Senior Day Sorrows: Bobcats Drop Fourth Straight Game, Losing to Last-Place Canisius


Photo: Kaylyn Terry

Zack Hochberg

The Quinnipiac men’s basketball team fell 72-67 to Canisius on Sunday after coughing up a 16-point halftime lead.

There was a clear difference in momentum for the Bobcats between the first and second half.

“I thought we did a really nice job in the first half of dictating the way the game was played… second half the game got away from us,” Quinnipiac head coach Baker Dunleavy said. “They really upped their level… things were just a little bit easier on them and they stepped it up.” 

Canisius was led by senior guard Jordan Henderson, who torched the Bobcats for 25 points on 9-20 shooting. 

“We tried to keep guard (Henderson) with length and athleticism as much as possible, but the way they move and the way he moves off the ball makes him hard to track,” Dunleavy said.

Sophomore guard Dezi Jones started off carrying a sluggish Quinnipiac offense, scoring four points to go along with three assists, all of which were facilitated from a dominant pick-and-roll game with sophomore forward JJ Riggins, in the first ten minutes. 

The Quinnipiac defense played like a brick wall in the first, holding Canisius to 31.3% shooting from the field while out-rebounding Canisius 24-18. 

Canisius completely flipped the switch, bursting out of the second half gates with a quick 7-0 run to cut the lead to single digits. 

The Bobcats tried to contain Canisius but were simply out-matched. A deep three from Henderson capped off another 7-0 Canisius run to cut the lead down with one. Soon after, junior forward Armon Harried finished a layup at the rim, giving Canisius its first lead of the game with just under five minutes to go.

Quinnipiac sophomore Tymu Chenery knocked down a huge three to cut the Canisius lead down to two with 23 seconds remaining, and then the Bobcats sent senior guard Ahamadou Fofana to the free throw line, who knocked down both free throws to put the lead back up to four. 

On the following possession, Quinnipiac junior forward Brendan McGuire threw the ball away and Canisius escaped with the victory. 

“When you let up on defense and you really depend on the offense, it’s hard to keep up unless you’re perfect. Our defensive effort needed to be better in the second half,” Dunleavy said. 

Matt Balanc led all Quinnipiac scorers with 22 points, including a dunk where it looked like he was trying to rip the rim off the backboard.

Prior to the game, Quinnipiac celebrated graduate students Jacob Rigoni and Kevin Marfo, senior Brendan Martin, student trainer Andrew Weissman, and student manager Zain Ahmed for senior day. 

“Guys that really in their own way have given a lot to Quinnipiac… Guys that are selfless and are all really good ambassadors for the university,” Dunleavy said. 

With its fourth straight loss, Quinnipiac drops to 12-14 overall and 7-11 in MAAC play.

Quinnipiac continues MAAC play on Thursday, March 3, as the Bobcats travel to New Jersey to take on Monmouth.