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Big 4: Crumpton's big game gives Canisius win; Niagara falls to Manhattan

Is there no end to the surprises coach Reggie Witherspoon’s Canisius Golden Griffins have in store?
The Griffs, who had their seven-game win streak ended at Iona on Sunday, bounced back with a surprisingly easy 86-72 triumph over Fairfield Tuesday night at Webster Banks Arena in Bridgeport, Conn.
Jermaine Crumpton, the former Niagara Falls High star, continued his junior year coming-out party for the Griffs, scoring a career-high 32 points in the victory over a Fairfield team which had defeated Manhattan and Iona last week to move near the top of the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference standings.
Canisius seemed in store for a tough game against the Stags. Instead, it was close to a blow out. Crumpton had 15 points and Phil Valenti 11 to lead the Griffs to a 46-31 halftime lead. The Griffs had led 46-29 after a three by freshman Spencer Foley. Crumpton continued in the second half. He ran his point total to 21 as Canisius built its lead to 52-33 and stayed in command the rest of the way. Between the two of them, Crumpton and Valenti who finished with 20 points, shot a combined 19 for 29. Crumpton’s total did not include any three-pointers. He made 10 of 12 free throws however. Kassius Robertson had 13 for Canisius.
The Griffs held Curtis Cobb of Fairfield to 13 points. He had scored 46, a Fairfield record, in his previous game against Manhattan.
Canisius made 30 of 58 shots for 51.7 percent. The Griffs were only five of 20 from three-point range.
Manhattan, which had been winless in MAAC play, rallied in the second half and defeated Niagara, 78-69, at Draddy Gymnasium in Riverdale. The Jaspers, who trailed by four at the break, outscored the Purple Eagles, 46-33, in the second half. Manhattan made 14 of 26 shots, 5 of 8 from three-point range, in the second half. Zavier Turner had 21 points and Calvin Crawford 20 for the Jaspers. Matt Scott had 21 to lead Niagara while Dominic Robb of the Purple Eagles had 15 points and 10 rebounds.
Niagara fell to 5-12 overall and 2-4 in the MAAC. Manhattan is 6-11 and 1-5 in the conference.
Wednesday’s games
St. Bonaventure’s men’s team puts a 2-0 record in true road games on the line when it faces Richmond in an Atlantic 10 Conference game at the Robins Center in Richmond, Va. Bona (10-5, 2-1 A-10) has won at Hofstra and Massachusetts the only game it’s played on an opponent’s normal home court. One loss was to Florida in Lakeland, Fla. and another was to Arkansas-Little Rock in Austin, Texas.
It will be the Bonnies’ only game against Richmond (9-6, 3-0 A-10) in the regular season. In their last meeting, Bona defeated the Spiders, 84-68, at the Reilly Center last Jan. 31. Richmond leads the all-time series between the schools, 16-6. Bona’s last win at the Robins Center was in 2009.
The Spiders have defeated Davidson, Fordham and George Washington so far in conference play. They are led by seniors T.J. Cline and guard ShawnDre’ Jones, both from the state of Texas. Cline, a 6-9 forward from Plano transferred from Niagara University where he averaged 7.9 points in 33 games in 2012-13, Joe Mihalich’s last season as coach of the Purple Eagles.
The University at Buffalo women’s team (11-3, 1-2 MAC) will play at home for the first time in the new year against Toledo (11-3, 2-1 MAC)in a Mid-American Conference game at Alumni Arena. Bulls coach Felisha Legette-Jack will be trying to right the ship after two resounding defeats in MAC play on the road last week.
UB, which won 11 of its first 12 games lost by 28 points at Ohio U. and by 17 at Central Michigan. Freshman Summer Hemphill (Cardinal O’Hara) cracked the UB starting lineup for the first time at Central Michigan and had 11 rebounds.
St. Bonaventure’s women (6-10, 1-13 A-10) will be out to end a three-game Atlantic 10 losing streak in a noon game at Saint Louis University (13-3, 3-0).  The Billikens are the highest scoring team in the conference, averaging 75.5 a game. Saint Louis was 26-8 overall and 13-3 in conference play last season and was the preseason favorite to win the A-10 title this season. The Billikens are the highest scoring team on the conference, averaging 75.5 a game. Saint Louis was 26-8 overall and 13-3 in conference play last season and was the preseason favorite to win the A-10 title this season. In their only meeting last season, the Bonnies played one of their best games of the season routing the Billikens, 80-59. Saint Louis is led by two of the bests players in the conference, Jackie Kemph and Sadie Stipanovich, who both were selected to the preseason all-conference team.

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