Courtesy of GoGriffs.com
Canisius sophomore Tre Dinkins came off the bench and scored a career-high 18 points to go with six rebounds, an assist and a steal, as the Golden Griffins earned a 66-62 win over Siena in MAAC men’s basketball action Sunday afternoon at the Koessler Athletic Center. The win moved Canisius to 5-12, overall and 3-5 in MAAC play, while the Saints, who entered the game riding a seven-game win streak, slipped to 12-6 overall and 6-1 in league play with the loss.
Dinkins’ 18 points came after he went 5-for-7 from the field, 4-for-5 from 3-point land and 4-for-4 from the free-throw line in 26:20 of action. Graduate student George Maslennikov posted a career-high with 14 points to go with six boards, and sophomore TJ Gadsden was good for 11 points, five rebounds and a steal. Senior Jacco Fritz added nine points, five rebounds, a game-high six assists and three steals to the winning effort, as Canisius shot 42.3 percent from the floor, made 8-of-19 shots from 3-point range and went 13-for-14 from the charity stripe on the day.
For Siena, three players posted double-figures in the scoring column, led by Michael Baer, who tallied a team-high 15 points to go along with eight rebounds and three blocked shots. Javion McCollum chipped in 13 points and five assists, while Jackson Stormo added 12 points and six rebounds, with six of those points coming in the game’s first 2:17.
Stormo helped Siena jump out to an early 9-2 lead just 3:47 into the contest, but seven-straight points by the Griffs knotted the score at 9-9 with 13:54 left before halftime. Canisius took the lead for good 24-21 with 6:51 remaining in the opening half after Dinkins drilled a 3-pointer off the right wing thanks to a pass from freshman guard Devean Williams. The Blue and Gold took an eight-point lead into the locker room at halftime after redshirt-freshman Tahj Staveskie knocked down a 3-pointer with 51.2 seconds left in the opening stanza. That basket by Staveskie started a 13-4 run that extended into the first five-plus minutes of the second half, as Canisius took a 46-32 lead with 14:05 remaining in the contest.
The Griffs were up 63-54 with 34 seconds remaining in regulation time, but the Saints would not go away, as Siena eventually trimmed Canisius’ lead to just three points at 65-62 with 8.4 seconds left after Michael Eley hit a 3-pointer in transition off a Canisius turnover. Out of timeouts, Siena was forced to foul Fritz in an effort to extend the game, but the senior forward made 1-of-2 free-throw chances to seal the win, Canisius’ sixth-straight home victory over Siena, dating back to the 2016-17 season.
• Sunday was the 110th all-time meeting between these two programs. Siena leads the series 57-52, but the Griffs have won six of the last 10 meetings with the Saints.
• Twenty-nine (29) of the 110 meetings in this series have been decided by five points or less, including both games in this year’s regular-season series. Siena leads that portion of the series 15-14.
• The Griffs’ six-game home win streak over Siena is the Blue and Gold’s longest active home win streak over any MAAC opponent.
• Dinkins’ four 3-point field goal makes are a season-high. He is also the seventh different player to lead Canisius in scoring for a game this season.
• Maslennikov’s 14 points came after he made a career-high six field goals.
• Canisius was without the services of graduate student Jordan Henderson (upper-body injury) and sophomore forward Xzavier Long (illness) for the second-straight game.
Canisius will return to the road next weekend for a pair of MAAC games in the state of Connecticut, starting Friday, Jan. 20, when the team plays at Fairfield. Game time in Fairfield, Conn., is set for 7 p.m., and the contest will be broadcast live on ESPN+. The audio can be found exclusively through GoGriffs.com.
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