Nov. 18, 2006
Providence, Rhode Island - Brown pulled off a stunning 51-41 upset over Providence College Saturday evening at the Dunkin Donuts Center, dictating the pace of play throughout and dominating the Friars down the stretch. The win was also the first career win for Bears first year head coach Craig Robinson, mentoring Brown to its first win over the Big East Friars since 2001.
"This is a tremendous victory for our team," said Robinson. "Hopefully there will be more to come as our players adjust to our style of play. This game means a lot to the City of Providence and a lot to Brown University. Our kids and the PC kids play together in the off season, and now we have city bragging rights for a while."
Brown held the Friars to just 14 second half points with tenacious switching defense, holding Providence to just 4 of 22 shooting (18 percent) in the decisive second half.
Trailing 37-34 with 7:00 left to play, Brown broke the game open with an 11-0 run to grab a 45-37 lead on two free throws by senior center Nate Eads with 1:11 remaining in the contest. In the 11-0 spurt, sophomore Scott Friske's three-point basket tied it, 37-37, and junior Keenan Jeppesen's layup with 5:25 remaining gave Brown the lead for good, 39-37. Along the way, senior Marcus Becker converted a free throw and freshman Matt Mullery scored three points.
Eads came up big for the Bears, starting in place of injured junior Mark MacDonald. Eads scored a career high 16 points on 5 of 7 shooting from the field and 6 of 6 shooting from the charity stripe.
Perhaps the most tired player on the court was Brown's Jeppesen, who scored 13 points while playing all 40 minutes. Junior co-captain Mark McAndrew also scored in double figures with 11 points on 3 of 4 shooting from the field in 38 minutes of play.
The opening minutes of the game were evenly played with both teams feeling each other out. The Bears held an early 12-10 lead following a layup by Eads with 10:21 left in the half.
McAndrew connected on two free throws with 8:06 left in the half to put the Bears up 14-12. Following a Friars free throw, Eads scored on a layup to give the Bears a 16-13 lead with 6:56 left in the half.
Providence outscored the Bears 8-0 over the next four minutes to grab a 21-16 lead with 3:06 remaining, and extended its lead at the half to 27-19.
The second half continued to be played at the Bears pace with strong defense and patience on offense. Brown chipped away at the Friars lead and grabbed a 34-32 lead on two free throws by Nate Eads with 8:30 left in the game.
The Friars were led by Sharud Curry, who scored 14 points, while Herbert Hill added 10 points.
The Bears will be back in action with its fifth straight game on the road, traveling to Evanston, Illinois to battle Northwestern on Tuesday, November 21. It's a homecoming of sorts for Bears' head coach Craig Robinson, a Chicago native, who was an assistant coach at Northwestern for the last six years.