Courtesy of GoGriffs.com
BUFFALO, N.Y. — Five Canisius players scored in double-figures, led by senior Jermaine Crumpton and his game-high 23 points, and Golden Griffins’ defense held visiting Monmouth to just 34.6 percent from the field and 25 percent from 3-point land in the game’s second half en route to a 94-79 victory Sundayafternoon in the Koessler Athletic Center. The win moves Canisius to 11-8 overall and 5-1 in MAAC play, while the Hawks slipped to 5-12 on the year and 1-4 in conference action.
Crumpton scored his 23 points after he went 6-for-14 from the floor, 3-for-4 from 3-point land and 8-for-9 from the free-throw line. He also added five rebounds, an assist and a steal in 33 minutes of action. Sophomore Isaiah Reese added 22 points, a team-high seven rebounds, five assists and two steals to the winning effort and freshman Takal Molson was good for 18 points, six boards and match a career-high five assists for the Blue and Gold. Junior Jibreel Faulkner came off the bench and scored a career-high 12 points while sophomore Malik Johnson posted 10 points, three rebounds and two assists for Canisius, which ended the day shooting 44.4 percent from the field and 46.7 percent from 3-point land.
Monmouth led Canisius 34-21 with 6:34 left to play in the first half before the Griffs outscored the Hawks 22-11 to close out the first half, trimming Monmouth’s cushion to 45-43 at the intermission. Of the 22 points scored in the final 6:16 of the opening stanza, eight came from Faulkner. In the second half, a driving lay-up by Reese got the Blue and Gold within one at 49-48, and moments later, a steal by Johnson and a fast-break jam by Crumpton gave Canisius the lead at 50-49 with 17:59 left to play. That was Canisius’ first lead of the game since the score read 11-9 at the 15:59mark of the first period.
Molson made three-straight free-throws to push the Griffs’ cushion to 53-49 with 16:57 left to play, and Monmouth was able to make it a three-point game moments later, but that would end up being as close as the Hawks would get for the remainder of the contest, as Canisius hit back-to-back 3-pointers in the span of 1:10 to take a 59-50 lead with 15:07 showing on the clock. The Griffs’ lead hovered around 10 for a better part of the second half before Monmouth’s Diago Quinn scored a lay-up with 8:16 left to play to make the score 74-66 in favor of the home team. From there. Canisius closed the door on Monmouth, outscoring the Hawks 11-0 over the game’s next 1:50 to take an 85-66 advantage. Junior Jonathan Sanks started and ended that run for Canisius with a pair of 3-pointers. He finished the day with nine points off the bench on the power of three makes from behind the arc.
Senior Austin Tilghman scored a career-high 22 points in the loss for Monmouth. He also grabbed nine boards and dished out five assists. Louie Pillari scored 18 points off the bench for Monmouth as well, as the Hawks ended the game shooting 47.2 percent from the field, fueled primarily by a 59.9 percent effort in the game’s first 20 minutes of play.
Head Coach Reggie Witherspoon’s Postgame Comments
“This was an extremely hard-fought game here today, and give Monmouth credit because they came out to start the game and played extremely hard, so much so that I think it caught us off guard a bit. We turned the intensity up toward the end of the first half and we carried that over into the second half out of the locker room at halftime. I thought Jibreel [Faulkner] gave us a surge of energy off the bench right before halftime, and in the second half, we did a nice job sharing the basketball and we cut down on the turnovers.”
• This was the 10th all-time meeting between the two schools in a series which Monmouth leads 7-3.
• The Griffs improved to 9-2 this season when scoring 70-or more points in a game.
• The 14 makes from 3-point land are the most for Canisius this season. Since the start of the 2012-13 season, Canisius has hit 10-or more 3-pointers 59 times.
• The Griffs went 32-for-40 from the free-throw line in the win, the most makes for the Blue and Gold at the charity stripe since March 3, 2016 in a MAAC Tournament game against Niagara.
• This win marks the first time Canisius has scored a victory when trailing at halftime since Feb. 6, 2017, when the Griffs came back to defeat Saint Peter’s 72-70 on the road.
• Prior to Sunday, the last time Canisius had five players score in double-figures was Feb. 17, 2017 in a road victory at Rider.
• Crumpton’s 23 points marks his seventh game with 20-plus points scored this season. It also extended his string of scoring in double-figures to 15-straight games, dating back to Nov. 24 against Texas State.
• Crumpton also moved into 15th place on the school’s career scoring list, passing former Griffs Larry Fogle and Ed Book. The Niagara Falls, N.Y., native now has 1,328 career points in 107 career games on Main Street.
• Reese’s seven rebounds makes him the team’s leading rebounder in 11 games this season. He also extended his string of at least one steal in a game to 11-straight contests.
• Eleven of Molson’s 18 points came from the free-throw line. He went to the line 16 times. Both of those numbers are career-highs for the Buffalo native.
• Faulkner’s previous career high for points scored in a game was six, which he posted Nov. 13, 2016 in the team’s road loss to Kentucky.
Canisius will head back on the road next weekend for a pair of MAAC games, starting at Manhattan on Friday, Jan. 19. That game will be broadcast live on ESPNU, with tipoff set for 9 p.m. The radio call will be available on Buffalo’s WECK 1230-AM and 102.9-FM, GoGriffs.com and the TUNEIN app.