Jan. 2, 2014
Monmouth started a tide-turning 17-4 run one minute into the second half and led the rest of the way in a 63-59 MAAC win over Siena Thursday night in West Long Branch, N.J. Rob Poole had a game-high 21 points and nine rebounds in a losing effort for the Saints.
It was the first MAAC win for Monmouth which officially joined the conference over the summer. The Hawks blocked 11 shots and used an aggressive trap to force the Saints into a season-high 23 turnovers.
Siena went on a 19-4 run late in the first half to build a 34-25 lead, and pushed the advantage to 39-29 on a Poole 3-pointer with 19:05 to play.
Monmouth clamped down defensively from there, holding Siena to just 14 points the rest of the way.
The Hawks took the lead for good on Tyrone O'Garro's layup with 12:21 left. Siena fell behind by seven, but closed to within 53-50 on Brett Bisping's layup. The two-teams went scoreless over the next three minutes with Siena missing four chances to pull closer before Monmouth scored the next four points. The Saints got within a possession twice more, the final time on Poole's long three-pointer with 14 seconds left. Max Dileo iced the game with a free throw with 11 seconds left.
Josh James led a balanced Monmouth attack with 11 points off the bench. Evan Hymes had 10 points for Siena, but made just 4-11 field goals and turned the ball over six times. Maurice White scored six of his eight points in the first half.
The Saints will try to get back on track Saturday night when they host Rider at Times Union Center at 7 p.m. It's the first of three straight MAAC home games after three league road contests to start the year.