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Bonnies Hold Off Duquesne, 80-77, To Secure 10th Conference Win

Location: St. Bonaventure, N.Y.  |  Reilly Center

Box Score (PDF)  |  Statistics With Play-By-Play 

St. Bonaventure Starters: #10 G Jaylen Adams, #2 G Matt Mobley, #1 G Idris Taqqee, #12 F Denzel Gregg, #33 F Josh Ayeni

The Short Story
After a first half in which Duquesne made eight three-pointers, St. Bonaventure knew it needed an improved defensive effort in the second half. The Bonnies did just that, limiting the Dukes to eight total field goals after halftime en route to an 80-77 win Saturday at the Reilly Center.

The win was St. Bonaventure's 10th Atlantic 10 Conference win (10-6), extending the program's streak of double-digit A-10 victories to three seasons.

To earn the win, the Bonnies (18-10) had to survive a late rally by Duquesne. St. Bonaventure led by 15 points with 8:22 left, but the Dukes came back to tie the score at 74 with 1:09 remaining.

Matt Mobley, who led St. Bonaventure with 20 points, made five free throws in the last 38 seconds to help close out the win. Still, it was a 79-77 game when Jaylen Adams missed two free throws with 15 seconds left. Mike Lewis missed a three-pointer with seven seconds left, and Mobley made one of two at the line to leave the door open. But St. Bonaventure made one final defensive stand as it forced Lewis into a desperation shot that was not close.

In the second half, the Bonnies held Duquesne to 8-25 (32 percent) shooting including 1-11 from three-point range.

Denzel Gregg anchored the Bona defense with four blocks including one on Lewis with 39 seconds left. Gregg also had 14 rebounds and 15 points. Josh Ayeni scored 15 points while Jaylen Adams had 14 points and five assists.

Quotes From Coach Mark Schmidt:
"I say it all the time, the first 10 possessions of the second half are critical. I thought we did a great job defending and getting some steals and finishes. Matt (Mobley) did a really good job in those five, six minutes."

"We found a way ... we made enough plays and I thought we defended. I thought we defended and that's something we struggled with earlier in the year … (defense) is something that we have gotten better at."

"No matter who you are playing, whether it is the first place or last place team, you've got to play well to win in this league. When we are consistent we are as good as anybody."

Beyond The Box Score:

  • St. Bonaventure remains in fifth place in the A-10, one game behind Rhode Island and Richmond.
  • The Bonnies have now won 10, 14 and 10 conference games the last three seasons.
  • With five assists against the Dukes, Jaylen Adams moved into the top five all-time in program history, now with 422 helpers.
  • There were 56 fouls called in Saturday's game, 27 against the Bonnies. St. Bonaventure, which entered the game 11th nationally in free throw percentage (.774), was just 23-37 at the line.
  • The Homecoming Weekend game was the second sellout at the RC this season.

Up Next: St. Bonaventure will travel to North Carolina to face Davidson next Tuesday, Feb. 28. Tipoff will be at 7 p.m.

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