAS-8). Four of Rhody's turnovers came in overtime. 
  • The Rams have now dropped seven consecutive Atlantic 10 openers, including back-to-back conference openers to La Salle.
  • Sophomore Tayra Melendez led Rhode Island with a game-high 15 points. She was the only Rhody player to score in double figures. Melendez also added three steals, two assists and a pair of blocks. 
  • Freshman Kiara Palmer matched her career-high with 22 minutes on the floor. In that time, the Rhody rookie grabbed eight rebounds and blocked two shots while adding four points and a steal.
  • Senior Kerry Wallack also finished with eight boards to go along with her eight points.
  • Sophomore Tati Johnson finished one point off her season-high in scoring, recording nine points on the afternoon.

What's Next
Rhode Island will now hit the road for the first time since its Dec. 4th game at Brown. The Rams are set to play at Richmond on Jan. 5 and at Saint Joseph's on Jan. 8 before returning to the Ryan Center for a Jan. 11 game against George Mason.