Williams lifts Robert Morris to opening win
Robert Morris guard Coron Williams led the Northeast Conference in 3-point percentage last season, knocking down 46.6 percent of his attempts from beyond the arc.
If the sophomore's performance during Friday's 83-57 rout of Rider at Sewall Center to open the season is any indication, it's an honor that the redshirt sophomore from Virginia doesn't plan on relinquishing soon. Williams scored a game-high 28 points to set a career high, making 11 of 20 shots from the field and 5 of 11 3-pointers.
"I feel like I can keep it up every night, too," said Williams, who averaged 7.1 points last year. "I'm not just a shooter, though; I'm a scorer. And that's what my coaches have tried to instill in me."
Robert Morris looked every bit a team that has four starters and 69.5 percent of its scoring back, shooting 46.3 percent from the field and 42.3 percent on 3s. Sophomore Anthony Myers finished with 14 points, freshman Brandon Herman added 11 and Velton Jones had 10 for RMU, which posted a 43-35 rebounding edge and forced 25 turnovers.
Anthony Myles led Rider with 20 points, and Virginia transfer Jeff Jones added 14 on 3-of-11 shooting.
"I didn't imagine that we would play as well as we did, and I didn't imagine the score would be what it was," RMU coach Andrew Toole said.
The matchup reignited a rivalry that dates to the 1990s. From 1992-97, the Broncs played in the NEC -- and regularly torched the Colonials, winning eight of 10 meetings.
Robert Morris, which finished 18-14 and reached the NEC tournament championship game last winter, doesn't play at home again until Dec. 1. In between are four road contests and a neutral-site game against La Salle in Philadelphia.
Robert Morris trailed, 9-8, after the first five minutes before ripping off an 11-0 run to take a 21-9 lead on Jones' long jumper from the right corner.
Much of that early scoring was possible because of defense: The Colonials forced 16 turnovers in the first half. Overall, Rider coughed it up 25 times.
"I thought we had good ball pressure," Toole said. "When we did get beat, we got beat to places where we want to get beat, so we were able to help and rotate and do the things we needed to do."