By CHUCKIE MAGGIO
The St. Bonaventure Bonnies took care of one lacking category on Tuesday night and regressed in a few others.
The law of averages made an appearance at the Albany Times-Union Center as Bonaventure made more three-pointers (10) than it did through two games last week (seven). Mark Schmidt’s trifecta of defense, rebounding and taking care of the ball, however, left much to be desired in a 78-65 loss to Franciscan Cup rival Siena.
Bonaventure allowed Siena to shoot 46.3 percent (25-of-54) from the field, got outrebounded 39-30 and committed eight second-half turnovers. A late Saints surge dropped Bona’s record to 0-3, its worst start to a season since the Anthony Solomon-led 2004-05 squad.
Takeaways from a loss that has heightened frustration in Bona Nation:
Player of the Game: Jalen Pickett, Siena. The Rochester native scored 19 points on 6-of-10 shooting (3-of-5 from three), added six assists, blocked two shots and swiped two steals. After managing just four points in Bonaventure’s 42-point rout last season, he produced a sixth consecutive 15-plus point performance dating back to last season.
Honorable mention: Elijah Burns, Siena (19 points, five rebounds), Donald Carey (19 points, four rebounds, three assists)
Stats of the Game: The Bonnies were outscored 38-18 in the paint and had just seven free throw attempts to Siena’s 29. Bonaventure is 1-3 since the start of last season when it attempts fewer than 10 free throws, 1-6 when its opponent shoots 25 or more freebies.
Stretch of the Game: After a Matt Johnson jump shot cut Siena’s lead to 60-56 with 7:54 to play, Siena ripped off a 9-0 run over the next three and a half minutes. Pickett scored seven of those nine points. Bonaventure’s possessions during that run: turnover, missed layup, missed layup, missed layup, turnover, missed three-pointer.
Quote of the Game: “We’re not getting the ball to the basket,” Bonnies coach Mark Schmidt said. “And it’s not necessarily just having a back-to-the-basket guy; we’ve gotta attack the basket. We’re having a hard time doing that.”