Iona Offense Fuels Win Over Siena


The offensive power of Iona proved once again to be too much for Siena, as they defeated the Saints, 88-74 at the Hynes Center on Sunday. The Gaels sank 13 three-pointers, 9 in the first half, and used excellent ball movement combining for 21 assists as a team to earn the victory and move into a four-way tie for first place in the MAAC.

The game opened at a frenetic pace and by the 11:46  mark of the first half, the score was tied, 25-25. Both teams shot well in the first twenty minutes. Siena sank 16-30 FG (53.3%), and 2-3 three-pointers (66.7%) while Iona hit 18-35 FG (51.4%) and 9-21  (42.9%) from beyond the arc. The pace slowed down a bit as the half wore down and the Gaels led going into the break, 46-38.

Siena trailed Iona by just 4 points, 59-55 with 10:33 left to go. But, Iona went on a 17-4 run over the next four and a half minutes, to extend the lead to 17, 76-59 with just a little over 6 minutes remaining to provide a comfortable margin the rest of the way.

Siena dominated the boards outrebounding the Gaels, 46 (21 offensive) to 27. While Iona scored 18 points off of the Saints’ 13 turnovers.

“They scored 88, we could have scored with them but turnovers, turnovers, turnovers,” said Siena coach Jimmy Patsos. “The problem is, I’ve got some guys that, they’re young, so they’re learning. This is an emotional gritty league. I think we keep coming out good, but we can’t seem to sustain.”

Evan Hymes led Siena (7-12, 3-5) with a season-high 23 points. It was a nice bounce back game for Lavon Long with his first career double-double, 16 points, and a game-high 11 rebounds. Freshman point guard Marquis Wright turned in  another very solid performance with 12 points, 8 rebounds 8 assists (7 in the first half) and just 3 turnovers.

Tre Bowman led the way for Iona (9-8, 6-2) with a game-high 25 points, 21 in the first half. He shot 9-15 from the field and 5-9 three-pointers. Isaiah Williams scored a career-high 20 points (8-10 FG, 4-5 3-pt.), Sean Armand had 11 points and David Laury had 10.

It was Siena’s third straight loss after dropping their previous two at Manhattan and to Iona in Albany.

“You gotta be careful ‘cause that’s Iona and Manhattan, the two best teams,” Patsos said in terms of not reading too much into the losses. ” Nobody’s freakin’ out. Nobody’s yellin’. We’ve had great practices. They’re young so I’ll figure it out. I think we’re close.”

The Saints return home after this 2-game road trip to face St. Peter’s on Thursday. Tipoff at the Times Union Center is scheduled for 7 p.m.


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