Preview: Bonnies take on Gators in NCAA Tournament

By Jeff Uveino

It’s one of the most anticipated days of the year for college hoops fans—the first Thursday of the NCAA tournament.

With 16 games scheduled for today, the eyes of the sporting world will once again be on college basketball. However, for fans of the St. Bonaventure Bonnies; only one game really matters.

The No. 11 Bonnies (25-7) will take on the No. 6 Florida Gators (20-12) at 9:55 p.m. in the first round of the NCAA tournament on truTV.

The Bonnies are coming off a 65-58 win over the UCLA Bruins in the ‘First Four’ round in Dayton, Ohio. Now, the Bonnies get to travel to Dallas, Texas to take on a Gators team that went 11-7 in Southeastern Conference (SEC) play. Despite winning their final three regular season games, the Gators were eliminated in the quarterfinals of the SEC tournament by the Arkansas Razorbacks. Florida owns several wins over other tournament teams this season, including Gonzaga, Auburn, and two wins against Kentucky

The Gators have enjoyed recent tournament success, including trips to at least the Elite Eight in five straight seasons. In the 2017 NCAA tournament, Florida lost a heart breaker to the South Carolina Gamecocks, denying them a trip to the Final Four.

The Gators have scorers up and down their roster, averaging 76 points per game. They are led by junior guard Jalen Hudson, who averages 15.3 points per game. Egor Koulechov, a senior guard from Russia, averages 13.6 points per game. Other key contributors are guards KeVaugh Allen and Chris Chiozza, who average 13.6 and 13.5 points, respectively. Chiozza also averages 6.1 assists and 4.4 rebounds per game, making him a central part of the Gators offense.

While the sunshine of Gainesville, Florida is far from the snow covered tundras of Allegany, New York; the Bonnies and Gators aren’t strangers.

Just last year, the Bonnies and Gators met at Florida in a close and competitive game resulting in a 73-66 loss.

Senior Idris Taqqee remembers the game against the Gators last year. Now, with a better team and a chance to see them on a neutral court, Taqqee said the Bonnies are ready for another shot against them.

“It’s already a rematch so we want to get that revenge,” Taqqee said. ” We want this. We’re hungry.”

Part of the path to getting that revenge is showing up defensively. The Bonnies used a stymieing zone defensive scheme to slow down the Bruins last game as they try for similar results against the Gators.  The Bonnies forced 20 UCLA turnovers, including 10 by their star guard Aaron Holiday.

Another key to the Bonnies’ First Four win was the play of Courtney Stockard, who scored 26 points. Stockard, a junior forward, is the X-factor in a Bonnies attack that features two high-scoring senior guards; Jaylen Adams and Matt Mobley.

Adams averages 19.4 points and 5.3 assists per game, and Mobley averages 18.4 points and 5 rebounds per game. The Bonnies shoot nearly 40% from three point range, and their shooting will be a key as to whether they will be able to pull off an upset.
The winner of this game will play either Texas Tech or Stephen F. Austin on Saturday with a trip to the ‘Sweet 16’ at stake.

Junior LaDarien Griffin, a native of Jacksonville, Florida, knows the Gators pretty well. He grew up watching them and even played AAU with Florida forward Kevarrius Hayes.

He couldn’t hold back his excitement when asked about getting a second chance to beat the Gators.

“I used to watch those great teams that they had in awe.” Griffin said. “You grow up and it’s always the goal to beat those type of teams and now we get that chance. I can’t wait man, I can’t wait to play them!”


Bonnies Split Season Series With St. Joe’s In 70-67 Win

By: Nicholas Gallo

The St. Bonaventure Bonnies would get their revenge against the St. Joes Hawks in a 70-67 nail-biting win at the Reilly Center.

Jaylen Adams would convert a go-ahead basket with 18.5 seconds left to give the Bonnies their eighth straight win at home.

The Hawks would hold onto a six-point lead with four minutes to go in the first half. A three by Adams and a battle-tested Bonnies would tie the game up at 33 walking into halftime.

Entering the second half, the Bonnies came out scoring. They would score 11 unanswered points and have a 12-point lead with 13:48 to go in the game.

“In these type of physical games, you just got to go and play,” said Martelli. “We didn’t do that in the beginning of the second half being down 12.”

The Hawks wouldn’t quit as they kept coming after the Bonnies scoring eight unanswered points. After a made free throw by James Demery, the Hawks took a three-point lead with 7:51 left to play. Junior guard, Nelson Kaputo would make a huge three-point shot to tie the game up at 59 with 7:18 left in the game.

Both teams would go back and forth as the game would have 15 ties and 18 lead changes.

With 1:46 seconds left, down by two, Bonas would call a timeout to draw up a play to get a game-tying basket.

After multiple screens, a pass from Courtney Stockard to Ladarien Griffin for a dunk would tie the game up at 67 with a 1:24 to go.

After a St. Joes timeout, the team would go to James Demery who would miss a three-point shot.

With 37 seconds left, Piefrancesco would turn the ball over and St. Bonaventure would take advantage by calling a timeout.

“On the last play out of bounds, we wanted to run a fake handoff and a double away,” said Martelli. “There has to be some composure in these types of moments you can’t just be dribbling the ball all over the place.

Adams scored the go-ahead bucket to put Bonas up 69-67 with 14 seconds left to play.

“We were desperate for a win,” said Bonnies Head Coach Mark Schmidt. “We just found a way, but particularly our defense was much better then it had been on the road the last four games.”

Before tonight’s game, the Bonnies gave up an average of 84.25 points per game in their four-game road stretch. Forcing a Hawks team to shoot 39% from the field and causing 11 turnovers was vital in assisting the Bonnies effort on offense.

In addition to their defense, the Bonnies would have four players in double figures for points. Courtney Stockard and LaDarien Griffin would have stat-stuffing games by both recording double-doubles. Griffin would score ten points and grab 11 rebounds while Stockard would tally 15 points and 13 rebounds.

Kaputo would tie the game at 59 with his first three-point shot with 7:18 left in the second half. He would also convert another three-pointer when being down 66-62 with 3:48 left in the game, keeping Bonas in striking distance to win the game.

St. Bonaventure will take this win and will start preparing for the George Washington Colonials coming to the Reilly Center on Sunday, Jan 28 at 12 p.m.

St. Bonaventure Starts Off Atlantic 10 Conference Play with Win Against UMass

By: Sean Lynch

The St. Bonaventure Bonnies ended 2017 with their first conference win of the season against The University of Massachusetts Minutemen 98-78 at home in the Reilly Center.

Coming off their first ever win in the Carrier Dome against the Syracuse Orange; the Bonnies continued the hot streak with their eighth win in a row to start off play in the Atlantic 10.

Jaylen Adams proved to be a key factor for the Bonnies, finishing with a game-high 32 points, 7 assists and 4 rebounds. Matt Mobley finished with 28 points, 4 rebounds and 3 assists.

The Bonnies started the game off hot, going on an 11-0 run after UMass scored the first basket of the game. UMass broke the streak at 16:32 with a Rashaan Holloway free throw.

The Minutemen broke off their own 13-0 run to tie the game at 23-23 after the Bonnies went on a four-minute drought. Courtney Stockard ended the scoreless spree with a free throw at 7:04. Jaylen Adams shot a long three to bring the lead back to seven with 3:39 left in the half.

St. Bonaventure opted for the long ball to close out the first half, hitting five straight three-pointers until Matt Mobley missed with 1:05 left in the first half. The Bonnies closed out the half with a 47-38 lead over the Minutemen.

Bonas started another run with a second half with another 10-0 run, once again thwarted by a Rashaan Holloway free throw at 12:34. The second half remained in the Bonnies hands behind Adams 17 second-half points.

A huge factor on offense came through Bonaventure’s three-point shooting. The Bonnies shot 8-11 (72.7%) in the first half and closed out the game shooting 10-18 (55.6%) from deep.

The Bonnies were also successful in defending the three, keeping the Minutemen at 8-23(34.8%) from long range.

The Bonnies will start the new year in Dayton, Ohio as they will take on the Flyers on January 3 at 8:30 p.m. in UD Arena.


Mobley keeping a “junkyard dog” mentality through expectations

By Nicholas Gallo

Despite some early setbacks, Matt Mobley and the St. Bonaventure Bonnies have fought through adversity and find themselves atop the A-10 standings.

Despite missing star guard Jaylen Adams for the first several games of the year, the Bonnies are 10-2 with wins over Buffalo, Maryland, Vermont and Syracuse in the Carrier Dome.

Many of those wins are thanks in part to Mobley, who received a nod for Preseason First Team All-A-10 Conference and is on his way to living up to that distinction.

Last year, Mobley finished top three on the team in steals, assists, rebounds, and points. In addition, Mobley led all Division-I players in minutes per game with 38.3. Mobley said that he had a good summer and was in the weight room, on the court, and continuing to improve his cardio.

“Two of the main aspects of my game that I worked on this summer was ball handling and shooting,” Mobley said. “I felt like those were the skills that I needed to improve on the most to get to the level where I want to be at.”

The senior guard’s grind has paid off, averaging 17.5 points per game, 1.4 steals and leading the conference in free throw percentage with 85.2% from the stripe.

Mobley and Adams have developed into a great one-two punch; becoming one of the best backcourts in the nation. Mobley said it’s exciting to play with Adams again.

“He draws so much attention and his vision is unlike any point guard I have ever played with,” Mobley said. “He gets his guys in the right spots and it’s great to play with him.”

Last March, the University of Dayton, Saint Joseph’s University, and Virginia Commonwealth University went dancing in the NCAA Tournament. This year, St. Bonaventure hopes to do the same thing as Mobley says he believes they should finish strong.

“We’re ready to go and we are all excited,” Mobley said. “Playing and performing is more important than any Preseason ranking.”

According to, the University of Rhode Island has been picked to repeat as A-10 champions in the 2017-18 preseason poll and St. Bonaventure is supposed to finish second.

So far this season, the Bonnies have handled those expectations.

While Mobley said that the team felt good about the hype, it won’t change their mindset.

“We still want to embrace that underdog mentality,” Mobley said. “Like our coaches say, we need to act like a ‘junkyard dog’ no matter what.”

Mobley said all the young guys are stepping up and standing out, though, at the end of the day, he said the veterans will determine how far this team can go.

“It’s on us, the captains, to get the young guys going,” Mobley said. “This team’s success is on us.”


Taqqee staying level-headed with high expectations

By Mike Hogan

Idris Taqqee has seen a great amount of action on the floor during his Bonnies career. Playing since his freshman year, Taqqee has experienced all the ups-and-downs of Bonas basketball.

Reporter Mike Hogan sat down with Taqqee to discuss his emotions going into his senior year, his thoughts about the higher expectations, and his basketball future.


Big news for you as you were just named a captain, how do you feel about that accomplishment?


Taqqee: I’m excited that my teammates have trusted me, and I am really excited to lead them every possession on the court.


You’re going into your last season as a Bonnie, what are your emotions in regards to that? How do you wish to be remembered here?


Taqqee: I just wish to be remembered for everything that I’ve done well and everything that I have worked on. It’s definitely bitter sweet that it’s my last year, but there’s a lot of things that we want to accomplish and we’re all going to work towards it together.


What kinds of things did you work on this offseason? What did you improve on the most?


Taqqee: I improved on consistency the most. I worked on every single aspect of my game from rebounding, ball handling, off the ball cutting, I can go on for days about what I worked on, but being consistent was huge.


What are the expectations for this year’s squad? What’s the vibe of the locker room?


Taqqee: The sky is the limit. We know that we have the capability to do anything that we put our minds to. We know everyone is talking A-10 tournament and the NCAA tournament, but we think we can go beyond that. Above and beyond.


In previous years you guys were ranked towards the bottom of the pack in the A-10, with the raised expectations this year how is the team handling them?


Taqqee: It’s definitely exciting. I have been here and have been able to grow with change. I’m happy and I am excited to see that, but it’s something where you just have to keep that same approach where nothing has changed. Nothing is guaranteed at the end of the day, but it’s definitely good to see the buzz and excitement.


What would it be like for you and the other seniors on this team to go out in your last season’s here making the NCAA tournament?


Taqqee: It’d be great man. All of the hard work would pay off, because there’s been a lot of hours spent in that gym. It’s something that I’ve had my eyes on.


What are you looking at after Bonaventure, are you looking to keep playing basketball?


Taqqee: Yeah, I want to keep playing basketball for as long as I can. I would play basketball for the rest of my life if I could.


Summer grind seeing early returns for Griffin

By Nicholas Gallo

Junior forward LaDarien Griffin entered the 2017-18 season looking to be a key contributor for St. Bonaventure men’s basketball team.

So far, he’s arguably one of the top three players night-in night-out on the court.

As a sophomore, The 6-foot-6 forward played 29 games and averaged 2.7 points, 2.2 rebounds, and 12.3 minutes per game.

Over the summer, Griffin said he stayed up at St. Bonaventure and worked on his game. When he went home, he played with a bunch of different guys, improving his shooting and developing more of an offensive game.

That extra work has paid off thus far.

Not only has Griffin been elevated to a starting role, but he’s been one of the most consistent Bonnies on both ends of the floor.

In three games, Griffin is doing it all, averaging 8.7 points, 7 rebounds, 1.3 assists, 1 steal and 1.3 blocks, to go along with his 50% shooting mark.

Griffin expressed his desire to help out Bonas’ three-guard attack.

“I’m looking to take some pressure off Idris Taqqee, Matt Mobley, and Jaylen Adams,” Griffin said. “Over two years you witness an enormous number of different situations and I need to do my part.”

Griffin said he wants to contribute more on scoring, playing defense, and being a leader. He believes for the team to have a great season, it will involve defensive play and togetherness.

“For us as a team, we need to commit and play defense, learn what each other’s strengths are, and stay connected as one,” Griffin said. “I believe once we fully are connected as one then we can be a hard team to stop.”

Griffin and some of the veteran players, have helped the freshman transition onto the team. He said he’s tried to help them through “the learning process.”

Griffin knows the hype surrounding the team this season and said he’s not worried about other teams in the Atlantic-10. He said the team needs to worry about what they can control and take care of it.

“If we start watching other teams, that is when we’ll lose sight of what our main goals are,” Griffin said. “I believe we can play with any team in the country and win.”


SBU celebrates Spirit Week: Day 4

By Caitlyn Morral @caiterthot

St. Bonaventure University students went back in time on the fourth day of Spirit Week with Throwback Thursday. From the time of hippies to 1990s pop, some students chose to adorn ensembles from different eras.

Today, The Intrepid asked students what word they would use to describe the Bonaventure experience.tbt

“Family, because I feel like it is a second home and second family for me,” said freshman and international studies major Flavia Pietrobattista. “The education system at Bonaventure is great. Everyone seemed so friendly to me, especially coming from another country. I am enjoying doing new things everyday in the community here.”

Continue reading “SBU celebrates Spirit Week: Day 4”


SBU celebrates Spirit Week: Day 3

By Caitlyn Morral @caiterthot

As the third day of the St. Bonaventure University Spirit Week landed on Veterans Day, the week continued with Patriotic Day. By dressing up in red, white and blue, students had the chance to show pride in both their school and in their country.

Today, The Intrepid asked some students why Bonaventure is important to them.

patriot 1

“I think that Bonaventure is a great school,” said senior and Spanish and international studies double major Kirsten Lankford. “Overall, it really is an amazing place to be a part of a family.”

Continue reading “SBU celebrates Spirit Week: Day 3”