RIVERDALE, NY – Red-shirt senior forward Brett Bisping poured in a season-high 24 points and added nine rebounds to lead Siena Basketball past Manhattan 81-68 at Draddy Gymnasium. Senior guard Marquis Wright scored 18 points for the surging Saints which have won five of six.
Siena (9-12, 6-4) opened the game on a 17-5 run and led for all but 75 seconds in snapping a six-game losing streak in Riverdale by recording their first win at Draddy Gymnasium since Jan. 24, 2010. The Saints shot well all around, connecting at a 49% clip from the field including 5-11 from three and 22-26 (84.6%) from the free throw line.
Senior Lavon Long stuffed the stat sheet with 13 points, eight rebounds, a season-high six assists and three steals, and freshman guard Khalil Richard added 12 points on a perfect 5-for-5 from the field for Siena which broke free from a five-way tie for third place in the MAAC Standings entering the day, to remain just two games back of current league frontrunner Monmouth at the halfway point of their conference schedule.
Bisping erupted for 16 points during a sensational first half in which the Saints led by as many as 14 points, and took a 39-33 lead at the break. Siena opened the second half in similar fashion to the first, reeling off a 9-2 spurt to build their advantage back to 13 in leading by double digits the rest of the way. The Saints ultimately led by as many as 20 points in winning their second road game in a week, after having opened the season with 10 straight defeats away from home.
Zane Waterman led three in double figures with 14 points and nine rebounds for Manhattan (7-14, 2-8), while reserve Calvin Crawford added 12 off the bench for a Jaspers’ second unit which outscored Siena’s reserves 32-7. The Saints however held Manhattan’s leading scorer Zavier Turner (16.8) to just seven points on 1-9 shooting, as the MAAC’s leading three-point shooter (46.2%) missed all three of his attempts from distance.
Following its busiest conference stretch of the season where it played five games in 11 days winning four, the Saints will now enjoy their quietest time during their MAAC schedule as they play just twice in the next 12 days. Siena returns to action Friday when its host rival Iona at the Times Union Center at 7 p.m.