The historic run to open the season ended for the University at Buffalo women's basketball team Friday while Jaylen Adams and the St. Bonaventure men are off to a good start in their bid to repeat their surprising season of a year ago in the Atlantic 10 Conference.
Harvard, which had not lost since its season opener at Minnesota, handed UB a 74-62 defeat in the championship game of the Fordham Holiday Classic at the Rose Hill Gym in the Bronx. The Bulls had started the season by winning their first 10 games, best start in the history of women's basketball at UB.
Adams scored 29 points as Bona opened its A-10 season with an 89-77 victory over Massachusetts at the Mullins Center in Amherst, Mass.
The Canisius and Niagara women each dropped road games in Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference. Canisius fell at Iona, 55-52, while Niagara lost to Saint Peter's 78-66 at the Yanitelli Center in Jersey City, N.J.
A 15-2 Harvard run wiped out UB's last lead of the game but the Crimson had so survive a second half rally by the Bulls. Harvard led 52-45 entering the fourth quarter. Gabi Bade led a UB comeback attempt which got the Bulls to within three points, 61-58, before Harvard pulled away again. Bade had three three-point baskets in the fourth quarter.
Cassie Oursler (Grand Island) led UB with 15 points and nnine rebounds. Bade had 13. Stephanie Reid shot only 1 for 7 and had eight points for UB but she contributed 10 assists. Team scoring leader JoAnna Smith was limited to nine points on 3 for 12 shooting.
Harvard shot a torrid 5.2 from the florr (26 of 48) and made 6 of 12 free throw. Guard Katie Benzan led the Crimson with 18 points, including 4 of 4 from three-point range.
UB will have to get over Friday's disappointment quickly. The Bulls will open their Mid-American Conference schedule at 5:30 p.m. on Saturday against Miami (Ohio) at Alumni Arena (Radio 1520.)
Matt Mobley added 23 points of his own in the Bona victory as the two guards accounted for 52 of their team's 89 points. They came into the game averaging a combined 43.4 points per game.They made key baskets, too.
UMass had only one lead in the game, 19-18, but Adams erased that with a three. The Minutemen tied the game at 27 and trailed by one, 33-32 before Mobley came through with a three to help Bona to a43-35 halftime lead.
Adams hit 9 of 15 shots, including 4 of 7 from three-point range. He was perfect in seven free-throw attempts. Mobley made 6 of 13 field goal attempts, 2 of 6 on threes, and was 9 for 10 at the line.
Junior guard Donte Clark led UMass with 19 points. Sophomore center Rashaan Holloway had 15 points.
In New Rochelle, Iona closed with a 7-1 run over the final in its victory over the Canisius women (2-10, 1-2 MAAC). The Golden Griffins' had gone on a 10-0 run to take a 51-48 advantage. Alexis Lewis hit a three from the wing with 14 seconds left to snap a 52-all tie. A positive note for the Griffs was the play of Tamara Miskovic, who had 10 points here high since before a season-ending knee injury last season. Sara Hinriksdottir and Saliah Serrette led Canisius with 10 points each. Lewis and Karynda Dupree had 15 each for Iona (7-5, 2-1 MAAC).
Victoria Rampado (22 points, 13 rebounds) had her third straight double-double for Niagara (4-8, 1-2) in the loss at Saint Peter's (3-9, 2-1 MAAC). After a 30-30 score at the half, Niagara took a 54-52 lead into the final quarter, but the Peacocks went on a 11-0 run to start the final period. Niagara was only to get as close as 63-58 after that. Morgan Baughman had a career-high 13 points for Niagara while Tiffany Corsell had 11 points and three steals. Telas Hughes of Saint Peter's was high scorer in the game with 21.