POUGHKEEPSIE, N.Y. – Tom Parrotta and his Canisius Golden Griffins might question whether they suffer from deja vu. If so, head coach and players hope to find their elixir soon.
For the second road game in a row, the Griffs outscored their opponents after half-time. Unfortunately, the rally proved too little after nearly burying themselves in a first-half gully.
Gaby Belardo scored 19, including six straight in the opening moments of the second half, but the Canisius Golden Griffins fell in Metro-Atlantic Athletic Conference play to the Marist Red Foxes, 74-64.
Belardo’s lay up in transition helped trimmed Marist’s 19-point halftime lead to 47-35 just three minutes into the latter stanza. After Marist opened the half with a bucket, Belardo found Alshwan Hymes for a 3. Hymes returned the favor forty seconds later after Belardo corraled an offensive rebound and reset the play. The sophomore from Dewitt, N.Y. found his teammate and Belardo connected with the three-ball. Belardo hit a free throw next time down the floor, and Robert Goldsberry made a steal and led the red-shirt sophomore into the open for another deuce.
Canisius employed a four-guard lineup throughout the second half.
Frehsman, Eric Kindler connected twice from behind the arc. His second from the left corner, made it a 59-47 game with ten minutes remaining. Belardo hit from long range on the next possession and the Griffs trailed by ten. Tomas Vazquez-Simmons grabbed an offensive rebound, converted the put-back, and Canisius tralied 60-52.
But the Griffs came no closer.
Marist put together a pair of 13-0 runs in the first half to grab a 23-point lead. The Griffs committed 13 turnovers in the half, and the Red Foxes took advantage with 11 points off those miscues. Marist took advantage of the momentum hitting 50 percent from the field including 5-12 from behind the arc.
Conversely, Canisius hit just 10-30 shots from the field before the break. Marist used the transition points for a 22-6 advantage in the paint for the first twenty minutes of play. For the second game in a row, Canisius surrendered 45 points before heading to the locker room.
“We have to do a better job of playing hard at the beginning of games,” associate head coach, Rob Norris said. “We’re proud of the guys for coming back, but we can’t get to that point.”
Marist held a 24-14 advantage in rebounds at half and finished the game with a 43-40 edge on the boards.
“When you lose those 50-50 balls, especially in league play, you’re not going to win basketball games,” Norris noted.
Hymes added 14 points with four from behind the arc. Goldsberry led the Griffs with four assists. Greg Logins corraled nine rebounds. Vazquez-Simmons grabbed seven, and Frazier had six boards.
Sam Prescott and R.J. Hall led Marist with 13 apiece. Candon Rusin and Jay Bowie each contributed a dozen. Anell Alexis chipped in with 10. Prescott grabbed 10 rebounds, and Bowie had nine.
Rusin’s production all came in the game’s first 16 minutes. The sophomore from Surf City, North Carolina was ejected from the game after throwing a punch at Goldsberry.
Marist improves to 2-0 in league play. Canisius falls to 0-2 in the MAAC and 3-4 overall. Canisius continues its road trip, Tuesday when the Griffs travel west for a tilt with the Coyotes of the University of South Dakota.
Canisius returns home Friday when the St. Francis (NY) Terriers come to the KAC.
Marist visits the Koessler Athletic Center on Friday, February fourth.
Canisius made national news when Frank Turner earned his master’s degree after four years of work at the Buffalo campus. Current seniors, Julius Coles, Frazier, Goldsberry, Logins and Vazquez-Simmons all completed their four-year degrees last spring. The five seniors are in line to get their master’s by the end of the next semester.