ST. BONAVENTURE, NY – It was not quite the start the St. Bonaventure men’s basketball team envisioned for its centennial season.In the team's first game of the 2019-2020, the Bonnies lost, 65-53,to Ohio University on Tuesday.
St. Bonaventure (0-1) struggled to shoot the ball the entire game as Ohio’s defense kept them at just 36% from the field and 18.5% from three.
The Bobcats (1-0) shot very well from the field at 47% and 36% from deep.
It was that poor shooting that prevented SBU from gaining momentum and going on a run.
Ohio on the other hand was able to do just that. In the first half, the Bonnies pulled within two three times before Ohio would go on small scoring spurts.
This included a 6-0 run with just over 15 minutes to go that increased their lead to eight.
At the half, St. Bonaventure trailed 32-25.
In the second half, SBU was unable to prevent Ohio from getting in the lane for easy buckets. This also allowed the Bobcats to kick the ball out for open three point shots, as the Bonnies defense continued to struggle.
After SBU cut the lead to two again, Ohio went on a 9-0 run to go up 11.
Ohio would stretch the lead to as much as 16. From there, they would take it and never look back.
The Bobcats were led by Jordan Dartis who had 19 points, including 10 in the second half.
St. Bonaventure failed to have any player step up, something that Schmidt knew hurt them.
“We’re shooting 4-22, it’s tough. Your better players have to play well and those guys struggled tonight,” he said.
Among those players were Kyle Lofton, who shot just 3-11. The preseason second-team all-Atlantic 10 pick also committed three turnovers
Another negative to Schmidt’s team was losing last season's A-10 All-Rookie selection Osun Osunniyi.
Osunniyi was helped off the court by trainers with an injury teh extent of which has not yet been disclosed.
While there were many downsides to the game. Schmidt did find some good in the performance by his young squad, which is also a challenge the team must face.
“We had 37 rebounds and 16 offensive rebounds and we out rebounded them so that’s a positive,” Schmidt said.
“It’s never good to be young, but that’s just the way it is. We have to overcome that and we need to make the plays when we need to make the plays,” he added.
Newcomer Alejandro Vasquez also had a strong game, leading SBU with 12 points to go along with four rebounds.
The Bonnies next game is at home on Friday as they take on defending America East champion Vermont. Tip-off is set for 7 p.m.
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