Archie Miller wasted no time inserting junior forward Kendall Pollard in the game Saturday. He had little choice. The Dayton Flyers trailed Rhode Island 3-0 in the second minute when Pollard entered and had turned the ball over twice in three possessions.
Miller had what he called a funny feeling after Rhode Island’s first shot fell, and it didn’t go away despite the contributions of Pollard, who had missed the four previous games with a bruised femur. The Flyers lost 75-66 at UD Arena and never led.
Pollard had eight points on 2-of-8 shooting with four rebounds in 24 minutes.
“It’s unfair. He played too many minutes,” Miller said. “He hasn’t practiced or played in a game in over three weeks, but he battled. He was physical and aggressive. Early in the game, defensively, he wasn’t as solid as he needed to be, but it’s unfair to ask him to do anything. He wouldn’t have played that many minutes if we could stay out of foul trouble and keep some guys on the floor.”
Pollard’s status moving forward will depend on how his leg recovers after this game, but Miller said, “I think he’s available the rest of the season unless something in the next couple days sets him back.”
Postgame speech: Dayton senior forward Dyshawn Pierre said Miller didn’t yell at the team in the locker room after the loss.
“It was more teaching,” Pierre said, “letting us know we only have a few more games left and when we’re contending for a conference championship, we can’t let games like that slip. Obviously, it’s frustrating.”
Next game: The Flyers play at Richmond at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday. The Flyers have won three of their last four games against Richmond but have lost six straight at the Robins Center since a 55-50 victory on Jan. 14, 2004.
Richmond (14-13, 6-9) took a three-game losing streak into a game at Duquesne on Saturday night. The Spiders are 3-5 at home in A-10 play.
Davis out: Sophomore guard Darrell Davis was not at the game because his uncle died and his mom is sick. Miller said he hopes Davis will be back for Tuesday.
Hall of Fame: UD honored two new members of its Hall of Fame at halftime, Tom Murphy and Jim Stangle. Basketball players Don May, Ken May, Dan Sadlier and Keith Waleskowski were among the Hall of Fame athletes to congratulate the honorees.
• Murphy, a 2007 graduate, was a four-time All-Atlantic 10 selection in tennis. He’s the only UD athlete to earn all-conference honors in all four years of his collegiate career. He had a record of 92-39 in singles and 82-47 in doubles.
• Stangle, a 1970 graduate, was a three-year starter at offensive tackle for the football team. The Alter graduate won the White-Allen MVP award as a senior. His sons, Matt and Ryan, played football at UD in the 1990s.
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