Sports

Men’s Basketball Splits Against Iona, Manhattan

M Basketball 02.14.18Men’s basketball split two matchups, first defeating the Iona Gaels 72-50 on Thursday night, and losing to the Manhattan Jaspers 93-76 on Saturday night. The win against was the Hawks’ first conference road win of the season.

“We were fortunate that we were able to play for a full 40 minutes tonight,” Head Coach King Rice said. “We have not played that well for 40 minutes in a long time, maybe the Bucknell game but our kids were in, they were bought in on defense, they were talking and we’ve been working on that a lot but it really came together tonight.”

Monmouth and Iona traded baskets for the first six minutes of the game before senior guard Austin Tilghman made a jumper to make it 11-10. The Hawks would lead the final 33:47 of the game.

The blue and white’s lead would be as high as 19 in the first half, before the Gaels’ hit two free throws to make it the halftime score of 41-24. Sophomore guard Louie Pillari led the way with ten first half points and six rebounds. Freshman guard had eight points, including two three-pointers.

In the second half, Monmouth would expand their lead to 24 points three times. The Hawks would win with a 22 point margin, their biggest win of the season. Monmouth held Iona to 32 percent shooting on the game, the lowest shooting percentage of the year for the Gaels.

“It always feels good to get a win,” Tilghman said. “I think one of the things we did well today is we limited those guys to one shot. I think with this Iona team or with any team if we limit guys to one shot we have guys that will get out on the fast break and that’s what we’re most dangerous at. We were able to get stops and limit them to one shot and control our offense and the tempo and we played our pace which really worked well for us tonight.”

Pillari was the lone Hawk in double-figures, finishing with 21 points. Four of his seven baskets made was from deep. Tilghman finished with six points and five boards and assists.

On Saturday, the Hawks were able to tie the game early in the second half but Manhattan was able to fight off Monmouth.

“We ran into a buzzsaw. (Manhattan Head Coach) Steve [Masiello] is one of the best coaches in the league, especially after the first time you play them,” Rice said. “My kids tried hard tonight, we fought… I didn’t help my kids enough tonight.”

Manhattan got off to a fast start, leading 12-2 in the first four minutes of the game. Pillari would hit a three-pointer to bring it to within three at the 12 minute mark in the first half. The Jaspers would go on a run to lead as high as 13 in the first half. A late Monmouth run would close the gap to make it the halftime score of 40-36 Manhattan.

The blue and white started the second half with a 5-0 run to give Monmouth their first lead of the game at 41-40. A three by freshman guard Deion Hammond would make it 47-43 Hawks, their largest lead of the game.

The Hawks and the Jaspers would trade baskets until Manhattan would make a layup to give them the 58-56 lead and they would take control for the final 9:10 of the game with the eventual score being 93-76.

For the game, Hammond finished with 19 points, five of his six baskets were from behind the arc. Freshman guard Ray Salnave had 16 points and added a career-high five steals.

The Hawks (8-17, 4-9 MAAC) will play the Canisius Golden Griffins at home on Friday, Feb. 16 at 7:00 p.m. before traveling up to Albany, NY to play the Siena Saints on Sunday, Feb. 18 at 2:00 p.m.

PHOTO TAKEN by Karlee Sell