- Playing shorthanded yet again, St. Bonaventure was undone by turnovers as Georgia State scored 23 points off 18 turnovers by the Bonnies.
- The Bonnies played the majority of the game with just seven scholarship players. Freshman guard Dominick Welch started but played 17 minutes – none after halftime.
- Jalen Poyser led the young Bonnies with 23 points, tying his career high.
GEORGETOWN, GRAND CAYMAN – Turnovers haunted an otherwise strong effort by St. Bonaventure in a 75-65 loss to Georgia State in the first round of the Cayman Islands Classic on Monday at John Gray Gym.
Using a trapping zone defense, Georgia State came up with 13 steals on 18 Bonnies turnovers.
However, each time the Bonnies fell behind they were able to fight back and stay within reasonable striking distance. Near the end of the first half, St. Bonaventure trailed by as many as 10 points but three-pointers by Kyle Lofton and Alpha Okoli helped the Bonnies pull within 37-32 at intermission.
In the second half, another three-pointer by Lofton 3:34 into the half cut the deficit to three at 40-37. Georgia State, though, scored nine unanswered points from there to push its lead to 49-37 by the 14:39 mark.
St. Bonaventure twice pulled within eight points but could not come any closer than that.
Jalen Poyser tied his career high with 23 points. He was 5-9 from three-point range. As a team, the Bonnies went 12-27 from three-point range. Lofton was 3-4 and Okoli went 2-4. Lofton (13 points), Nelson Kaputo (11) and Okoli (10) joined Poyser in double figures. The Bonnies did out-rebound Georgia State 37-35 led by Amadi Ikpeze with seven boards.
- St. Bonaventure was again without injured senior forwards Courtney Stockard, who missed his third straight game, and LaDarien Griffin.
- Tshiefu Ngalakulondi made his second straight start and ended with five rebounds and three blocked shots, a career high.
- Alpha Okoli came off the bench to score a season high 10 points and grab five rebounds.
Up Next: St. Bonaventure will play Boise State, which dropped its opener to Creighton, on Tuesday afternoon at 5:00.
- By Steve Mest, Associate Director of Athletics
St. Bonaventure basketball tickets are available via GoBonnies.com/tickets; by calling (716) 375-2500 or at the St. Bonaventure ticket office in the Reilly Center. For the latest news on St. Bonaventure athletics, stay connected on social media. Follow the Bonnies on Twitter @GoBonnies and get men's basketball updates @BonniesMBB. Keep up with the Bonnies on Facebook /GoBonnies and on Instagram @GoBonnies.