St. Bonaventure Men's Basketball Game Preview: Alfred University Saxons (exhibition)
Game Date: Friday, Nov. 2
Time: 7:15 p.m.
Location: Bob Lanier Court at the Reilly Center
St. Bonaventure 26-8 | Alfred 18-9
Radio: WPIG 95.7 FM with Gary Nease and Don Scholla
Friday night, a new year for St. Bonaventure when it hosts Alfred in its only exhibition game. It will be the Bonnies' final tune-up for their season-opener next Wednesday against Bucknell. In contrast to last season, this year's Brown and White are a mix of veterans and new players. The new contingent includes four freshmen and two transfers, while the returning core is led by seniors Courtney Stockard, LaDarien Griffin and Nelson Kaputo. This is the third year in a row the Bonnies and Saxons have met in an exhibition game. The game will tip off at 7:15, or 30 minutes following the end of the women's exhibition game.
All tickets are $7 and include admission to the women's game vs. which will tip at 5:00. For more details, call the SBU Ticket Office at 716-375-2500 or CLICK HERE.
STOCKARD MAKES PRESEASON ALL-CONFERENCE
Jack-of-all-trades and preseason All-Conference second team pick Courtney Stockard will be a leader for the Bonnies this season. It's tough to assign him a position because he can play just about any role needed. Last March, the nation watched as Stockard scored 26 points to lead St. Bonaventure's win over UCLA in the NCAA Tournament. The sixth-year senior is also a testament to perseverance, as he suffered through two entire seasons (2015-16 and 2016-17) on the sidelines due to foot injuries.
A new but experienced Bonnies player is junior guard Jalen Poyser, who sat out last season after transferring from UNLV. A top-100 recruit coming out of high school at Orangeville (Canada) Prep, Poyser averaged 10.4 points per game as a sophomore at UNLV. Poyser is one of the six new players on the Bonnies' roster this season including four freshmen: guards Kyle Lofton, Alpha Okoli and Dominick Welch and center Osun Osunniyi. Junior college transfer Melkisedek Moreaux, a 6-6 small forward, rounds out the newcomers. It's a heralded group, with all five players in the hunt for immediate playing time. Lofton and Osunniyi were teammates on Putnam (Conn.) Science Academy's 2017-18 national prep champion team.
One of the main storylines going into the 2018-19 season will be who is not on the St. Bonaventure roster rather than who is. When you graduate three players the caliber of Jaylen Adams, Matt Mobley and Idris Taqqee, that is understandable. The trio combined to score 3,713 points over their careers and were a part of 87 wins, a school record for a graduating class. Adams, who earned a two-way contract with the Atlanta Hawks, and Mobley both made the first team All-Conference last season.
A LOOK AT ALFRED
A member of the NCAA Div. III Empire 8 Conference, Alfred finished 18-9 last season, an improvement of eight wins over the prior year. The Saxons return three of their top five leading scorers from last season, guards Sage Brown (11.3 ppg) and Scotty Stopera (11.2) along with small forward Dom LeMorta (10.7). Those three players all started every game last season for coach Russ Phillips. Brown earned second team All-Empire 8 honors. Stopera and LeMorta combined to make 109 three-pointers last year and both connected on better than 38 percent of their attempts. Alfred does have some size on the roster with a pair of freshman forwards, 6-8 Brewster Marshall and 6-6 Elliot Bowen, who played his high school basketball at Ellicottville.
The new agreement with ESPN+ to be the official video streaming partner of the Atlantic 10 Conference means all St. Bonaventure games that are not shown on a national or regional TV network will be shown on ESPN+. The broadcasts will be produced in-house under the direction of Rick Karnath, an adjunct professor in the Jandoli School of Communication. Karnath will lead a group of students who will work alongside Athletics Department staff to air both men's and women's games. ESPN+ can be accessed in the Watch tab of the latest version of the ESPN App, available on the web, iPhone, iPad, tvOS, Android, Apple TV, Roku, Chromecast and FireTV for a subscription of $4.99 per month. Please note: due to delays in equipment shipping, St. Bonaventure's broadcasts will not include replays or ESPN graphics at this point in time. These features will be added as soon as the equipment arrives on campus.
The Bonnies will open the regular season next Wednesday, Nov. 7, at home against Bucknell, a club that reached the 2018 NCAA Tournament and was picked to finish second in the Patriot League this year. Tipoff will be at 7:00.
Season tickets for St. Bonaventure men's basketball games are remain on sale. To order, call the SBU Ticket Office at (716) 375-2500 or visit GoBonnies.com/Tickets.
For the latest news on St. Bonaventure athletics, stay connected on social media. Follow the Bonnies on Twitter @GoBonnies and get women's basketball updates @BonniesMBB. Keep up with the Bonnies on Facebook /GoBonnies and on Instagram @GoBonnies.