- St. Bonaventure took a five-point lead early in the second half but could not hold on as Niagara used an 8-0 run to regain the lead with 14 minutes to play.
- Niagara attempted 25 free throws to the Bonnies' three.
- The Bonnies controlled the paint, outscoring Niagara 46-32 inside.
LEWISTON, N.Y. – Shorthanded yet again, St. Bonaventure fell to Big 4 rival Niagara Monday night, 80-72, at the Gallagher Center.
A 22-11 disparity in fouls called led to a 19-2 edge in free throws made for the Purple Eagles.
Playing without two senior starters, Courtney Stockard and LaDarien Griffin, the Bonnies jumped out to a quick 7-0 lead in the game's 1:05 behind baskets from Amadi Ikpeze, Tsheifu Ngalakulondi and Jalen Poyser.
Marvin Prochet scored eight of Niagara's first 13 points as they cut the early deficit to 16-13 midway through the first half. The Purple Eagles seized their first lead of the contest late in the first behind a 14-0 run over a span of three minutes to open a 27-22 lead.
Despite the Bonnies shooting 40.6 percent from the field and 50 percent from deep, Niagara took a 34-31 lead into the locker room.
Bona made its first seven out of 10 shots of the second half and outscored Niagara 16-8 to retake the lead at 47-42.
Back-to-back transition three pointers from Keleaf Tate put the Purple Eagles up one, 48-47, with 13 minutes to play. The Bonnies trailed 54-49 with just over nine minutes to play when Kyle Lofton hit a three with the shot clock winding down to bring Bona back within two, 54-52.
Osun Osunniyi kept the Bonnies within four, 62-58, with blocks on consecutive Niagara possessions with four minutes to play. An alley-oop from Lofton to Ngalakulondi pulled the Bonnies within five with three minutes to go. The Purple Eagles still led, 65-60.
Niagara pulled ahead, 68-62, with two minutes left before Prochet hit a deep three to put Niagara in command.
- St. Bonaventure was without injured senior forwards Courtney Stockard, who missed his third straight game, and LaDarien Griffin. Melkisedek Moreaux also did not dress due to an injury.
- Sophomore forward Tshiefu Ngalakulondi registered his first career double-double with 14 points and a career-high 13 rebounds.
- Jalen Poyser reached the 20-point plateau for the second straight game, ending with 21 points.
Up Next: St. Bonaventure will play in the Cayman Islands Classic Nov. 19-21 in Georgetown, Grand Cayman. The Bonnies' first opponent will be Georgia State on Nov. 19 at 5 p.m.
- By Steve Mest, Associate Director of Athletics
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