It was a good day to be a Providence Friar. Undermanned and coming off a tough defeat at the hands of the Kansas St Wildcats the Friars responded. PC was able to fend off a pesky Georgia squad to get a 71-64 victory to salvage a split in the Baha Mar Hoops tournament. With the win the Friars improve to 4-1 on the season and put themselves on solid footing to have a good non-conference resume. Let’s take a look at how they got it done.
Corey Floyd Jr Steps Up- Without starting point guard Jayden Pierre and star freshman guard Garwey Dual (suspension), Corey Floyd Jr’s number was called upon. Earning his first start of the year, he delivered with 11 points. Sometimes high pressure situations create diamonds and hopefully CFJ can build on this solid outing. The three he made was absolutely massive.
Oduro/Carter Pace Friars- Josh Oduro demanded the ball in the paint and delivered. He had 19 points on an efficient 6/8 shooting and added 9 rebounds in the win. When he wasn’t setting up his opponent with successful post moves, he drained a massive 3 and had a huge put-back dunk.
Devin Carter continued to show he’s one of the better two-way players in the entire country. Carter also had 19 points. While he didn’t shoot it particularly well, he had a huge 11 rebounds.
Hopkins Bounce Back- We’ve documented the early season struggles of Bryce Hopkins. and it appeared early that it might carry over into this game. Yet BHop had 8 of his 15 points in the second half and hit some clutch free throws to seal the deal. Bryce needs to develop some sort of counter move, as his typical baseline drive spin move seems to have been scouted and prepped for. At the end of the day, Hopkins is a special player and hopefully he can build off this game.
Developing Depth – These two games will do wonders for speeding up the development of Rich Barron. He hit a massive three. Most important, he didn’t look like a fish out of water out there. He belongs in the rotation of a Big East team and that is a pretty surprising development in his freshman year as an unheralded recruit.
As an aside, Rich’s parents told me this is his first time in an actual strength and conditioning program. He never really lifted weights before. Given his current build, that information shocked me. He’s going to be an absolute bull as an upperclassman.
Friar Fanbase Shows Up Again – It would have been very easy for the Friar fanbase to mail it in given it was a Sunday tip at 12pm in the consolation game. Providence’s fans were as engaged as ever, helping will the team to a victory. After the game, the team and staff made sure to thank the Friar fanbase for the trip. It was an incredible post game scene.
The Friars will take their 4-1 record into a 3-game homestand before hitting the road for a good non-con test against Oklahoma. Given their personnel was hindered they could’ve easily taken a L today. Yet, the Friars responded and ended up with the win. We can leave the Bahamas with confidence in this group going forward.