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Saint Peter’s Men’s Basketball Falls Short To Iona

The Saint Peter’s men’s basketball team’s record went down to 7-7, and their MAAC record to 1-2, after a close contest, 73-69, against the Iona Gaels in a Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference away game on Friday night on ESPNU. The Gaels won in a comeback victory after trailing two Peacock double-digit leads.

Forward Samuel Idowu recorded a team-high of 20 points, tying his season and career best. Guard Davauhnte Turner tallied 13 points while forward Mamadou Ndiaye added 10.

All of the top scorers for Iona (8-7, 2-1) notched more 10 points. Ricky McGill led the Gaels with 19 as Schadrac Casimir followed with 18 and TK Edogi with 12.

Enechionyia helped get the Peacocks into rhythm during the opening of the first half with a mid-ranger that set the tone for their first 11 points. Guard Quinn Taylor seemed to be unstoppable after he knocked down three consecutive shots from downtown as Enechionyia extended the lead to 11-0.

After the Gaels got a point, the two teams fought back and forth with the score but Turner stopped all the commotion by draining a contested three-pointer, putting the Peacocks up 20-9 with less than 10 minutes in the half.

Idowu extended SPU’s lead to 23-12 with another three-ball, but Iowa answered back by going on a 10-0 run, trailing just one point at 23-22. Idowu tried to help get the team out of a drought with yet another three but Iona went on to tie the game at 26-26 with just two minutes left in the first half.

Guard Elijah Gonzales broke up the tie with a layup but Iona’s Svandrlik hit a three-pointer, sending Iona with the 29-28 lead into halftime.

Both teams put their foot on the gas pedal during the second half.

The Peacocks regained the lead, 31-29, on the first possession of the half thanks to triple-made free throws from guard Nick Griffin. Iona responded with a three of their own but Taylor drove to the basket to go up once again at 33-32.

Saint Peter’s eventually went on a 20-6 run, after trailing as much as seven points, over nine minutes, putting them up 58-48 with just 4:24 left. Idowu chipped into the run with six points, Ndiaye with five, Taylor with four, guard Cameron Jones with three and Turner with two.

The Gaels managed to overtake the lead by adding 14 more points to the board, leading 62-58 with 1:56 remaining. The Peacocks came close by trailing just two points three times, but Iona secured the lead with a shocking three-pointer and forced steal that transition into a dunk for a 72-65 advantage. 13.3 seconds was left in regulation but SPU didn’t manage to pull through.

The Saint Peter’s men’s basketball team will return home on Sunday, January 7, to match-up against Quinnipiac at 2pm.

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