New Rochelle, N.Y. - Scott Machado had 14 points in leading Iona to his third straight with a 75-62 victory over UAlbany on Thursday, Dec. 17 at Hynes Athletic Center.
Iona (7-4) turned a five-point halftime lead into a double-figure margin in the opening minute of the final period. Mike McFadden scored before a steal led to Machado's three-point field goal. Still leading 55-45 with 14:53 remaining, the Gaels broke the game with 12 consecutive points. Trinity Fields, Jonathan Huffman and Rashard McGill each nailed a 3-pointer in that decision run. The Gaels shot 54.7 percent the field, the top mark by a UAlbany opponent this season.
"We didn't help ourselves in the second half," said UAlbany coach Will Brown, whose team committed 11 of its 17 turnovers after the break. "Their pressure wears on you and they are a good team. It took us eight seconds to get across the line, another nine seconds to identify whether it was man, matchup or zone, and then you have less time to attack the defense."
In the first half, each team shot a high percentage as Iona took a 41-36 lead to the break. UAlbany (4-8) wiped out an early 8-2 deficit behind the play of Will Harris, who had 16 of his 20 points in the opening period. Harris canned a three-point field goal to draw his team even at 12 apiece and another long-range jumper for a 17-12 margin.
The Great Danes, who shot 50 percent in the half, upped their advantage to 26-16 as Harris ended a string of seven unanswered with a 3-pointer from the right wing. The Gaels later countered with a run of eight straight to take a 30-28 lead on Machado's driving layup. After UAlbany's Brett Gifford scored in the lane, Iona broke the deadlock with 11 of the game's next 14 points. Jermel Jenkins ignited the outburst with a three-pointer from the right corner. Jenkins, a sophomore guard who came off the bench, added three more baskets that built the lead to 41-33. The Gaels were an impressive 61 percent from the floor, on 19-of-31 shooting, in the period.
"We handled things well in the first half, but then we were careless in the second half," explained UAlbany's Tim Ambrose, who totaled 14 points, six rebounds, four assists and a career-high six steals. "They made us pay for every mistake we made."
Iona's Jonathan Huffman, a 7-foot senior who transferred from Louisville, finished with nine points and six rebounds. Machado added six assists and five steals to his scoring total. The Gaels were coming off an 82-73 victory over Big East Conference member Providence on Dec. 12.
"It was an uptempo game with a lot of running," said UAlbany's Harris, whose team has lost five of its last six outings and seemed to slow down against the defensive pressure in the final period. "They have a lot of ball-screen action and the combination of all those factors makes you exert a lot of energy."
Courtesy: UAlbany Sports Information
Thursday, December 17, 2009
Posted by BRE at 6:24 PM