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Bonnies Cruise Past Alfred in Final Preseason Tune-up

Alejandro Vasquez led all scorers with 20 points Wednesday night. (Photo: Craig Melvin)
Alejandro Vasquez led all scorers with 20 points Wednesday night. (Photo: Craig Melvin)
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Box Score (PDF)

ST. BONAVENTURE, N.Y. – In the final test of the preseason, the St. Bonaventure men's basketball team dominated visiting Alfred with a 90-45 victory in its annual exhibition game Wednesday night at the Reilly Center.

Alejandro Vasquez made his Bonaventure debut by scoring a game-high 20 points on 7-of-14 shooting from the floor. Bobby Planutis (11 points), Robert Carpenter (10) and Alpha Okoli (10) all scored in double figures as well.

Despite welcoming six newcomers to the roster for the new season, the Bonnies stifled the Saxons from the outset.

Alfred scored the game's first four points, but the Bonnies broke off the next 14 while holding the Saxons off the scoreboard for over nine minutes of game action.

The visitors narrowed their deficit back to single digits at the under-8 media timeout, but a jumper in the paint from the team's lone senior, Amadi Ikpeze, and back-to-back layups from freshman Robert Carpenter pushed the lead back to 26-12.

Bona cruised the rest of the way, taking a 34-21 lead to intermission and extending the cushion to 40 points late.

Alfred, which won 24 games last year en route to an NCAA Division III Tournament bid after winning the Empire 8 Conference, never gained traction offensively. Bona limited Alfred to just 30 percent shooting from the floor (17-for-55) and forced 21 turnovers.

Another freshman, Justin Winston paced the Bonnies on the boards with nine rebounds along with three blocks. Junior transfer Matt Johnson delivered nine points and eight assists.

St. Bonaventure officially opens its Centennial Season of action Tuesday night vs. Ohio at the Reilly Center. That game is slated for a 7:30 p.m. tipoff following the conclusion of the women's season-opener earlier that night.

GAME NOTES

  • Kyle Lofton, Dominick Welch, Alejandro Vasquez, Bobby Planutis, and Amadi Ikpeze started for the Bonnies.
  • Bona won the battle of the boards, 50-36, and outscored the Saxons by a 48-26 margin in the paint.
  • Despite starting the game 0-for-11 from behind the arc, the Bonnies went 7-13 In the second half.
  • Walk-on Malik Lacewell played in front of The RC crowd for the first time, sinking both of his shot attempts including a corner trey for five points.
  • Head coach Mark Schmidt's son Mike continues the Schmidt tradition at Alfred. Mike scored eight points in 21 minutes of action for the Saxons.
  • Winston (9), Carpenter (9), Okoli (7) and Welch (6) all had six or more rebounds.

QUOTES FROM HEAD COACH MARK SCHMIDT

"There were some bad things that we did, some things we need to improve on. Everybody, especially the young guys, to get them comfortable in this environment. They get the uniform on, the lights on. There were some butterflies as you saw in the first half. As the game went along, I thought our offense got better. We shot better in the second half."

"There were some good things. (Vasquez) shot the ball well when he takes good shots. There's a lot of things that we need to work on both offensively and defensively. Hopefully the guys got comfortable. We'll get back to work tomorrow and get ready for Ohio Tuesday."

On Vasquez: "He can shoot the ball when he shoots good shots, but he's picked up the system quicker than some other guys that we've had in my 13 years, but he has a lot to work on. His defense, as you saw tonight. We need two or three of the young guys to help us and hopefully he'll be one of those guys."

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