Jan. 23, 2014
Siena began the second half with a decisive 12-2 run and maintained a double digit lead the rest of the way in a convincing 64-47 triumph over Saint Peter's Thursday night in frigid Albany. MAAC Rookie of the Week Marquis Wright finished with 13 points, nine rebounds, three assists and no turnovers for the Saints.
Siena (8-12, 4-5) improved to 6-2 at home this season, edging ahead of the Peacocks (7-11, 3-6) in the early MAAC standings, and equalled their overall and conference win total from last season.
Wright paced a balanced Saints' attack that placed four players in double figures for the sixth time this season (5-1). Brett Bisping and Rob Poole led all players with 14 points and Lavon Long chipped in 10 points and a game-high seven rebounds. No Saint Peter's player reached double figures, but four scored eight points or more.
Siena out-worked Saint Peter's on both ends of the ball as evidenced by a 48-29 rebounding advantage, 17 of which came on the offensive glass.
"I can't explain it," Saint Peter's coach John Dunne said. "We didn't fight hard enough. They just out-toughed us."
Siena led 32-26 after shooting just 39% from the field in the first half, but then made five of their first seven shots in the second half to assume command. Although it was a low scoring game, the Saints executed well offensively, especially in crunch time.
"They just ended up making winning plays as the game went on," Dunne said. "It was a layup drill for them. They're the best screening team in our league for sure. They don't run a lot offensively, but what they do run, they run very well."
Siena also protected the basketball, turning it over just 11 times all night - four coming on four straight possessions after the run at the start of the second half.
Saint Peter's shot just 37% from the field, 2-12 from three-point range and a dismal 5-for-15 from the free throw line.
"They helped us out by missing free throws," Siena coach Jimmy Patsos said. "I expect it will be a different game down there (in Jersey City February 7)."
Siena's tries for its first road win since December 6 Sunday at Fairfield. Tip-off is scheduled for noon.