RIVERDALE, N.Y. - The host Manhattan Jaspers out scored Canisius College 17-1 in the first 4:40 of the second half to stretch a six-point halftime lead to a 20-point cushion en route to a 90-77 victory Friday night in the Draddy Gymnasium in Riverdale, N.Y. The win improved the Jaspers to 20-10 overall and 12-5 in MAAC play, while the Golden Griffins slipped to 5-23 overall and 1-16 in conference action.
Manhattan guard George Beamon scored a game-high 28 points and added 10 rebounds in the win for the Jaspers, while fellow guard Donovan Kates chipped in 18 points and three assists. The Jaspers shot 52.9 percent from the field in the win and 47.6 percent from 3-point land to go with a 39-34 advantage on the glass.
For Canisius, junior Alshwan Hymes tallied a team-high 23 points after he went 9-for-16 from the floor and 5-for-11 from 3-point range. Fellow junior Gaby Belardob was good for 19 points, six rebounds and two assists and junior Harold Washington chipped in 12 points and two steals. The Griffs shot 44.3 percent from the floor and 42.1 percent from behind the arc in the loss, which snapped the Blue and Gold's two-game road winning streak over Manhattan, dating back to the 2009-10 campaign.
Manhattan led the game 42-36 at the intermission and broke the contest wide-open with a 17-1 run, with Beamon and Kates accounting for eight of Manhattan's points during the decisive run. From there, the Jaspers stretched their hold to as many as 24 points midway through the second half as Beamon took a pass at the top of the key and drove the lane to lay one in to make the score 77-53 with 8:04 left to play in regulation time.
"For a six-minute span in the second half, Manhattan went on a tear and broke the game open," Canisius head coach Tom Parrotta said. "Manhattan is a very deep and talented team. I thought we played a good half of basketball in the opening period. We broke their pressure, moved the ball around, but the bottom line is that they had more weapons than we did tonight and they made plays when they needed them. I thought George Beamon was the difference tonight. He just took the game over. I give credit to our guys because they never quit, and it is apparent that the work they've been putting in during practice is resulting in some positive things on the court. Against Manhattan's 40 minutes of pressure, we got the shots we wanted, and they can force you into turning it over, but we only had 11 turnovers tonight. We are excited to get right back at it and prepare to win at Siena Sunday afternoon."
In the first half, Manhattan led by six points at 17-11 just six minutes into the game before the Blue and Gold ripped off five-straight points to cut the hold to one point at 17-16 with 12:17 left before the break following a jumper by Washington and a 3-point field goal by Hymes. The game would go back-and-forth for the next few moments before Manhattan reserve Ryan McCoy drained a triple from the left corner to give Manhattan a six-point cushion with 8:21 left before the half. Manhattan's lead never dipped below four points for a better part of the first stanza, but the Griffs finally got within three at 37-34 with 2:22 left in the opening half thanks to two made free-throws by Washington. From there, the Jaspers outscored Canisius 5-0, with freshman Emmy Andujar's trey with 13 ticks left on the clock sending the teams into the locker room with Manhattan holding a 42-36 advantage.
Canisius will close out the 2011-12 regular season Sunday, Feb. 26, at Siena. Tipoff in the Times Union Center is set for 2 p.m., and the game can be seen live on Time Warner SportsNet.Game Notes: This was the 80th all-time meeting between these two schools, with Manhattan holding a 48-32 lead in the series... The Griffs entered this game with a two-game road winning streak in the series, the program's first since the 1993-94 and 1994-95 seasons... Canisius has never won three-straight games in the Draddy Gymnasium... Hymes' five 3-point field goals in the game gives him 80 this season, which sets a new school record for 3-pointers made in a single-season... Hymes now has 171 career 3-pointers, which leads all active Canisius players and ranks among the top-three among active players in the MAAC... Belardo is averaging 14.8 points per game in four career contests against the Jaspers... Washington now has 458 points this season, which stands as the most points for a Canisius player in his first year with the program since "Sugar" Ray Hall scored 454 points in his rookie season of 1981-82... Sophomore Reggie Groves came off the bench and scored eight points for the Griffs in the losing cause, the most points for him since he scored eight points at South Dakota Dec. 18.