Vermont (1-2) at Providence (3-0)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Monday, November 18, 7 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Dunkin' Donuts Center (12,400) -- Providence, Rhode Island. Television: FS1. Home Record: Vermont 1-1, Providence 3-0. Away Record: Vermont 0-1, Providence 0-0. Neutral Record: Vermont 0-0, Providence 0-0. Conference Record: Vermont 0-0, Providence 0-0. Series Record: Providence leads, 6-0.
GAME NOTES: The Providence Friars conclude a four-game homestand to start the 2013-14 season on Monday evening, as they play host to the Vermont Catamounts in a non-conference clash at the Dunkin' Donuts Center.
Providence is a perfect 3-0 out of the gate, topping Boston College (82-78 OT), Brown (73-69) and most recently, Marist (93-48). The Friars will leave the friendly confines of the Dunkin' Donuts Center following this game and head to the Virgin Islands to take part in the Paradise Jam starting on Nov. 22.
The Catamounts are in the midst of a seven-game road trip that started with a disappointing 87-64 loss at Bryant on Saturday. With the setback, Vermont is now just 1-2 on the young season. John Becker's squad will not return home until Dec. 15 against Quinnipiac.
Providence has won all six prior meetings with Vermont, with every game being played at home for the Friars.
Vermont is off to a slow start, but is still the preseason favorite to capture the America East Conference crown. Injuries have certainly played a part in the Catamounts' struggles thus far, as they will only have nine healthy players for this game. The team is averaging a modest 68.3 ppg on 42.3 percent shooting, led by Clancy Rugg's 16.3 ppg. Sandro Carissimo is next line with 12.7 ppg. Vermont has struggled on the glass, getting outrebounded by 4.3 caroms per game.
The Catamounts got blown away by Bryant last time out, as the hometown team shot a blistering .558 from the floor to cruise to a 23-point decision. To make matters worse, Vermont was outscored at the free-throw line 22-12. Rugg led the way in scoring for the Catamounts with 13 points. Three others notched double figures in the loss, as Carissimo (12 pts), Luke Apfeld (12 pts) and Naasir Williams (10 pts) made solid contributions.
The Friars will certainly have the upperhand offensively, as a balanced attack is putting up 82.7 ppg thus far. It starts with star guard Bryce Cotton, who is both a prolific scorer (20.7 ppg) and deft distributor (8.0 apg). Forwards LaDontae Henton (17.0 ppg, 9.7 rpg) and Kadeem Batts (16.3 ppg, 8.0 rpg) give Providence a potent one-two punch in the frontcourt, while fellow forward Tyler Harris (12.7 ppg) adds even more to the team's offensive arsenal.
Providence took full advantage of an out-manned Marist squad, shooting 50 percent from the floor and outrebounding the Red Foxes 48-26 in 45-point romp. Cotton was once again magnificent, finishing with 28 points and 11 assists, while committing just one turnover. Batts also posted a double-double with 22 points and 10 rebounds, while Henton (21 points, eight rebounds) just missed one of his own. Harris (13 points, five rebounds) was once again instrumental in providing scoring depth.
The Catamounts are overmatched in this one. Providence will dominate down low again, while Cotton continues to make plays up and down the floor.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Providence 76, Vermont 58
11/18 10:33:45 ET