Bronx, New York- On Wednesday evening, the Fordham Rams defeated LaSalle University 60-54 at the Rose Hill Gym. Forward Chuba Ohams had the home crowd rocking with three epic dunks. The Bronx native, Ohams finished the night with 20 points on 7-14 from the field along with 13 boards. His dynamic play on both ends of the floor was unmatched against the Explorers.
Fordham led by head coach Kyle Neptune, are now 13-13 (6-8 in Atlantic-10 Conference play), on the season and setting a mark in his first year as head coach .
Neptune went into detail during the post-game pertaining to his team’s identity on the defensive end. “To our guys’ credit, I think they really embodied that. I think they legitimately go out every game, try to play as hard as they possibly can. We’ve gotten to be really good on the defensive end and it’s our guys. It’s our guys buying into what we asked them to. I’m really proud of these guys.”
Neptune’s coaching style has prepared his squad for the next step in being a serious threat throughout the Atlantic-10 Conference and upcoming tournament in two weeks.
With Wednesday’s loss, LaSalle is now on a five-game losing streak. In the first half, LaSalle totaled 16 points, the lowest scoring half for the Explorers this season. Fordham was firing on all cylinders defensively, forcing the Explorers into eight turnovers in the first half.
LaSalle (7-18) is currently in second to last place within the A-10 Conference standings (2-13 in A-10 Conference play).
A bright spot for the Explorers future is freshman guard, Khalil Brantley who played basketball in familiar territory before his LaSalle days. During his high school years, Brantley attended Our Savior Lutheran School in the Bronx. He contains a crafty layup package and skill set in finding alternate outlet passes to create shot opportunities for teammates. In this matchup, Brantley totaled 12 points and three boards, adding fierce energy off the bench.
Although LaSalle cut their deficit to one in the second half, the Explorers were overpowered by the opposing scrappy defense. Fordham’s Josh Colon-Navarro (Carolina, Puerto Rico) finished the night with 15 points including a trio of three-pointers made.
Rams’ Chuba Ohams passion and competitiveness on the court has shown to translate to other teammates. Neptune went into depth on Ohams influence during the postgame.
“He’s everything for us. He’s averaging a double double. He guards everyone. He can guard a one, a two, a three, a four, a five. He gets rebounds. He scores points. He makes passes. He’s everything for us, on, and off the floor. Off the floor, he’s a great kid. He’s a ball of energy. He’s the mayor of the school pretty much. He knows everyone around campus, so I can’t say enough good things about him”.
Ohams, marked yet another double-double on the season. He ignited his 9- point scoring run in crunch time and has double- doubles in his last 24 games played.
The Rams in their last four games have been without their leading scorer, Darius Quisenberry (17.3 PPG) due to injury. However, key players such as Kyle Rose, Josh Colon-Navarro, Chuba Ohams and sophomore Antrell Charlton have played with the mindset of the next man-up mentality. With just four games remaining until the Atlantic-10 Conference Tournament in Washington D.C., the Rams look to keep their two-game win streak going in hopes of improving their seeding.
Next up for Fordham: on the road at Davidson. Fordham will enter Saturday to face off against in-conference juggernaut: Davidson, who is 23-4 on the season (13-2 in Atlantic-10 Conference play).
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