Sunday, January 8, 2012

Men's Report: Big Weekend For Siena

Here's another in the series examining men's teams, through the eyes of each's head coach.

The Siena men are now 2-3 in MAAC play and 7-8 overall after a 73-60 upset victory over Fairfield and, then, a 72-60 victory over Niagara Sunday afternoon. The Saints' junior forward O.D. Anosiki posted another double-double (27 points, 14 rebounds). He entered the game leading the nation in rebounding and in consecutive double-doubles.

The Saints shot extremely well over the weekend, hitting 47.2 percent of their shots against Niagara and an incredible 63,4 percent Friday against Fairfield, just three nights after connecting on just 36.5 percent in a 95-59 drubbing at the hands of Iona.

"Fairfield was our best game of the year," said Siena coach Mitch Buonaguro. "We only used six guys (Siena has only seven healthy players who started the year on scholarship), and all six played well. We played zone defensive exclusively. We have to, to keep guys out of foul trouble (Siena entered Sunday's game with the fewest fouls committed of any team nationally).

'What it comes down to is making shots. Against Fairfield we made them and they didn't. We made about 35 percent of our shots against Iona. If we shot 65 percent against them, like we did against Fairfield, now it's a close game."

Buonaguro also had some positive comments for his freshman point guard Evan Hymes, who averages 14.9 points per game and is on pace to be just the second freshman in program history to lead the Saints in scoring (Jack McClinton did it in the 2004-05 season).

"I didn't expect this from him," said Buonaguro. "I expected the quickness, but I didn't expect the scoring and the clutch shots and everything else he has given us in clutch moments. His season so far is a credit to him and his ability."


EdB said...

Steve, I'd like to know why Buonoguro doesn't get another kid or two into these games.... I know he has a 6-main rotation because of injuries (and that it's not a deep team), but even getting 2-3 of the others into the game for a minute can give some of your players a short break. They won't have the ability to run with a lot of teams at the current pace, and the only reason they lost to Fairfield is because the Stags failed to get the ball inside and took a ton of higher-percentage shots.

Steve Amedio said...

Ed -- Only 7 healthy scholarship players, and one (Hopper) isn't ready to play, in the estimation of the coaches. Two other guys on the roster are walk-ons. That's it. That's the entire roster. If any of those three reserves could help the team, they'd be in games. That they're not says it all.
Bottom line ... he doesn't have 2 or 3 other guys. The team can't play up-tempo because they don't have numbers.
Great coaching decision to play exclusive zone and keep his 6-man rotation fresh. The team's 7-8 overall record entering game vs. Rider is far above anyone's expectation, all things considered.
Buonaguro has done a terrific job so far.
And, by the way ... Siena beat Fairfield.