Edwin Ubiles provided the scoring, and everybody provided the rebounding — for a change — on Tuesday night.
Siena had eight players with at least two rebounds and beat Buffalo, a strong rebounding team, in that category on its way to a 71-60 victory before 5,716 at the Times Union Center.
Ubiles had another solid shooting night and scored 21 points, and Alex Franklin had 15 points and nine rebounds, but he got plenty of help from his friends.
With all five players on the court crashing the boards, the Saints (6-4) were able to get 16 offensive rebounds and 40 total, to 32 for the Bulls (5-4), who came into the game averaging almost six more rebounds per game than their opponents.
Siena scored the last eight points of the first half to take a 33-22 lead, and Buffalo never got closer than nine of the lead the rest of the way.
“I think we all took it personally, as a man, to have five guys go in there and help our big guys out,” Ubiles said. “That’s what we normally want to do, but a lot of us are wing guys. We’re so anxious to get the ball out on the wing and run. But you can’t get the fast break going unless you get the ball first. That’s been a problem for us lately, so we wanted to correct that against a great rebounding team.”
“You can’t just rely on two guys,” Siena head coach Fran McCaffery said. “Alexander and Josh [Duell] were terrific, but you look up and down, and a lot of guys had two and three. That’s how you outrebound teams.”
Clarence Jackson got the 8-0 run started with a steal and a layup, Franklin scored on an assist from Jackson, then gathered in a flip pass over the shoulder of Kenny Hasbrouck for another layup.
Ubiles finished the scoring stretch with another layup.
The Saints got a chance to take the last shot of the half, but Ubiles dribbled into a double-team in transition and was called for a travel with 30 seconds left.
That set off McCaffery, who stepped onto the court during the dead ball and screamed at Hasbrouck, who had rebounded a three-point miss by Schenectady High graduate Andy Robinson, and fired an outlet pass ahead to a sprinting Ubiles.
“The reason I was so upset was it was the exact same thing that happened in the Albany game,” McCaffery said. “It shouldn’t have happened the first time, but it certainly shouldn’t have happened again.”
“Guys not knowing time and score, which is something we work so much on in practice, it’s frustrating for a coach to have to repeat over and over, because you never know down the line when it could cost us the game,” point guard Ronald Moore said.
It was merely a fly in the ointment.
Buffalo hung around in the first nine minutes of the second half before Siena used a 10-4 run to take a 55-40 lead with 6:28 left.
The Saints got into the free throw bonus with 11:02 left, and after Ubiles made two free throws, he blocked a shot to start the break and finished it with a banking jumper on a pass from Hasbrouck, then made a breakaway dunk after Duell dove out of bounds to save it to Moore.
Siena got into the double bonus and made 10 of 13 free throws down the stretch.
“We took them out of it,” McCaffery said. “I never felt like the game was ever in doubt. I thought we outplayed them start to finish.
“We started off the game great, and from there we just wanted to keep the lead and extend it,” Ubiles said. “We didn’t lose focus and didn’t let these guys back in the game. That’s what was good about this game tonight.”
“We turned it over when they weren’t pressing, too, so . . . we just didn’t have the energy,” Buffalo head coach Reggie Witherspoon said. “I was surprised at our lack of energy. In the meantime, I give Siena credit. They had energy, and our response to it was not good.”
Robinson, a senior guard, had five points, three assists and three rebounds in his homecoming game.
Rodney Pierce led the Bulls with 15 points, followed by Vadim Fedotov with 13.
Moore scored 12 for Siena, and Hasbrouck had 10 points on 3-for-11 shooting and five assists.
“A lot of the other guys, they certainly have more space because they’re [Siena opponents] going after Kenny,” McCaffery said. “The beauty of Kenny’s game tonight was how aggressive he was driving the ball. He was right in the middle of us getting into the bonus and then the double bonus. It’s hard to catch a team when they have a lead down the stretch and you’re in the double bonus. We made a bunch of free throws there at the end.”
Watt 1-3 0-0 2, Betts 4-9 0-0 10, Alston 2-3 0-0 4, Pierce 5-10 2-2 15, Gamble 2-7 0-0 4, A. Robinson 2-7 1-1 5, Mulkey 1-2 0-0 3, Smiley 0-5 0-0 0, Fedotov 6-9 1-1 13, Boyer 0-4 0-0 0, Laleye 0-0 0-0 0, Boudreau 2-3 0-0 4. Totals: 25-62 4-4 60.
Rossiter 1-5 1-3 3, Franklin 7-9 1-4 15, Ubiles 8-13 3-4 21, Moore 3-8 4-4 12, Hasbrouck 3-11 3-4 10, Downey 0-1 0-0 0, Duell 2-2 1-2 6, Jackson 1-5 0-0 2, Wignot 1-2 0-0 2, Priestley 0-0 0-0 0. Totals: 26-56 13-21 71.
Halftime: Siena 33, Buffalo 22. Three-point goals: Buffalo 6-23 (Betts 2-6, Pierce 3-5, Gamble 0-1, A. Robinson 0-2, Mulkey 1-1, Smiley 0-4, Boyer 0-4); Siena 6-16 (Ubiles 2-4, Moore 2-3, Hasbrouck 1-3, Downey 0-1, Duell 1-1, Jackson 0-3, Wignot 0-1). Rebounds: Buffalo 32 (Betts 7); Siena 40 (Franklin 9). Assists: Buffalo 16 (Pierce 6); Siena 17 (Moore 8). Total fouls: Buffalo 23; Siena 12. Attendance: 5,716.
Categories: College Sports