ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. -- Some final thoughts as No. 5 Rhode Island beat No. 4 Saint Louis in quarterfinal play in the A-10 tourney here at Boardwalk Hall. Up next for the Rams (23-8) is a semifinal matchup on Saturday at 1 p.m. ET against top seed Temple (27-5).
URI was led by forward Lamonte Ulmer who finished with 16 points (6 of 9 FG) and 5 rebounds after only having 4 points and 1 rebound in the first 20 minutes. The Rams also had two other players in double figures as Akeem Richmond, who was a first-half spark, had 13 points and Orion Outerbridge had 10 points to go along with 5 rebounds.
The Rams were dominant on the glass, owning a 38-26 advantage. More impressive was the 17 offensive rebounds by URI, which almost equaled SLU’s 19 defensive boards.
Once Rhode Island got out to a double-digit lead it was too much for Saint Louis to recover from. The Billikens were challenged on the offensive end all afternoon. Kwamain Mitchell led SLU with 18 points on 7-of-11 shooting. The rest of the team was 12-of-32 from the floor.
Jim Baron’s club can play with Temple. Yes, the Rams went 0-2 against the Owls this season but one of the games was a four-point loss in overtime. And URI has some similarities to Temple in that it is long and has some versatility in how it chooses to play.
Saint Louis finishes the regular season at 20-11. And Rick Majerus’ team of 11 underclassmen head back to Missouri and wait to find out if their season continues in the NIT. If it does expect the Billikens to spend time in practice working on protecting the basketball. SLU finished with more turnovers (13) than assists (10). Ouch.