Nov. 9, 2007
KINGSTON, RI - Carlos Monroe nearly missed in his bid for a double-double, but it wasn't nearly enough in a 90-63 opening night loss for the Florida Atlantic University men's basketball team Friday night against the University of Rhode Island at the Thomas M. Ryan Center.
Monroe finished with 22 points and 9 rebounds, shooting 69.2 percent from the field (9-13 FG) and 4-of-4 at the free throw line. The junior forward validated his selection as a member of the pre-season All-Sun Belt first team with a tremendous 2007-08 debut performance on both ends, helping limit Rhode Island star forward Will Daniels to just seven points on the night.
Paul Graham III elevated his play in the second half, repeatedly taking the ball strong to the basket in a 16-point effort. The junior swingman led the team with two steals and eight free throw attempts, making six, while going 5-for-14 from the floor.
It was a solid first night for Brett Royster as well, with the freshman making his first appearance in an Owls uniform. The Arlington, TX native tallied nine points and five boards in an efficient 18 minutes of action.
Jimmy Baron, regarded as one of the top three-point shooters in the nation to start the season, was brilliant for Rhode Island (1-0) in the victory. The junior son of head coach Jim Baron scored a career-high 30 points on 11-of-18 shooting, including 5-for-10 from three-point range. Keith Cochran added 17 for the Rams, while Joe Mbang netted 12 as well.
A 25-15 turnover margin was the difference for URI, in addition to FAU's struggles from beyond the arc (1-for-11).
Florida Atlantic (0-1) now travels to Massachusetts to face the Boston College Eagles Monday night. Fans can hear all of the action live on WMEN-640 AM, and online at fausports.com, beginning with pre-game coverage at 6:45 p.m.