WEST POINT — Every time Army could identify the hot shooter, Siena had already moved on to somebody else.
Nick Hopkins, Aidan Carpenter and Colby Rogers each took turns cranking up the offense during a 22-5 run in the second half that gave the Saints control of what turned into their best game of the season, an 83-67 victory over the Cadets at Christl Arena on Tuesday night.
Siena improved to 2-5 heading into the start of MAAC play on Friday by putting together a complete performance, especially in the second half, when the Saints outscored Army 55-34.
Hopkins started the game-turning run with eight straight points, including two three-pointers, then Carpenter took a different tack, driving left for a layup, then driving right for another one on back-to-back possessions for a 53-44 lead.
Then Rogers, who led Siena with 18 points before fouling out late, scored five straight points, including a three, before Anthony Gaines hit a three to punctuate the scoring burst that changed a 41-39 deficit to a 61-48 lead in a span of 6:18.
“We finally had a semblance of a full roster,” Siena head coach Carm Maciariello said after the game on the radio broadcast. “These guys believe. It’s been a culmination and a work in progress since the Georgetown game. Jared Billups off the bench was tremendous, Aidan Carpenter came in off pretty much nothing, just a 20-minute walk-through yesterday … everybody stepped up.”
Carpenter had been out for the better part of the previous four games with a groin injury.
The Saints won comfortably despite foul trouble to senior center Jackson Stormo, their second-leading scorer and leading rebounder.
He picked up his third foul with 7:19 left in the first half and scored just four points in 17 minutes.
Siena made 16 of 17 (94.1%) free throws in the second half and had a strong game from three-point range, making nine of 22 (40.9%).
“We’ve got to clean up some shot selection, but I’ll take this every time,” Maciariello said. “We made free throws in the second half, and we got them on the glass, even though we gave up too many offensive rebounds, which is still a pet peeve of mine. It would’ve been nice to hold them under 60, but scoring 83 on the road is pretty good.”
With Stormo mainly on the bench, Army (4-3) used a 19-3 run to take a 23-13 lead.
The Saints chipped away from there and got within 33-28 by halftime.
The teams traded points in the early stages of the second half before Siena took the upper hand with the 22-5 run.