Niagara couldn't bury the memory of Saturday's stunning collapse at Manhattan. The Purple Eagles were outscored 9-2 in the last 2:46 of the opening half and never got back into contention Monday night in a 77-59 loss to Fairfield at Alumni Hall on the Red Stags' campus.
After building a 41-30 halftime lead behind the shooting of freshman guard Neftali Alvarez, Fairfield (4-11) maintained double-digit lead the rest of the way to win its first in three Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference.
Niagara (7-8) fell to 0-2 in the conference and lost its third in a row overall.
Freshman guard Dominik Fragala led Niagara with 20 points, his collegiate high, on 7 for 9 shooting. Fragala played only 17 minutes. The rest of the Purple Eagles made only xx of xx shots. Fairfield shot 32.6 percent (15 of 46).
The Purple Eagles' last lead of the game was at 17-16 with 9:22 left in the first half.
Fairfield dominated the inside play, out-rebounding Niagara, 40-27, and scoring 48 of its points in the paint. Jonathan Kasibabu of the Stags had 20 points and 14 rebounds. He's a 6-foot-8, 240-pound senior forward from the Congo. Alvarez finished with 15 points.
Things don't get any easier for the Purple Eagles who will come home for MAAC games against Iona on Friday and Rider on Sunday afternoon at the Gallagher Center.
Griffs home to Brown tonight
After getting off to a 2-0 start on the road in Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference games, Canisius (5-8) will take one last nonconference break Tuesday night against Brown at the Koessler Center.
It's only the seventh time since Canisius joined the MAAC in 1989-90 that the Golden Griffins have started conference play 2-0.
Brown (10-4) has not opened its Ivy League schedule yet. The Bruins have won their last four. They defeated Maine, 75-67, in their last game.
It will be the seventh meeting all-time between Canisius and Brown, the first since Jan. 3, 2006 when Canisius won, 74-66, at the Koessler Athletic Center. The rivalry began in the 1960s when Stan Ward, a Canisius graduate, was the Brown coach.
Nichols School graduate Arnie Berman was Brown's career points leader with 1,668 until his mark was broken in 2003. Berman now is second on the list. His career scoring average of 21.6 is still the Brown record.
Sophomore Desmond Cambridge (18.0 ppg) and sophomore Tamenang Choh (7.9 rebounds) lead this Brown team, coached by Mike Martin.
Daemen ranked No. 1 in region
After splitting a pair of games in Texas, Daemen's men's basketball team is ranked first in the NCAA Division II Sports Information Directors of America East Region poll for Week Seven. It's the first time Daemen (11-2) has led the poll.
Coach Mike MacDonald's team's signature win in the region was 78-72 over previously unbeaten Saint Anselm last week. On Friday, the Wildcats defeated Dallas Baptist, 87-80, on a neutral court in Texas before their 11-game win streak ended on Sunday against St. Edwards in Austin, Texas.
Daemen will return to East Coast Conference action with home games on Friday against Molloy and on Sunday against Queens.
Two Daemen players, Jeff Redband and Andrew Sischo, were honored by the ECC on Monday. Redband was named ECC Player of the Week while Sischo was named ECC Defensive player of the Week.