Canisius (21-11) vs. Iona (21-9)
Date: Sunday, March 9, 2014
Time: 4:30 p.m.
Location: Springfield, Mass. | MassMutual Center
TV/Online: ESPN3 and WatchESPN
Talent: Doug Sherman (p-x-p) and Rob Kennedy (color)
Live Audio: AM-1400 WWWS (Buffalo) & GoGriffs.com
Talent: Jay Moran (p-x-p) and Mike Scott (color)
Live Stats: Available through MAACSports.com
Twitter: @Griffs_MBB | #Griffs; #MAAC14; #MAACHoops
The Canisius men's basketball team makes its first appearance in the MAAC Tournament semifinal round on Sunday at 4:30 p.m., when the Golden Griffins take on top-seeded Iona in the MassMutual Center in Springfield, Mass. This will mark the seventh all-time MAAC Tournament contest between these two schools, with each program claiming three wins.GRIFF-INFO
• Canisius makes its first appearance in the MAAC Tournament semifinals since 2002 today when the team plays top-seeded Iona at 4:30 p.m., in the MassMutual Center.
• The Griffs enter today’s game with a 21-11 overall record after the team defeated Siena 71-65 Saturday in the quarterfinal round. That win snapped the program’s four-game MAAC Tournament losing streak.
• Canisius and Iona split the regular-season series this year, with each team winning on the road. The Griffs’ win at the Hynes Center Jan. 17, ended the program’s six-game road losing streak in the series.
• Canisius senior Billy Baron had a team-high 17 points to go with six assists and five steals in the win over Siena on Saturday. Baron was named the 2014 Pepsi MAAC Player of the Year on Friday night, making him the third Canisius player in school history to earn the award.
FAST BREAK POINTS
• Canisius senior Billy Baron leads Canisius and ranks third in the nation with his 24.2 points per game scoring average.
• Baron enters today’s game against Iona averaging 24.0 points, 7.0 assists and 4.6 rebounds per game in five career meetings with the Gaels.
• Canisius senior Chris Manhertz was credited with his 13th career double-double in the win over Siena on Saturday after he had 10 points and 11 rebounds. He did not play when Iona beat the Griffs 101-91 in Buffalo on Feb. 9.
ABOUT THE GAELS
• Iona, the 2014 MAAC regular season champion, comes into today’s game with a record of 21-9. The Gaels have won 13 of their last 14 after Canisius beat Iona in New Rochelle, N.Y., Jan. 17.
• The Gaels lead the MAAC and rank fourth in the nation in scoring average at 84.3 points per game.
• As a team, Iona has scored 75 points or more in six-straight games.
• Senior Sean Armand leads the team in scoring average with 17.8 points per game. Armand is one of five Iona players averaging in double figures this season.
• Armand (89 3-point field goals) and sophomore A.J. English (77 3-point field goals) have combined to make 166 of Iona’s MAAC-leading 314 3-point field goals this year (52.9 percent).
• Junior David Laury ranks third in scoring with his 14.2 points per game and he leads the Gaels in rebounds per game with 7.8. As a team, Iona is good for 33.3 rebounds per game, which ranks 10th in the MAAC.
• Senior Tre Bowman is good for 13.8 points per game this season. He’s shooting 40.1 percent from 3-point land and led the Gaels on Saturday with 28 points as Iona defeated Rider 94-71 in the quarterfinal round.
• Defensively, Iona is giving up an average of 77.6 points per game. That ranks 10th in the MAAC and 326th in the nation.
CANISIUS - IONA SERIES
• This is the 64th meeting between these two schools and Iona leads the series 34-29.
• Canisius and Iona split the regular-season series in each of the last two years, including this season. Both schools earned road wins this season, with Iona taking the game in Buffalo Feb. 9 by the score of 101-91.
• The Griffs’ win at Iona on Jan. 17 snapped Canisius’ six-game road losing streak in this series.
• This will be the seventh time these schools have played in the MAAC Tournament. Each team has three wins, with Iona claiming an 89-85 victory over the Blue and Gold in the 2013 MAAC Tournament quarterfinal round.
MAAC TOURNAMENT TIDBITS
• This marks the 25th year Canisius has competed in the MAAC Tournament where the team boasts a 23-23 record.
• The Griffs snapped their four-game MAAC Tournament losing streak on Saturday with a 71-65 win over Siena. That victory allowed Canisius to advance to the MAAC Tournament semifinal round for the first time since 2002.
• Canisius earned the No. 4 seed in this year’s tournament after going 14-6 in conference play during the regular season. This marks the first time since 1999 that the Griffs are the No. 4 seed in the MAAC Tournament.
• Canisius is now 8-13 all-time in the quarterfinal round of this tournament. Coming into today’s game, the Griffs are 3-4 all-time in MAAC Tournament semifinal round games.
IT HAS BEEN A WHILE...
• Canisius is making its first MAAC Tournament semifinal appearance since March 3, 2002, when the Griffs lost to Niagara 70-60 in Albany, N.Y. Since then, the program has won a total of seven MAAC Tournament contests, including yesterday's 71-65 victory over Siena.
• Since the last MAAC Tournament semifinal appearance for the Griffs, every MAAC team (not counting conference newcomers Monmouth and Quinnipiac) have been to the MAAC Tournament semifinals at least two times each.
• In the 4,388 days since Canisius’ last MAAC Tournament semifinal game, the program has played 367 total contests, the Griffs have had three different head coaches and 34 former players have earned their undergraduate degrees from the College.
• Canisius is 3-4 all-time in the semifinal round of this tournament. The last semifinal win came in 2001, when the Griffs defeated Siena 76-64 to advance to the 2001 title game, where the team lost to Iona That year’s tournament was played in Buffalo, N.Y.