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Bona men have big week on tap against A-10 foes

A major victory on the road at Saint Joseph’s. A dramatic home win on a three-pointer at the buzzer by Jaylen Adams to defeat Saint Louis.

What does the St. Bonaventure men’s basketball team have in store this week?

Coach Mark Schmidt’s Bonnies (15-6, 7-3 A-10) open another important week on Wednesday night, facing Fordham (12-9, 3-7) at the historic Rose Hill Gym in the Bronx (7 p.m. Radio 95.7 FM). On Saturday afternoon, Bona will be home against George Washington, which is tied with the Bonnies for fourth place in the Atlantic 10 Conference standings. GW will be home against Saint Joseph’s (8-2 A-10) Wednesday night in another key conference game.

If Bona wins Wednesday night, Schmidt will pass Eddie Donovan on the all-time coaching list at the school. They each have 140 victories right now. Donovan is largely credited with putting St. Bonaventure on the college basketball map in the 1950s and early ’60s before going on to help construct the New York Knicks’ 1970 NBA championship team and building the Buffalo Braves from scratch to a playoff contender in the early ’70s.

The Bonnies will be looking for their fourth straight victory. The host Rams record in their first year under coach Jeff Neubauer may be modest but their 12 wins are the most for a Fordham team since 2007-08.

Bona leads the all-time series with Fordham, 22-15, having won eight of the last 10 times the schools have met. The Bonnies won, 66-52, at the Reilly Center last year with Marcus Posley leading the way with 18 points.

Fordham is 11-3 at home, but its last game was an 82-60 loss to Saint Joseph’s. Senior guard Mandell Thomas leads a three-guard Rams lineup, scoring at 14.7 points per game and making 38 percent of his three-point tries.

Posley leads the Bonnies in scoring at 18.9 ppg, but Adams, a sophomore, has raised his scoring pace to 18.5. He was named A-10 Player of the Week for the second time this season after averaging 25.0 points for the week. Senior Dion Wright, the third member of Bona’s Big Three, is averaging 16.0 points and 9.3 rebounds.

The St. Bonaventure women (19-4, 8-2 A-10) will be home Wednesday night against Saint Louis (18-5, 8-2). The Bonnies have been off for a week since a 52-47 loss at Virginia Commonwealth on Feb. 3. Saint Louis, in its third season under coach Lisa Stone, has already matched its school record for victories in a season. The Billikens are led by Jackie Kemph, who is fifth in the A-10 in scoring with 15.3 ppg. Bona is 4-0 against Saint Louis in the Reilly Center and 7-3 overall but this may be the strongest Billikens team it has ever faced.

After a home loss to Ball State on Saturday, the University at Buffalo women (11-10, 3-7 Mid-American Conference) begin a two-game Ohio swing at Toledo (7 p.m., Radio 1520). The Rockets are 12-9, 7-3 in the MAC.

Toledo has dominated the all-time series with the Bulls, 17-4, but Bulls have won two of the last three with both wins coming at home.

UB junior Joanna Smith was named MAC East Player of the Week after she averaged 18.5 points and 5.0 rebounds for two games last week. Junior center Cassie Oursler (Grand Island) stayed out of foul trouble and played 30 minutes against Ball State. The result was a career-high five blocks to go with 10 points and seven rebounds in the loss.

Toledo, which has won three in a row, is led by Brenae Harris (14.6 ppg), Janice Monakana (10.9 ppg) and Ana Capotosto (10.4 ppg). Capotosto burned the Bulls for 18 points in a 68-61 loss at Alumni Arena last February.

The Bulls stay on the road for a Saturday afternoon game at nearby Bowling Green.