Men’s basketball: Bona’s run ends against Saint Joe’s

By Joe Pinter, @JPinter93

BROOKLYN, N.Y. (March 15) — If someone would have told Mark Schmidt back in October that his St. Bonaventure Bonnies would win 18 games and make it to the Atlantic 10 semifinals, he wouldn’t have been sure how to respond.

“I would have looked at them a little bit sideways,” the coach said.

Turns out it wasn’t such a far-fetched thought.

The Bonnies’ unexpected run to the A-10 semifinals came to an abrupt end today as their lack of depth was exposed against a deeper, more rested St. Joe’s team. The Bonnies fell 67-48.

Continue reading “Men’s basketball: Bona’s run ends against Saint Joe’s”

Men’s basketball: Ndoye leads the way

By Joe Pinter, @JPinter93

BROOKLYN, N.Y. (March 13) — With 13:15 remaining on the clock, Youssou Ndoye walked to the bench after receiving his third and fourth fouls.

With the St. Bonaventure Bonnies’ lead reduced to 53-52, coach Mark Schmidt knew he had to sit Ndoye, regardless of how well he had been playing.

“Youssou didn’t do something that we wanted him to do,” Schmidt said. “He was playing really, really well. You could see it in the kid’s eyes like, ‘Here we go again.’ He made a mistake, but good teammates pick him up. That’s what our guys did.”

“I thought Youssou was tremendous in the first half,” he added. “In the second half, the third foul and the technical foul and La Salle made a run at us… It was 53-52 and we had a timeout and we talked about it and our guys responded.”

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Men’s basketball: #Bonnies’ Simmons ready to lead team

By Jeff Fasoldt, @Jeff_Fasoldt

One of the biggest questions for this year’s St. Bonaventure men’s basketball team is: who will be the leader?

Marquise Simmons is eager to take charge.

The 6’8’’ forward from Washington D.C. is playing in his final year of eligibility, and he understands the role he must take on.

“I’ve got to be a leader,” said Simmons. “I’m a senior and I got to be a guy that the younger players look up to.”

Last season Simmons started in 11 games, and played in all 29. He averaged 6.2 points and averaged 4.9 rebounds a game. This year he looks to continue being a leading rebounder on the team and increase his point per game total.

“I will do anything I can to help the team win,” said Simmons. “I want to obviously improve my rebounding and point production.”

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Behind the Wolfpack: Healthy Simmons and Davenport Ready For Season

[Photo courtesy of]

By Ryan Lazo, Co-editor in chief/feature columnist, @RMLazo13

ST. BONAVENTURE, N.Y. (Oct. 17) – Marquise Simmons took a pass at the top of the key and quickly drove hard to the basket and immediately started to limp and grimace after being fouled.

Simmons waved off trainers and took his free throws, made them both, and called to the bench knowing that his season may have ended after just two minutes of game action.

“I don’t remember much of it, but I remember taking off to the basket and feeling a snap,” Simmons recalled. “I was in more of a denial stage, knew something was wrong, but didn’t know what. I saw the trainer and he told me I tore my achilles.”

But the injury bug didn’t stop there. In just St. Bonaventure’s eighth game, Michael Davenport went after a loose ball, banged his shoulder and immediately grabbed for it in pain, but thought it wasn’t anything serious.

“I thought it was just a slight dislocation,” Davenport said on the court before practice. “Then when they took me to the back and it was obviously a lot worse than that.”

And just like that, the Bonnies lost two major contributors to their team and many pegged the season as a lost cause. However, other players stepped up their own play in order to replace the production of both Simmons and Davenport.

But their injuries have allowed them to return for one more go around with St. Bonaventure. Davenport is just 253 points away from 1,000 in his career and Simmons is finally healthy heading into the season.

Bonnies coach Mark Schmidt said it’s a huge boost to the team.

“When you can have those guys back who have had experience, it really is helpful, not only to me but also the young guys,” Schmidt said of his seniors.

How important can Simmons be to St. Bonaventure’s success?

Well, first off he is one of only two traditional big men on the roster, meaning he will play a lot of minutes. But secondly, Simmons was actually considered the crown jewel of his own recruiting class.

Yes, that’s right.

It was Simmons who was the highly regarded prospect and not the string bean from Mississauga, Ontario. Simmons had all the makings of a future star: great build, good ball handling skills, great finisher around the basket and had touch from the perimeter.

But injuries have hurt his chances to put his skills on display.

“It’s been more of a set back type of thing,” Simmons said. “But I’m healthy this year and I’m ready to go.”

Meanwhile, Davenport is one of a seven-guard deep roster and has the most experience of all of them. Davenport has experienced the ups and downs of the college game and Schmidt said he can have redemption this season.

“He wasn’t having a great senior season anyway, put too much pressure on himself, so it’s almost like he has a reprieve,” Schmidt said. “We’re expecting him to score the ball. He has a chance to be a 1,000-point scorer and you don’t have many of those in your career.”

While the rest of the Atlantic 10 Conference believes St. Bonaventure was a one-man show last season, the Bonnies have a deep squad that only gets better with the return of Simmons and Davenport.

St. Bonaventure may not have the star power that Andrew Nicholson brought them last season, but with Simmons’ ability to stretch the floor with his jump-shot and Davenport’s ability to create off the dribble, the Bonnies have two senior leaders who could point them in the right direction.

Runs cleared to practice with basketball team

[Photo courtesy of]

By Ryan Lazo, Co-editor in chief/feature columnist, @RMLazo13

St. Bonaventure University’s Athletic Department released a statement this afternoon regarding redshirt freshman Matthias Runs’s status. 

Runs, a 6-foot-11-inch center from The Netherlands, was cleared to practice but is not eligible to play this season as deemed by the NCAA. 

In a press release, head coach Mark Schmidt said he is happy that a decision has been made.

“I am glad a resolution has been reached regarding Matthias’ eligibility,” Schmidt said. “We are excited about Matthias’ potential as a player. A year of practicing and working with our team will provide him an opportunity to grow in our program, as well as continue his development as a player. We look forward to next season when he can play in games.”

With the decision being made, the Bonnies will have just two front court players this season in Marquise Simmons and Youssou Ndoye. However, depth will not be an issue in the front court.

Runs is part of a three-player recruiting class following the program’s first Atlantic 10 Conference Championship last season. He will have just three years of eligibility starting next season. 

The Intrepid will continue to follow the situation and post new information when it becomes available.

Behind the Wolfpack: Bench is key to the Bonnies’ success

By Ryan Lazo, feature columnist, @RMLazo13

St. Bonaventure’s bench could have been mistaken for a barren wasteland last season. 

But if the Bonnies’ 87-61 exhibition win over Mansfield is any indication, they have solved their issues.

Coach Mark Schmidt talked extensively about having no depth on last year’s squad, resulting in three players being among the tops in the nation in minutes played. He added on any individual day, any player knew they could start. 

Sure, the Bonnies return four of five starters from last season —- though losing captain Ogo Adegboye -— but there is no guarantee they will all be on the court come the Nov. 11 tipoff against Cornell.

If the Bonnies bench was a wasteland last season, its bench may be the team’s Garden of Eden this season. 

The Bonnies bench scored 42 points Friday. The Bonnies bench scored 54 points in last season’s last four games combined. 

With no other reliable point guard option last season, Schmidt leaned heavily on Adegboye, the nation’s leader in minutes played. But newcomers Eric Mosley and Charlon Kloof combined for 22 points, five assists and seven rebounds, making them a two-headed monster that can take over games. 

However, their seven turnovers can lose games, too.

But it’s not just the newcomers that produced. 

Matthew Wright came off the bench and exploded for 11 points, despite missing four free throws, in only 17 minutes of action.

The sophomore is known for his silky smooth stroke and, like an artist painting a masterpiece, displayed it to the Bona faithful by hitting 2-of-4 3-pointers, one of which a fade away off of one leg which capped a 24-to-6 run to start the game.

In the power forward competition, neither junior Marquise Simmons nor senior Da’Quan Cook stood out from one another, totaling the same number of rebounds and making a similar impact on the game.

However, it’s never a bad problem to have for a coach when you have two forwards battling for playing time when others have a lack of bigs.

Having this kind of depth will help keep players rested down the stretch, something that seemed to bother last year’s team as they faded to the finish, losing four out their last five contests.

Schmidt turning toward his bench was a rarity last season, but that should change this year.

Now when Schmidt turns toward his bench, he won’t be looking at a graveyard, but at a wealth of talent that could determine the Bonnies success this season.

Recap of Bonnies scrimmages on media day

A staff writer shares his thoughts regarding three 12-minute scrimmages at men’s basketball’s on-campus media day 

By Joseph Pinter, staff writer, @JPinter93

The men’s basketball team may still be a few days away from its exhibition opener against Mansfield, but the team is at work preparing for the upcoming season. 

On October 22, the Bonnies held an intrasquad scrimmage for select members of the media and others. The players were split into the white and brown team. 

Forwards Marquisse Simmons and Da’Quan Cook played the first of three 12-minute scrimmages as if they were in a heated position battle. Both came out flying as Simmons scored the game’s first points, but Cook scored 10 within the first scrimmage’s first four minutes. Simmons ended the first game with six points. 

Freshmen Jordan Gathers and Youssou Ndoye made significant contributions, too. Assistant coach Dave Moore spoke highly of Ndoye, even comparing him to a young, raw Andrew Nicholson. 

“Youssou’s a little more raw than Andrew was when he came here,” Moore said. “Andrew’s a better athlete, but Youssou is bigger and broader, more of a traditional five man. They are both very fun to work with.”

In the third scrimmage, Gathers started a key turnaround for the white team, draining a three and then making a key steal later that led to a breakaway dunk. 

Sophomore shooting guard Matt Wright showed off his range often. He nailed a 3-pointer and then a jumper from inside the arc in the first scrimmage. 

However, sophomore Charlon Kloof’s ball handling skills broke the defense and drove to the basket to score with ease to give his team a victory. 

In the second game, Cook and Nicholson stole the spotlight with 11 and 8 points, respectively. Nicholson showed his newfound range by making a fade away three to open the game.

In the final 12 minute scrimmage, junior Demetrius Conger was the star. He scored 12 of his team’s 20 points that included a one-handed dunk in traffic and a fade-away three. 

Despite a great scrimmage, coach Mark Schmidt was blunt and honest after the scrimmage when asked about his team’s chances to make the NCAA tournament.

“Five years ago if I were to say we would have a chance to go to the tournament, everyone would think I was nuts,” he said. “We just try to get better each year and take the next step.”

The Bonnies’ 16-15 finish last season was its first winning record since 2001-2002 when the team finished 17-13 under coach Jan van Breda Kolff. With the four returning starters, Schmidt said the Bonnies will try to improve on their record from last year.