Friar Basketball

Bullock, Jackson Key PC Win

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The good news for Providence? Ed Cooley’s Friars opened Friday night’s 89-75 victory over Sacred Heart with the sense of urgency that had been lacking in recent weeks.

PC raced out to a 19-2 advantage seven minutes into this one behind red hot shooting from deep. Providence’s first three baskets all came from behind the arc, with each coming from a different player — Rodney Bullock, Isaiah Jackson, and Jalen Lindsey.

The Friars remained hot from 3-point range throughout the opening half, making 7-15 from long range with four different players contributing a deep ball. PC held a 49-32 lead at the break with solid shooting across the board. Rodney Bullock scored 16 of his season high 31 points in the first half, Drew Edwards went 3-4 from the field, Kalif Young 3-3, and Jalen Lindsey knocked down 3-5 from 3.

In Wednesday’s loss to Houston Providence battled back from 21 down and made several stops over the final ten minutes to give themselves a chance at a late run, but they simply struggled to score. That wasn’t the case on this night.

While Bullock’s 31 will make headlines, it was Jackson who provided a needed lift. The junior forward filled the stat sheet with 17 points, six rebounds, and six assists in 37 minutes. Perhaps equally as significant, Jackson and Edwards played with grit, hitting the deck for loose balls and combining for 11 boards.

Jackson’s second season in Black and White¬†has been a bit of a rollercoaster. After scoring 21 points in the team’s first two games of the season (shooting 5-6 from 3 in the process), he scored just four points in the team’s next six games.

A strong effort against UMass two weeks ago (nine points in 14 minutes) kicked off bounce back stretch that has seen him score 9, 13, 10, and 17 points in his last four games.

Providence was with Kyron Cartwright, Maliek White, and Alpha Diallo, so the emergence of Jackson has taken added significance with league play six days away.

Nate Watson provided a lift early in the second half with eight quick points out of the intermission and Kalif Young finished with 10 points and six boards.

The Friars looked to lose defensive focus in the second half, giving up 43 points over the final 20 minutes. Cooley won’t be happy with the 46 points the Pioneers scored in the paint (vs. PC’s 30).

Still, for a team that has struggled in December — both on the floor and with injuries — the Christmas break has come at an good time for the Friars.

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