St. Bonaventure’s rivalry with Canisius and Niagara in the old Western New York Little Three is the stuff of college basketball legend in Western New York.
Bona and the University at Buffalo? There’s almost no hoops history between the two until late in the 20th century.
Now they’ve become annual opponents, meeting for the last five seasons in a rivalry that didn’t get started until 1995.
The Bonnies will visit UB Alumni Arena at Wednesday night (Radio 1520, 7 p.m.) in only the 10th men’s basketball game between the schools.
Each is off to a promising start to the season. Bona is 3-2 including a road victory at Canisius last week.
UB is 4-2, including a championship of its bracket in the Hall of Fame Tip Off Classic in Connecticut in their first season under coach Nate Oats.
Bona owns a 7-2 advantage in all-time series, with one of the losses coming at Alumni Arena, 78-73, two years ago. The Bonnies are coming off a home loss to coach Joe Mihalich’s Hofstra team, 89-83.
Freshman Nick Perkins hammered home a dunk with four seconds remaining in overtime, to give UB a 98-96 win over Canisius on Saturday at Alumni Arena. It was the third win in a row for the Bulls.
The Bonnies will have three starters back from the team that handled UB last season, building a 34-18 halftime lead and going on to a 72-63 win at the Reilly Center. Dion Wright (19 points in last year’s meeting), Marcus Posley (12) and Jaylen Adams (8) are the starters back from that Bona team.
Back for UB from last year’s game are starters Lamonte Bearden and Jarryn Skeete as well as reserves Rodell Wigginton, Raheem Johnson and Mory Diane. UB newcomers include freshmen Perkins, and CJ Massenburg and junior college transfer Willie Conner and Blake Hamilton.
2 OTs for Bona women
Senior Katie Healy (Lancaster) suffered through a nightmarish overtime period, then scored eight of her game-high 26 points in the second extra session to lead St. Bonaventure to a 73-67 women’s basketball victory at Stony Brook on Tuesday night.
Healy was 3 for 6 at the free throw line in the first overtime period, which ended at 64-all on a layup by Kori Bayne-Walker of the Patriots with 1 second left.
Bona (4-2) led most of the game but found itself trailing 54-51 with the clock winding down before Miranda Drummond hit a three-point shot at the buzzer to send the game to the first overtime.
The Bonnies took a 62-61 lead on a layup by Mariah Ruff with 8 seconds left in the second extra period. The Patriots turned the ball over and fouled Healy with 5 seconds left, but she made only the second of two free throws, leaving the door open for Stony Brook
Besides her 26 points, Healy had six rebounds and four assists.