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Haddix pulls inside job against Griffs

This was not a picture worth framing for Canisius, not with Siena's Michael Haddix having his way inside against the undersized and short-handed Golden Griffins.

Canisius (5-8, 0-3 Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference) had no answers for the 6-foot-6 senior, who scored 26 points and grabbed a career-best 16 rebounds in the Griffs' 78-60 loss to the Saints on Wednesday night in front of 847 in the Koessler Center.

Canisius played without leading scorer Chuck Harris, who suffered a twisted medial collateral ligament in his left knee during the Griffs' last game, Dec. 29 at Hartford. Harris, a 6-3 senior guard from Detroit, will have surgery this afternoon and is expected to miss one to two weeks.

Harris, who is averaging 14 points, played 37 minutes in the 81-71 victory over Hartford but felt discomfort in his left knee when he returned home. He had an MRI on Tuesday.

"He provides great leadership and he's been very, very good to us all year as all the seniors have been," said Canisius coach Tom Parrotta, who with injuries and departures is down to nine scholarship players. "He's a very stabilizing force out there. . . . Anytime you take someone like that off the floor, you're going to be affected by it."

Siena coach Fran McCaffery said Harris was playing as well as any player in the MAAC.

"Last year he played a lot of point and did well, but I think he's one of the better two-guards in our league," he said. "Tommy really had them playing and they were going to him, and he and [Frank] Turner were a difficult combination."

Harris figured to be a matchup problem for Siena, which starts a freshman in the backcourt in Ronald Moore, and Harris might have helped on the boards (the Griffs were outrebounded, 44-33). But unless Harris grew several inches, he probably would have been useless against Haddix.

Haddix grabbed 23 rebounds in back-to-back games against Tennessee State and Maryland and figured to enjoy another big night against the Griffs, who have only two players on the roster over 6-6. Haddix finished with nine offensive rebounds.

"I come into every game with the same mind-set," said Haddix, who missed all of last season with a ruptured Achilles. "Darnell Wilson is athletic and so is the big guy [Shaun] James so they're two athletes in there and they're pretty strong inside. You have to come in with a mind-set of taking what they give you, so I thought I'd crash the boards and get offensive rebounds."

Yes, Wilson and James are athletic, but they're also willowy. The 255-pound Haddix outweighs James by 35 pounds and Wilson by 40. He proved to be super-sized trouble.

"He's going to score," Wilson said, "no matter what you do."

Siena (7-5, 3-0), the last unbeaten team in the MAAC, led, 34-30, at the half when it began to pull away. Back-to-back treys by Moore and David Ryan put the finishing touches on a 9-0 run to start the half.

The Griffs were led by junior Pawel Malesa, who made his first start, with 20 points.


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