Canisius 64, Manhattan 60
Game Analysis: The Griffs struggled with Manhattan's extended defense in the early going but made 16 of their final 30 field goal attempts, built a 13-point advantage and held on. Give a lot of credit to Jaspers coach Steve Masiello. He's had to retool the offense after losing top scorer George Beamon to a severe ankle sprain four games into the season. Freshman gunner Shane Richards stepped up with 18 points (six treys) and junior guard Michael Alvarado (18 points) challenged the Griffs inside.
Player of the Game: When Isaac Sosa's on, good things come in threes. He went 8 of 13 from the field, including 5 of 10 from behind the arc, in scoring a season-high 25 points (one off his career high). He also had four rebounds, two assists and just one of Canisius's 16 turnovers.
Best Supporting Role: Center Jordan Heath chipped in with nine points, eight boards, two steals and a block and helped loosen up the Manhattan defense in the first half.
Stat Check: Put it's two drought together and Manhattan didn't score a field goal for 18 of the 40 minutes.
Stat Check II: The Jaspers won the battle of the benches, 28-3.
Sighting: Canisius guard Alshwan Hymes was back in uniform after his indefinite suspension but did not play for the fourth straight game.
Deceptive: At 6-foot-5, 185 pounds, Shane Richards looks non-threatening. But the freshman from New York is the reigning MAAC Rookie of the Week and dumped six treys on the Griffs. He was 6 of 9 from beyond the arc.
What It Means: The Griffs are back above .500 in the MAAC (4-3) while Manhattan dropped to 3-4.
In the House: Coach Jim Baron said he feels like a Fuller Brush salesman as he tries to generate attendance. The skeptics aren't giving in easily. There were only 1,370 on hand and student representation was lean.
They Said It
Billy Baron on his father's 400th win: "I feel very, very fortunate to be in this spot, to grow up in a basketball family. It's meant a lot to me. I've understood what it is to work hard from him. I've understood what that work ethic is through my mother. And my brother has paved the way for me and guided me along the way along with my parents. I'm very blessed and I know my brother would say the same."
Jim Baron: "Manhattan's a scrappy team. That's the league we're in. Everybody's very, very scrappy, coming back at you, just like Siena down in Albany playing in front of 5,000 fans."
Manhattan coach Steve Masiello on his players: "There's no quit in them. They fight. They understand that our best days are ahead of us. We're going to return almost 90 percent of this team. Some very good players sitting out. Some very good players coming in. They know that."
Next Up: The Griffs get their rematch with Siena at 2 Saturday afternoon in the KAC. Manhattan heads up the road to Niagara.
-- Bob DiCesare
taggedCanisius | College basketball | Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference