It came down to the final minutes. In the end Siena sealed the deal with a 76-70 victory over St. Bonaventure at MVP Arena in Albany. The win gave the Saints the Brother Ed Coughlin Franciscan Cup and improved their record to 6-5. Bona dropped their third straight and is now 6-6. Numbers and notes…
Possessions: 60 – Another grind it out affair. Less possessions however means less of a margin of error.
Offensive Efficiency: Siena 127, St. Bona 117. Bona had a good showing on the offensive end. The defensive side was lacking. Again, give up a 127 efficiency and you have almost no chance of winning.
Rebounding and turnovers did not provide much difference. Siena had a significant difference getting to the line. The field goal numbers though tell a good deal of the story. Bona was 55% from two and 42% from three point range. Good solid numbers. Unfortunately Mark Schmidt’s group allowed Siena to hit 50% from two and beyond the arc. Saints buried 9 of 18 from three with Javian McCollum, a game high 23 point scorer, hitting 3 of 5. Bona had been strong in limiting opponents from beyond the arc. On this night that perimeter defense was far below par. The efficiency numbers and final score bear this out.
The start. Kyrell Luc opened the scoring with a jumper. The Saints then reeled off ten straight and had a 10-2 lead heading into the initial media timeout. Schmidt always preaches the value of getting a good start. Unfortunately for Bona, the first four plus minutes had them on their heels for almost the entire night.
Kenpom.com MVP: Jackson Stormo, Siena. The 6’9” Stormo was a stat stuffer. He scored 14 points, pulled down a game high seven rebounds, had three assists and three blocked shots.
Bona was led by Moses Flowers with 14 points. Yann Farell found his scoring touch adding 13 (3 of 4 from three) and Chad Venning 12. Daryl Banks scored 11 points yet struggled going 1 of 7 from downtown. Anquan Hill led Bona with four rebounds. In raw numbers Siena held a slight 26-24 rebounding edge. The way both teams shot the ball there were not as many rebounding opportunities.
Finishing. Just under two minutes left the Bonnies Flowers long jumper gave the Bonnies the lead. It was soon gone as Siena went on a run over those final minutes to secure the victory. Finishing the game is a priority for Bona. There is a maturation process that plays a big part in learning to finish. With a revamped roster of young players that maturation process does not happen overnight. Several times this season Bona came out on the short end by not finishing.
“I thought we played hard but couldn’t close,” Schmidt told Tap Into Olean. “We have to learn to finish and make those plays in times when you have to make plays,” the coach admitted. That learning process can sometimes be painful.
Bona’s loss to Carmen Maciariello’s Saints put the Bonnies at 0-3 against MAAC teams. Bona had previously dropped games at Canisius (in OT) and Iona. On the flip side the Bonnies are 1-0 against the ACC with their win over Notre Dame.
The Franciscan Cup now stands at 7-5 in Bona’s favor. The schools have alternated wins since 2018.
Next up for Bona is a trip to face Northern Iowa. The game slated for Thursday has been moved to Wednesday due to a winter storm headed to the midwest.