Fordham Men’s Basketball Takes Down Tulane 95-90

The Rams’ offense powers them to a seven-game win streak, their longest since the 1990-91 season



Khalid Moore, GSAS ’23, lays the ball up through contact. Moore scored 23 points and brought down 10 rebounds.


With a 7-1 record, the Fordham Rams headed to New Orleans on Dec. 3 to face the Tulane University (TU) Green Wave, a team with a perfect home record, in what would prove to be a both mental and physical battle. The Rams eventually triumphed, 95-90.

Fordham has been the surprise of the Atlantic 10 (A10) this season. Under Head Coach Keith Urgo’s stewardship, the team has climbed to a level that few saw coming. The veteran leadership of Darius Quisenberry, Graduate School of Arts and Sciences (GSAS) ’23, has also seen a rise with the graduate guard averaging 17.0 points per game along with 3.4 assists and 3.6 rebounds. 

Tulane’s stars Kevin Cross, TU ’24, and Jaylen Forbes, TU ’24, prepared to stop Quisenberry’s elite play. The Rams’ first possession of the game started with a missed shot that was then recovered and put back by Khalid Moore, Graduate School of Arts and Science (GSAS) ’23. Fordham’s big man, Abdou Tsimbila, Fordham College at Rose Hill (FCRH) ’24, followed Moore’s effort with a powerful post move to lay the ball in. Tulane failed to get going early in the game as they missed their first three attempts.

Kyle Rose, FCRH ’24, described as Fordham’s “heart and soul” by Urgo, began his contribution to the game with 18:12 left in the first half; when he sank a 3-point bucket so pure it barely touched the net. Rose is vital to the Fordham roster on both ends of the floor. His 3-point shot is elite, but his defensive ability is his main attribute. Rose getting on the board early was key for the rest of the game.

The Rams went on a six-minute scoring drought which gave Tulane the reins to control the game. Tulane took advantage and went on an 11-0 run, ended by a skillful bucket from Rose.

Tulane started slow but not for a lack of effort. The Green Wave got on the board with a nice jumper in the paint from Cross. The Tulane forward put in a lot of work this game, ending with a total of 25 points. 

The next play, Charlton stole the ball and fired a pass into the paint. The double team came over to accommodate for the mismatch, and the extra pass was made to Moore at the 3-point line. Although the attempt was missed, Urgo’s influence is clearly having an effect on the team. His intensity is not confined to the sidelines.

With nearly 15 minutes left in the first period, Cross drove with ferocity to the rim and converted the basket. The forward then came down the floor again, this time looking to put on a highlight dunk that was fouled by Rostyslav Novitskyi, FCRH ’23. Cross — shooting 85% from the charity stripe — easily converted his shots, leaving the score at 13-11.

Tulane started to ramp up their physicality. With 13:33 left in the first half, Tylan Pope, TU ’25, snatched an offensive rebound and wrestled the ball to the ground along with three Rams players. With 12:43, Tulane played a good and strong defense on Tsimbila, who threw up a poor shot that clunked off the backboard. Tsimbila is a dominant defensive player for Urgo’s team but is not as gifted on the offensive end. 

Moore capped off the sequence with another bucket. The Rams went on a 9-0 run in 72 seconds.

Jalen Cook, TU ’25, was then fouled by Quisenberry on a three point attempt. Quisenberry, seemingly unhappy with the decision, complained to the refs while Tulane tacked on three more points at the line. After another successful possession culminating in Collin Holloway, TU ’24, scoring in the paint the team from New Orleans was now winning 18-13.

The Rams went on a six-minute scoring drought which gave Tulane the reins to control the game. Tulane took advantage and went on an 11-0 run, ended by a skillful bucket from Rose. From here the game turned into a back and forth. The first half ended with the home team up, 45-37. Tulane was defending a perfect home record, and it seemed that the Green Wave was on course to be 5-0 at home. However, the Rams didn’t let up.

The key to success for the Rams entering the second half was threefold. Fordham could not let Tulane go on another big run; they had to use their size to get the rebound advantage; and they had to stick to their defensive game plan.

On the first possession by Fordham, Moore took it strong to his spot in the mid-range and swished a jumper. Cross returned with a soft jump hook that put the lead back to 8. Quisenberry, who ended the first with 15 points, hit a three to put his tally to 18. 

Kyle Rose
Kyle Rose, FCRH ’24, climbs over a defender to score. Rose has been described as Fordham’s “heart and soul” by Head Coach Keith Urgo. (COURTESY OF CRAIG BOUDREAUX)

In the next play, Forbes, who led Tulane to their previous win, turned the ball over, setting a negative tone for his squad’s second-half effort. Tsimbila intelligently drew the foul. Fordham’s score then sat at 44, to Tulane’s 47. 

The Rams showed chemistry and collective effort, as on the next play Quisenberry came down the floor and threw a pin-perfect pass to Charlton, who darted a ball to Tsimbila under the basket, ending in a powerful dunk. Moore capped off the sequence with another bucket. The Rams went on a 9-0 run in 72 seconds. 

The bench rotation played an integral role in Fordham’s success. Novitskyi, the Ukrainian center, was snatching rebounds and diving on the floor to retain possession. His play off the bench earned him nine rebounds and 14 points. 

With only 5:21 left in the game, Moore ignited. He stepped through and put the Rams up 75-68. Novitskyi then drew a foul to convert one of two and followed that up with a contested layup. However, this skillful stint was overshadowed by an unstoppable posterizer that James delivered on the Ukrainian forward.

The Rams now led by only two points. Tulane had flipped a switch and hit five of their last six attempts.

The game’s intensity rose yet again after that. Tulane came down the floor and drew a foul that left Charlton on the floor. As the whistle blew, Cook went for a layup that Rose emphatically blocked. Although it didn’t count, Rose’s powerful play made a statement of its own. The two had to be separated, and Cook could be seen saying what appeared to be “you suck” to Fordham’s lethal guard.

Novitskyi wasn’t disheartened by the detonation James delivered upon him and provided a putback dunk of his own to put the Rams up 82-72 with 3:40 left in the game.

With around two minutes left, Will Richardson, FCRH ’26, was able to come up huge with a defensive play, but Rose was unable to convert the following possession. Tulane came back down the floor, and Cook hit a crowd-pleasing three to bring the Fordham lead down to four. Quisenberry sped right back down the court and drew a hard foul. He fell down but got right back up and went one-for-two at the line. 

Cross danced through the defense and put up a floater that swished through the net. He turned after the score and taunted the Rams with a clap of the hands. Cross’ team was only down 85-82 with 1:55 left. On the next play, Moore found Quisenberry, who finished in traffic to give himself 23 points. On the other end, Cook drew a foul on a long-range attempt and went to the line converting three-for-three. 

The Rams now led by only two points. Tulane had flipped a switch and hit five of their last six attempts. Moore responded and drove on Forbes, converting the jump hook. Quisenberry followed, putting his body on the line and drew a charge to regain possession. 

Rose turned the ball over on his next drive with less than a minute left. Down by four with 35.2 seconds left in the game, Tulane recovered possession. Cook patiently dribbled the ball up and shot a three, but Rose redeemed himself by soaring in for the block. 

Following a foul, Tsimbila went to the line with the opportunity to make it a two-possession game. The Rams defense fell following Tsimbila’s successful free-throw attempts, allowing Cross to drive, dunk and draw a foul with 17.7 seconds left in the game. Cross converted the 3-point play and brought the game back to one possession. 

As teams in desperation often do, Tulane intentionally fouled, transitioning the game into one decided at the free-throw line. Richardson found himself at the charity stripe with 7.4 seconds left and the Rams up by two. He had an opportunity to kill the game. 

Showing composure, Richardson converted both. The game was done but not over. Moore was inexplicably fouled at the final buzzer. He strolled to the free throw line and buried one final shot. Although the intensity escalated from start to finish, the Green Wave resigned as the final whistle blew and the Rams triumphed, 95-90. 

The game featured multiple storylines. Quisenberry battled through an injury; Novitskyi played well despite being on the wrong end of a dunk; and Richardson proved his clutch gene at the late-game free throw line. It was not a clean victory by any means for Urgo’s team, yet they deployed the coach’s passion and competitive fervor. The value of the performance was proven in the stat sheet, with the Rams dominating the boards on the offensive end 15-9. Tulane was also formidable, a program on the rise that has struggled to achieve winning seasons in its own competitive conference.

The game had all a college basketball fan could ask for: highlight dunks, scrappy defensive plays and clutch baskets. 

On Dec. 6, Fordham took on Wagner College in a close and contested matchup. The Rams pulled away in the final minutes to secure a 72-59 victory. This extends their historic win streak to eight, their longest since joining the A10 for the 1995-96 season.