Here’s some good, some bad and some ugly, from Saturday’s 81-73 loss to Siena.
Ryan Olander had his first career double-double with 14 points and 10 rebounds.
Yorel Hawkins scored 20 points and had 6 rebounds and 2 blocks.
Mike Evanovich came off then bench and hit 3 three-pointers, finishing with 11 points in 19 minutes.
Derek Needham had 16 points, 7 assists, 5 rebounds and 4 steals.
Anthony Johnson scored 12 points and had 6 rebounds and 2 blocks.
A decent crowd of 3,384 showed — despite the students still being on winter break (The MAAC ought to be given a swift kick in the keester for scheduling this game while the students are out of school).
Needham, Johnson, Hawkins, Evanovich and Olander were the only Stags that scored.
Olander had 13 points and eight rebounds at the half. He managed just 1 point and 2 rebounds in the second half.
Needham had 8 turnovers.
Siena went 9 of 18 from behind the 3-point arc. Ouch.
Siena’s big 4 of Ryan Rossiter, Alex Franklin, Edwin Ubiles and Clarence Jackson combined to score 70 of the Siants 81 points.
Lyndon Jordan (24 minutes) and Colin Nickerson (16) did absolutely nothing. They went a combined 0-for-6 shooting, combined to grab 4 rebounds and combined to make 4 turnovers.
Jamal Turner (6 minutes) and Sean Crawford (3) also did nothing. Not that they had a chance to.
Shimeek Johnson barely played a minute. heck, if you’re not going to play him, might as well give Sean Grzeck a chance.
Siena coach Fran McCaffrey
“It was a heck of a win for our team. We just beat a very, very good team. A phenomenally well-coached team. We clearly had to play better in the second half, even though we were up one at halftime. They shot 57 percent in the first half half and you’re walking off the floor at halftime thinking ‘I can’t believe we’re up one.’ Obviously Clarence Jackson was the reason for that. We were out of synch in the first half, we didn’t make the kinds of plays defensively you have to make to beat a team of this caliber in the first half but in the second half we were substantially better at both ends of the floor.
(impressions of Needham)
“They were the same as they were when I watched him on film a million times, he phenomenal. He’s got tremendous poise, he makes shots, he makes plays, he defends, he’s get terrific stamina. I can’t imagine there are as many freshmen in the country that are having the impact he’s having.”
(thoughts on the Stags?)
“Fairfield’s one of the best team we’ve played all year. They’re one of the best teams I’ve watched on film because they can beat you a number of different ways. They have size, they have speed, he’s got obviously a much deeper bench they he had last year. I’ve said since I came into the league, Ed ‘s as good a coach as I’ve coached against because he runs all kinds of things offensively, he mixes defenses, he keeps you on your toes and they force your team to make plays. Today, we made the plays.”
“First things first, I’m (blanking) ticked off that we lost a home. That’s the first thing I’m (ticked) off about. We lost at home. I don’t care how you play or who you play, you do not lose at home. I don’t care if you’re playing the Globetrotters or the Boston Celtics, you have to win at home. That being said, the game was lost in turnovers. We missed shots and turned the ball over in critical, critical situations. Turnovers and I believe, second shots that led to points. That’s the game, there’s 35 points on turnovers and second shots. That’s it. There’s really nothing else to talk about. Losing at home, second shots and turnovers. Clean that up and you’ll have a great opportunity to win. The bottom line is we (blanking) lost at home. That’s the bottom line. I’m sorry about the language, it just kills me to lose at home.”
(Possible nerves because this was a ‘statement’ game)
“Hell, no … statement game? This wasn’t a statement game this was a league game. Statement games are when you play for all marbles. That’s a statement game to me. A statement game when you win when it matters most. We showed our inexperience with the turnovers and they showed their experience with their poise. Thirty five points on second chance points and turnovers. That’s the game. I’m more (ticked) off because we lost at home. That point will be driven home to our players until they’re blue in the face. Do not lose at home. That point is very, very critical to our program.
(45-44 at the half. That’s the pace you wanted?)
“Absolutely, that’s the style I wanted. You think I recruited these athletes to play in the halfcourt? We have to be able to guard some guys. We want to play at a good tempo. I thought the tempo was great. They normally make 4 3’s a game, they go 9 for 18. The kid (Jackson) got hot, he got open for a couple of shots. Guys that uncharteristically don’t make 3’s, the kid Wignot comes in the game and makes a 3, he plays eight minutes. They’re best players beat us. I thought we did a great job in transition defense and we did some good things in the game, did some very good things in the game, we just didn’t do the little things to help us get a W.
(thoughts on Needham’s play)
“I thought Derek played an OK game, he just didn’t keep it simple when we needed him to. That’s maturity. I want Derek Needham on my team more than any player this league has. Anyone. The last four years I’ve been here, he’s our guy and we’re going to believe in him and he’s going to do great. He just didn’t have a great decision making game. Other than that 6 of 11 (shooting) 2 of 2 from three, 2 of 3 (free throws), 5 rebounds, 7 assists, 16 points. The next thing you’re going to ask me is put a cape on him and ask him to carry Fairfield University on his back. The kid played a great game. He’s probably playing against one of the best point guards (Ronald Moore) in the country, who by the way, we did a great job on today. Unbelievable job. He’s not going to have a cape on every night.”