Talk about an encore. Four days after he scored 40 points at Duquesne, Jaylen Adams topped that with a career high 44, including a school record 10 three-pointers, to lead St. Bonaventure past Saint Louis 79-56 on Wednesday at the Reilly Center.
Adams missed only four shots in the game, going 14-18 from the field, 10-13 from three-point range and 6-8 at the free throw line. The senior point guard also added six assists, giving him a hand in 74 percent of the Bonnies' points.
Adams now has just the third back-to-back 40-point games in school history, joining Bob Lanier (February of 1969) and Tom Stith (Dec. of 1959). The 44 points are the sixth-best single game performance in program history and the most scored by a Bonnies player since Marcus Posley's 47 against Saint Joseph's March 2, 2016.
St. Bonaventure has now won five in a row to move to 17-6 overall and grab sole possession of third place in the Atlantic 10 at 7-4. The win was the Bonnies' ninth straight at home.
In support of Adams' torrid shooting, the Bonnies were strong defensively the whole night. Saint Louis shot only 37 percent from the field, was 4-18 from long range and committed 16 turnovers. St. Bonaventure held a 21-2 edge in points off turnovers. The Bonnies had only four turnovers themselves, a season low.
Adams made four three-pointers and scored 17 points in the first half as the Bonnies opened a 36-28 lead by halftime. Saint Louis did lead for 8:31 of the first half and was ahead 17-11 before the Bonnies responded with a 15-1 run to go in front 26-18 by the 6:02 mark. Adams made a trio of three-pointers in that run.
In the second half, the Billikens trimmed the margin down to three points at 43-40 before Adams got hot again, sparking a 19-4 run. He made three-pointers at 11:28, 9:13 and 8:45, the last one from nearly 30 feet from the basket.
Adams' school record 10th three-pointer came with 3:26 left in the game. He broke the mark of nine set by his teammate Matt Mobley last season against VCU.
Mobley was held to four points but had a career moment of his own as his first field goal of the game gave him 1,000 for his St. Bonaventure career. Mobley has 1,002 points in 55 career games. The senior started his college career at Central Connecticut State.
Courtney Stockard finished with 14 points and six rebounds, while Amadi Ikpeze scored eight points in 24 minutes. The Bonnies played the second half without LaDarien Griffin, who sprained his right ankle in the first half.
Quotes From Coach Mark Schmidt
"Jay played like a player of the year. (SLU) cut (the lead) down the three and (Adams) just took over the game from there. He could not have played better ... under a lot of pressure. A lot of guys are getting into him. For him to score that many points and only miss four shots, that speaks volumes. He was very efficient. For a guard, that was better than anyone else ... He put us on his back and willed us to a victory. It was a great win against a really good team. Now we just have to move on and keep climbing that mountain."
On the Bonnies' defense: "It was one of the big reasons why we won. That's the difference. They're a good half-court defensive team so you try and get stuff of our defense and we did that. Even some of Jay's threes were in transition. They were broken plays and that's what we tried to do. Our goal is to keep our turnovers under 10. Four is terrific."
Quotes From Jaylen Adams
"Early on, I was able to get some shots to go. I had some easy ones in transition that got me going early. Then, once a shooter makes his first couple, it felt like I could not miss out there. I was really locked in."
"Coach just gives me the confidence for me to go out there and be myself. My teammates understand that I would like to lead the team, so just going out there and trying to be the best leader I can be, make good shots and let the game come to me and they gave me a little bit more than I bargained for tonight."
"I had a really good week in the gym last week. It paid off. I just had a good week in the gym. I'm just trying to will some wins and I think the last two games, I've just been able to score the ball better."
Stats of the Game
74 – the percent of St. Bonaventure's points either scored or assisted by Jaylen Adams.
Beyond The Boxscore
The Bonnies have now won nine straight games at the Reilly Center.
Up Next: St. Bonaventure will host Richmond this Saturday, Feb. 10, at 4 p.m. The game is sold out.
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