BROOKLYN, N.Y. – Making plays. That was the difference in the opener of first round action between St. Bonaventure and LaSalle in the Atlantic 10 Tournament at the Barclays Center. More specifically, the Bonnies made plays in the stretch and emerged with an 82-72 win.
A look at efficiency shows they made a succession of plays all game.
St. Bonaventure 58
(a deliberate tempo)
St. Bonaventure 141
Those are outstanding numbers for the Bonnies (17-14). They shot a 57 percent eFG percentage while commiting only six turnovers, a sterling 10 percent TO rate. “They made tough shots from tough angles,” said LaSalle coach Dr. John Giannini. “They played terrific offense.”
The Bonnies had four in double figures, paced by Youssou Ndoye with 19 points. The seven-foot Junior was effective in the paint, a big key for the Bonnies. “When your big men are playing well, the offense runs so much better,” Schmidt said. Fifth year senior Marquis Simmons added 15 points along with 7 rebounds.
Jerrell Wright of LaSalle scored a game-high 26 points. The 6-8 Explorer (15-16) forward added nine rebounds. “We didn’t do as good a defensive job on (Jerrell) Wright,” Schmidt admitted.
Next up for the Bonnies is number one seed Saint Louis. “They are well-coached, habe a great player in (Jordair) Jett and play tough, physical defense,” Schmidt praised. “Right now,” he added in jest, “I’ll enjoy this for about 15 minutes before I think of Saint Louis.”