Game Preview: Siena vs. Marist

men's 2014-15 team picture

Siena returns to the Times Union Center on Friday night to face MAAC rival Marist. Tip off is scheduled for 7 pm. This is the 75th meeting between the two teams with the Saints leading the series 49-25. While Siena has won 13 of the last 16 contests against the Red Foxes, the two teams split the series last season with each team winning at home.

In perhaps their most frustrating moment last season, the Saints held a five point lead in Poughkeepsie with just 12 seconds to go following a pair of made free throws by Lavon Long. Marist drove the length of the floor and Chavaughn Lewis layed it in as seven seconds remained. Jay Bowie then stole the inbounds pass and nailed a corner three-pointer with three seconds left giving Marist the 65-64 Valentine’s Day win.

Siena enters the game with a record of 7-10 overall and 4-4 in the MAAC following a 74-70 win at Niagara on Sunday. Javion Ogunyemi scored a career-high 16 points to earn the Saints a split on their western NY trip following a 34-point loss to Canisius on Friday.

Senior Rob Poole is listed as questionable for Friday’s game and has missed the last two games with a sprained ankle. He is the team’s leading scorer averaging 14.8 points per game (7th in MAAC). Poole has averaged 18 points and shot 44% (11-25) from beyond the three-point arc in his last five games played. He had shot just 33% FG and 26% 3-pt. over the first 10 games. Poole is second in the MAAC in free throw percentage (84.2%). Poole is now 18th on the career scoring list at Siena (1,324) behind Steve McCoy ’89 (1,334) and ranks 9th all time at Siena in three-pointers made (183) behind Kenny Hasbrouck (185).

Sophomore point guard Marquis Wright is second on the team in scoring averaging 12.8 points per game. He is currently second in the MAAC in assists (5.2) and assist-to-turnover ratio (2.1). He had led the league in both categories before this past weekend’s western NY trip where he had just 1 assist and 10 turnovers combined in the two games. Wright is now 15th all-time in assists at Siena with 287 (54 games) behind Antoine Jordan (291, 115 games).

Sophomore Lavon Long is also averaging in double figures for Siena with 11.2 points per game and leads the team in rebounding puling down 5.3 boards per contest. He had 10 points and 6 rebounds in Sunday’s win after missing Friday’s game with a toe injury. He is averaging 13.5 points and shooting 54% from the field in the last five games he played.

Sophomore Javion Ogunyemi continues to develop as a consistent inside presence for the Saints. He is averaging 8.6 points and 4.2 rebounds this season after averaging just  1.9 points and 1.8 rebounds in his freshman season. He ranks third in the MAAC in field goal percentage (54.5%).

Evan Hymes has given the Saints quite the spark at home this season. He is averaging 12.8 points, shooting 53% from the field and 46% from three-point range at the Times Union Center. He has reached double figures in seven of Siena’s last ten games after doing so just once in the first seven games. Hymes now ranks 29th all-time in scoring at Siena with 1,216 career points just behind Kevin McGraw ’82 (1,217). He now stands at 11th all-time in three-pointers made at Siena (171) behind Jeff Robinson (178). He is 12th in assists at Siena (334) behind Prosper Karangwa (343).

5 for 10: Five Siena players have averaged in double figures over the last ten games, Poole (15.5), Wright (12.2), Hymes (11.8), Long (11.3) and Javion Ogunyemi (10.3).

Marist enters the game with a record of 1-17 overall and 0-8 in the MAAC following a narrow 72-71 loss to Quinnipiac on Sunday.

Lewis, a 6-5 senior swingman leads the Red Foxes and is 4th in the MAAC, scoring 19.4 points per game.

Khallid Hart a 6-2 R-sophomore guard and 2013-2014 MAAC Rookie of the Year, is averaging 14.8 points in the 5 games he has played this season, missing the other 13 due to injury.

T.J. Curry, a 6-1 senior guard has also returned for Marist after missing 15 games due to a hand injury. He is averaging 8.0 points and 4.0 rebounds per game.

Phillip Lawrence, a 6-7 junior forward is also averaging in double figures for Marist with 10.0 points per game.

“Marist is not the 1-17 team you see,” said Siena coach Jimmy Patsos. “Khalid Hart’s played (five) games. Phillips is good. Chavaugh Lewis is one of the best two-guards in the league. Here comes Khalid Hart the Rookie of the Year. He’s back (from injury). Of course he comes back for our game. (Looks straight up) For whatever I did I’m sorry.”

“They (Siena players) know how good Hart is,” Patsos continued. “They saw him get the Rookie of the Year last year so I hope they’re ready for the challenge. Marist and Siena has always been a big rivalry and it’s a Friday night game, here we go.”


2014-2015 Marist Results:

N14 at Bucknell L, 75-72

N22 ARMY L, 76-62

N24 vs Florida Gulf Coast L, 58-43

N25 vs. Hawaii L, 62-55

N26 vs. Fresno State W, 68-64

D1 at Boston College L, 79-61

D4 MONMOUTH L, 57-50

D7 at Manhattan L, 60-38

D9 at Penn L, 59-42

D13 at VMI L, 92-77


D28 at Elon L, 69-64

J2 RIDER L, 69-59

J4 at Saint Peter’s L, 79-67

J8 CANISIUS L, 67-52

J11 at Quinnipiac L, 66-54

J16 at Fairfield  L, 60-54



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