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Big 4 Hoops: It's Super Sunday for Canisius, Niagara men

Super Sunday turned out to be just that for the Canisius College men's basketball team.

The surprising Golden Griffins continued to push for the lead in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference with a 73-58 victory over Saint Peter's at the Yanitelli Center in Jersey City, N.J.

By winning, the Griffs (9-2 MAAC) remained a half game behind first-place Rider (10-2) in the conference standings. Rider won at Quinnipiac, 74-59. Iona (9-3) routed Marist, 98-64, to stay a half-game back of Canisius.

Canisius will play at Rider on Feb. 18.

Canisius scored 27 of its 42 first-half points from outside the three-point arc in opening a 12-point lead on the Peacocks, who on Friday had put a defensive clamp on Niagara's high-scorers, holding down the Purple Eagles in a 58-52 victory.

The Griffs shot a torrid 51.7 percent (15 of 29) in the first half including 9 of 18 from three-point range and led or were tied for all but 1:51 of the game.

Canisius had a well-balanced attack led by Isaiah Reese with 15 points, Jermaine Crumpton and Jonathan Sanks had 14 points each while Selvedin Planincic had 11. Freshman Takal Molson had a career high 11 rebounds for Canisius.

The Griffs limited the Peacocks to 41.5 percent shooting. Saint Peter's made just 4 of 20 from three-point range. Leading scorer for the Peacocks was Mamaodou Ndiaye, who scored 11 points off the bench.

Niagara 96, Monmouth 91: Frustrated at Saint Peter's on Friday, the Purple Eagles erupted behiind a 25-point game by Kahlil Dukes to defeat the Hawks at Ocean FirstBank Center in West Long Branch, N.J.  The senior guard was 10 for 10 at the free-throw line.

Niagara (8-4 MAAC) stands alone in fourth place in the MAAC with four of its remaining six conference games at home.

Niagara trailed 44-42 at halftime, but rallied in the second half to gain a sweep of the season series with coach King Rice's Monmouth team (7-16, 3-8)

Dukes was the only double-figure scorer for the Purple Eagles. Junior forward Greg King had 11 rebounds for the winners.

Five Monmouth players scored in double figures led by reserve Louis Pillari who had 18 points. AustinTilghman had 13 rebounds.

Women's basketball

George Washington 63, St. Bonaventure 56: How do you out-rebound a team by 14 boards and lose? Easy. Lose the turnover battle, 16-5.
The visiting Colonials (11-11, 6-4 Atlantic 10) took advantage of the Bonnies' carelessness with the ball to lead for three-quarters of the game. It was the fifth straight loss for Bona (7-17, 2-9 A-10).

Senior Mariah Ruff had 21 points, including 12 for 14 at the foul line, for the Bonnies. Mckenna Maycock (Randolph) and Abigail Johnson had 10 points each. Johnson, a 6-2 freshman from England, took down 11 rebounds for her first career double-double. It was her second game back in the lineup after missing Bona's first nine conference games with injury.

"The biggest moment, it is tied up 48-48 and we weren't able to get stops when we needed them," St. Bonaventure coach Jesse Fleming said. "It was great to see Abigail play very well. She's a physical kid who plays really hard and with passion. She still isn't 100 percent, but she is working really hard. It was also good to see Mariah getting into attack mode. Different people stepped up at different times and there was good and bad today."

Tonight's game

Saint Peter's at Canisius: After their victory over Niagara on Wednesday, the Golden Griffins (7-15, 5-6 MAAC) return to action seeking a sweep of their season series with the Peahens (4-19, 1-11) in a 7 p.m. game at the Koessler Center.

Canisius won the first meeting, 66-53, two weeks ago in Jersey City. The Griffs have won the last 10 games in the rivalry since the last Saint Peter's win on Feb. 7, 2013. Saint Peter's ended a 14-game losing streak with a win over Monmouth on Jan. 26, but has lost three in a row since.


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