Providence Tops Men's Basketball in Exhibition, 87-68

Skyhawks open 2019-20 season against District of Columbia, November 9

Twitty scored 19 of his game-high 25 points in the second half of today's exhibition at Providence (PHOTO BY Mike Tureski/SportsPix)

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (October 19, 2019) – Providence College, picked fourth in the Division I BIG EAST preseason poll, held off Stonehill College in the second half to secure an 87-68 victory in a men's basketball preseason exhibition at The Dunkin' Donuts Center this afternoon.

Prior to the game, Stonehill President Fr. John Denning, CSC, Director of Athletics Dean O'Keefe, '94 and head coach Chris Kraus, '06, along with Providence Athletic Director Robert Driscoll recognized Friars head coach Ed Cooley, a 1994 Stonehill graduate, who will be inducted into the Stonehill Athletic Hall of Fame on November 1 in Easton. Cooley, a four-year letterwinner and three-year captain at Stonehill is in his ninth season at the Friars helm.

Moreton added 16 points, seven rebounds and two assists (PHOTO BY Mike Tureski/SportsPix)

Senior Alpha Diallo, first team All-BIG EAST preseason pick, led four Providence players in double-figures with 23 points on 9-of-12 shooting, including 2-for-4 from three-point range, with seven rebounds, four assists, two blocked shots and a steal. Postgrad Emmitt Holt notched a double-double with 17 points and a game-high 13 rebounds, connecting on 7-of-8 shots, including his lone three-point try, with two assists, two blocks and two steals. Sophomore David Duke added 16 points on 7-of-14 shooting, seven boards and six assists, while classmate A.J. Reeves finished with 11 points, four rebounds, two assists and two steals.

Senior Brandon Twitty led the way for Stonehill by scoring 19 of his game-high 25 points in the second half on 9-of-19 shooting, including 3-for-9 from three-point distance, converting all four free-throws to go with four rebounds. Classmate Will Moreton added 16 points, seven rebounds and two assists, while sophomore Andrew Sims rounded out the Skyhawks in double-figures with 13 points on 5-of-9 shooting off the bench, two boards, two assists and two blocks. Junior Monty Urmilevicius, a transfer from Division I Bryant University, pulled down a team-high eight rebounds for the Skyhawks, chipping in six points.

Stonehill trailed by 20 (40-20) after Holt's three-pointer with 3:24 remaining in the first half, but Moreton followed with back-to-back threes, before Sims added a layup to close the gap to 12 (40-28) just a minute later. Twitty followed with a layup to draw the Skyhawks back within ten (40-30) with 1:52 remaining, before the Friars were able to restore a 15-point (46-31) halftime cushion after a layup from junior Andrew Fonts at the buzzer.

Stonehill scored the first eight points of the second half, including six by Twitty to cut the Providence lead to seven (46-39) just two and a half minutes in. Holt snapped the run with a layup, but Twitty buried a three-pointer to close the gap to six (48-42) with 16:35 to play.

(L-R) Stonehill head coach Chris Kraus, '06, Director of Athletics Dean O'Keefe, '94, and President, Fr. John Denning, CSC, presented Providence head coach Ed Cooley, a 1994 Stonehill graduate, with his Hall of Fame plaque ahead of his induction to the Stonehill Athletic Hall of Fame on November 1, with Providence Athletic Director, Robert Driscoll. (PHOTO BY Mike Tureski/SportsPix)

That would be as close as Stonehill would get as Reeves followed with a triple, and Providence scored the next eight to regain a double-digit lead it would not relinquish the rest of the way. Still, the Skyhawks hung in, and were still within 12 (60-48) after a Twitty layup with 12:03 remaining, but the Friars stretched the lead to 19 (70-51) with a Diallo layup with 8:54 to play. Stonehill crept back within 13 four times down the stretch, but Providence was able to hold the Skyhawks at arm's length the rest of the way.

Stonehill officially opens its 2019-20 season when it takes on University of District of Columbia, in game that will be hosted by University of the Sciences in Philadelphia, on Saturday, November 9, at 5 p.m. The Skyhawks home opener is Saturday, November 23, against Saint Michael's College for a Northeast-10 Conference clash at Merkert Gymnasium at 3:30 p.m. Providence hosts Sacred Heart University for its season-opener on Tuesday, November 5, at 7 p.m.

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