Men’s basketball: After slow start, Bonnies dominate Fordham

By Chuckie Maggio @chuckiemaggio

ROCHESTER — For the first six minutes, it looked like a Jaylen Adams-less St. Bonaventure men’s basketball team could have trouble offensively against another Atlantic 10 opponent.

After an Antwoine Anderson three-pointer gave the Fordham a 12-6 lead, the Bonnies outscored the Rams by 26 the rest of the way and secured an unusually straight-forward 73-53 victory in front of 6,386 observers at the Blue Cross Arena on Saturday afternoon.

Adams missed the second consecutive game due to an ankle injury, but his teammates stepped up in a big way on both sides of the court. Junior guard Matt Mobley led all scorers with 25 points on 7-of-11 shooting while collecting five rebounds. Senior forward Denzel Gregg wasn’t far behind, with 21 on a 8-of-14 clip from the floor along with nine boards. Freshman Josh Ayeni rounded out the temporary “Big Three,” scoring 12 of his 16 points from the free throw line as well as corralling seven boards.

“Whenever you lose somebody, especially a player like Jay, those other guys have to step up, play even better,” Bonnies coach Mark Schmidt said. “They can’t play an average game; they have to play better. And I thought against Richmond in the second half, our better players just played average. And when you have probably your best player sitting on the bench, you need to have those other guys play better, and today they did.”

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Men’s basketball: Bonnies host Fordham in intriguing Rochester game

By Chuckie Maggio @chuckiemaggio

The St. Bonaventure Bonnies and Fordham Rams are facing off in Saturday afternoon’s game at the Blue Cross Arena in Rochester, but don’t be alarmed if you see a healthy dose of blue, black and white in the stands.

The matchup, nationally televised on NBC Sports Network, is a homecoming of sorts for Fordham’s Antwoine Anderson and Bonaventure’s Chinonso Obokoh. Anderson and Obokoh played high school ball for powerhouse Bishop Kearney, helping lead the Kings to three straight Section V championships and a state championship in 2013 with Indiana star Thomas Bryant.

The former teammates will not be facing off, however, as Obokoh will not play in front of the quasi-hometown crowd (he moved to Rochester from Enugu, Nigeria) due to his lingering knee injury.

Anderson will be an impact player in his first game at the Blue Cross since March 9, 2013, when Kearney defeated Jamestown in the state regionals. The redshirt junior has started all 17 games for the Rams this year and is the fourth teammate averaging double figures, with just under 11 points a game. He was the team’s second-leading scorer and tied for most assists in Wednesday’s upset at Davidson, with 15 points on 6-of-10 shooting and four helpers in the Rams’ first conference victory.

Fordham’s biggest strength, one Anderson plays a major part in, is turning opponents over and getting out in transition, ranking fourth nationally in steals a game with 10.4 and second in turnover margin at plus-6.5.

Sophomore guard Joseph Chartouny is tied for first in the nation in total steals with 57. He recorded five swipes against Davidson, helping the team score eight points off turnovers despite the season average being brought down. Anderson is second on the team with 30 takeaways.

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