Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?

March Madness

Providence, Richmond meet for spot in Sweet 16

Providence, Richmond meet for spot in Sweet 16

Fourth-seeded Providence felt it had something to prove in the first round of the NCAA Tournament against #13 South Dakota State.

The Friars (26-5) beat the Jackrabbits and silenced some of their critics, but a win over 12th-seeded Richmond (24-12) on Saturday evening in the second round in Buffalo would be much more important.

A victory would give the Friars a spot in the Midwest Regional semifinals March 25 in Chicago. Providence hasn’t advanced past the first weekend of the NCAAs since reaching the Elite Eight under coach Pete Gillen in 1997.

Despite Providence’s gaudy record, the quality of the Friars’ Big East regular-season title has been questioned for good reason. The Friars had three games canceled because of a COVID pause in January and won the title despite playing three fewer conference games than a Villanova team that swept them during the regular season.

All three of those unplayed games would have been against NCAA Tournament teams.

“We knew everyone thought there was going to be an upset (by South Dakota State),” said Noah Horchler, who averages 9.7 points and 8.3 rebounds for the Friars. “And that kind of fueled the fire behind us, and we came out and showed we were determined to win.”

Then again, one could say the Friars again are fortunate to avoid a potentially tougher opponent after Richmond led for the last 14 minutes in its 67-63 upset Thursday of fifth-seeded Iowa (26-10), which won the Big Ten tournament on Sunday.

“In order to advance in these tournaments, there has to be some luck,” Providence coach Ed Cooley said before his team’s second-round matchup was determined. “I think we’re crazy if we don’t think that, and our players are kind of driving off of it.”

In a 66-57 win over South Dakota State on Thursday, Providence limited the Jackrabbits to 30.4 percent 3-point shooting (7 of 23) and kept the game at its type of pace. The Jackrabbits entered as the best 3-point shooting team in the nation.

Richmond did much the same thing against Iowa, limiting the Hawkeyes to 63 points and 6-for-29 (20.7 percent) shooting from beyond the arc.

Richmond earned its way into the NCAA Tournament by winning the Atlantic-10 tournament and an automatic bid before capturing its first NCAA victory since the 2010-11 team beat Vanderbilt and Morehead State to reach the Sweet 16.

Jacob Gilyard, who averages 13.6 points and 5.4 assists, keyed the win over Iowa with 24 points and six assists in 40 minutes.

Teammate Tyler Burton added 18 points and a game-high 11 rebounds, while Nathan Cayo had 15 points.

“It’s tough to try and guard us,” Gilyard said. “We’re a fairly confident group, and I think last weekend showed that, and I don’t think anybody doesn’t believe in each other.”

Providence sixth man Jared Bynum scored 12 points in 25 minutes Thursday and could be a momentum-changer.

Friars 6-foot-10 center Nate Watson, who averages a team-high 13.6 points per game, has been held to single digits in three of his last four games, but he could pose problems for the smaller Spiders.

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

PlayAction Podcast

PlayAction Pod | SGPN’s $500 NBA Finals Prop Contest

NBA

Terrell Furman Jr. from SGPN’s NBA Gambling Podcast joins the show to preview the NBA Finals. We break down each question in SGPN’s $500 NBA Finals...

PlayAction Pod | Talking NFL Draft With OddsChecker
PlayAction Pod | Talking NFL Draft With OddsChecker

NFL

OddsChecker’s NFL Draft Props Contest  Completely free to enter. Just click the link, sign up, and answer all the questions. Whoever gets the most...

PlayAction Pod | Talking Final Four With Screen The Screener
PlayAction Pod | Talking Final Four With Screen The Screener

March Madness

Gus Kearns of the Screen The Screener Podcast joins the show to break down this weekend’s Final Four.     0:00 Intro 0:35 Gus talks...

PlayAction Pod | Talking March Madness With Quarter4
PlayAction Pod | Talking March Madness With Quarter4

March Madness

Danijela Covic, Co-Founder and CSO of Quarter4.io, joins the show to talk about the predictive data Quarter4 is making available to PlayAction users during...

PlayAction Pod | Talking Longhorn Hoops With InsideTexas
PlayAction Pod | Talking Longhorn Hoops With InsideTexas

March Madness

Joe Cook of InsideTexas.com joins the show to talk Longhorn Hoops.   0:00 Intro 0:49 What were the expectations for Texas coming into Chris...

PlayAction Pod | Talking Ohio State Hoops With BuckeyeScoop
PlayAction Pod | Talking Ohio State Hoops With BuckeyeScoop

March Madness

Tony Gerdeman of BuckeyeScoop.com joins the show to talk Ohio State Basketball in advance of March Madness

PlayAction Pod | Talking Houston Hoops With Kris Gardner
PlayAction Pod | Talking Houston Hoops With Kris Gardner

March Madness

Kris Gardner of The Houston Roundball Review – TheHRR.com – joins the show to talk about the Houston Cougars, their season so far and...

PlayAction Pod | Talking Arizona Hoops With AllSportsTucson
PlayAction Pod | Talking Arizona Hoops With AllSportsTucson

March Madness

Steve Rivera of AllSportsTucson joins the show to talk about #2 Arizona.

PlayAction Pod | Talking Baylor Hoops With SicEm365
PlayAction Pod | Talking Baylor Hoops With SicEm365

March Madness

Paul Catalina of SicEm365.com joins the show to talk Baylor Bears Hoops. 0:00 Intro 0:33 Catalina talks about Baylor expectations coming into the season...