Bonnies Win Again To Set Up Showdown With No. 16 Rhode Island
PHILADELPHIA — Jaylen Adams and Matt Mobley continue to amaze.
The duo combined for 56 points to lead St. Bonaventure to its seventh straight win, a 79-68 decision at La Salle on Tuesday night.
The win improves the Bonnies to 19-6 overall and 9-4 in the Atlantic 10 while La Salle slumps to 10-16, 4-9.
Mobley scored 30 points and Adams totaled 26 as the pair was lethal, going 9 for 17 from 3-point range together.
After a bit of a slow start, the Bonnies seized control at the end of the first half. The Explorers held a narrow edge for much of the opening 10 minutes, and the score remained within three points until the four-minute mark of the first half.
Then, with the Bonnies’ lead at just 29-26, the visitors earned some breathing room before the break. St. Bonaventure eventually pushed its lead to as many as 11 points at 39-28 with 1:09 remaining until halftime, ultimately taking a 42-32 advantage to intermission. Mobley paced the Bonnies in the opening half, making 6-of-10 shots for 18 points. Adams added 12 in the first half.
La Salle would not go away easily, however.
Midway through the second half, the Explorers had life, cutting the Bona lead to 57-54 at the 9:20 mark.
St. Bonaventure responded behind Mobley and Courtney Stockard.
Mobley made a deep 3-pointer with 9:10 to play to end the Explorers’ surge, then Stockard drove and scored. After two La Salle free throws, Mobley drained another trey and Stockard went coast-to-coast for a dunk that put the Bonnies back in control at 67-56 with 7:22 left.
La Salle cut within single digits once more, getting to within 74-66 with 3:30 to play. The combination of Mobley and Adams ended any thoughts of an Explorers rally, however, as a drive of the lane by Mobley for a layup followed by work from the outside by Adams pushed the Bonnies lead back out to 13 with just two minutes remaining. From there the Bonnies never looked back.
Bona’s offense again clicked into high gear as the team shot over 53 percent (30 for 56) from the floor including 10 for 20 from distance with Adams and Mobley combining for nine of those treys and freshman Izaiah Brockington adding a 10th.
The Bonnies outrebounded the Explorers by a 34-26 margin and also dominated the paint, outscoring the hosts inside by a 36-18 margin.
Tuesday’s win sets up the Bonnies for one of the biggest games at the Reilly Center in recent memory as St. Bonaventure will play host to nationally ranked and Atlantic 10 leader Rhode Island on Friday night. That game is set for a 7 p.m. tip-off on ESPN2 in front of a sold-out crowd. Fans are asked to wear white to the game to support the Bonnies “White Out” promotion.
NOTES: Junior LaDarien Griffin returned to the starting lineup after missing last Saturday’s game due to injury. Griffin played 30 minutes, finishing with four points and seven rebounds. … Stockard again played a key role, logging 38 minutes and finishing with 10 points and six boards. … Tuesday’s win broke a tie with the 1982-83 team for the program’s longest Atlantic 10 win streak. … St. Bonaventure broke its jinx at Tom Gola Arena, scoring its first win in the building since 2010. … The Bonnies continued their run of excellence in recent years, surpassing what was already an impressive average win total. During the past six seasons, the Bonnies averaged 18.7 wins per year and now are one win away from their fourth 20-win campaign during that stretch. … Mobley recorded his 12th 20-point or better game of the season. … Adams posted his fourth straight game of over 24 points and now has eight 20-point games in 19 contests this year.
ST. BONAVENTURE (79)
Griffin 2-4 0-0 4, Stockard 5-8 0-0 10, Mobley 11-20 4-4 30, Taqqee 1-3 0-0 2, Adams 9-16 3-4 26, Ngalakulondi 0-1 0-0 0, Ikpeze 1-2 0-0 2, Kaputo 0-0 0-0 0, Brockington 1-2 2-4 5. Totals 30-56 9-12 79.
LA SALLE (68)
Phiri 6-11 5-5 22, Stukes 3-7 2-2 8, Powell 5-15 2-2 15, Deas 2-7 1-2 5, Johnson 3-7 2-2 10, Washington 0-0 0-0 0, Brookins 0-1 0-0 0, Moultrie 3-6 0-0 8, Shuler 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 22-55 12-13 68.
Halftime–St. Bonaventure 42-32. 3-Point Goals–St. Bonaventure 10-20 (Adams 5-8, Mobley 4-9, Brockington 1-2, Ngalakulondi 0-1), La Salle 12-30 (Phiri 5-9, Powell 3-9, Johnson 2-3, Moultrie 2-5, Stukes 0-1, Shuler 0-1, Deas 0-2). Fouled Out–None. Rebounds–St. Bonaventure 31 (Mobley 9), La Salle 22 (Powell, Deas 5). Assists–St. Bonaventure 12 (Adams 5), La Salle 16 (Powell 5). Total Fouls–St. Bonaventure 18, La Salle 12. A–1,312 (3,400).