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The Student News Site of Iona University

The Ionian

The Student News Site of Iona University

The Ionian

Men’s basketball, strong at home, stays afloat in MAAC standings

Graduate+Idan+Tretout+recorded+his+second+30%2B+point+effort+on+January+21%2C+shooting+11-for-19
Photo courtesy of IonaGaels.com
Graduate Idan Tretout recorded his second 30+ point effort on January 21, shooting 11-for-19

The Iona University men’s basketball team is off to a 2-3 start in 2024, bringing their season record and winning percentage to 8-10 and .444 overall.  

The Gaels kicked off the new year with a 69-57 loss to Saint Peter’s University on Jan. 5. 7-foot forward, Osborn Shema posted 15 points across 27 minutes in the loss, having scored a trio of three-pointers and two free throws.  

Iona’s next game, against Niagara University in the Hynes Athletic Center, was much more of a battle, as the Maroon and Gold only fell by two points, 75-73.  

Iona had a 10-minute lead in the first half, but six ties and seven lead changes ensued over the game. The Gaels’ most notable stretch came through a 14-2 run in the second half. Freshman Jeremiah Quigley hit a three-pointer to put the Gaels up ten with 15:31 to go.  

Niagara caught fire during the last minutes of the game, scoring on all their three-point shots and giving them a close victory.  

The men’s team bounced back a week later, reaching peak offense in an 87-70 blowout over Mount St. Mary’s.  

Junior Greg Gordon was masterful on the court, achieving a career-high 26 points on 9-of-14 shooting. The evening marked his second straight 20+ point effort. Graduate student Wheza Panzo was one of the other four Gaels to score double-digit points, going 4-for-5 from the three-point line with three rebounds and three steals.  

Iona’s command of the court resulted in their lowest turnover total (five) of the 2023-24 season. Their defense hindered the Mountaineers’ offense as well, forcing 11 turnovers.  

The Gaels’ three-game homestand ended on Jan. 19, during a 70-58 win over Canisius College.  

It was a back-and-forth effort throughout most of the first half, with nearly ten lead changes in the same number of minutes.  

The Griffs’ scoring declined as the game wore on, which could be attributed to a 12-3 Maroon and Gold run in the last 15 minutes. Gordon and Panzo combined for twelve points during this time period, putting Iona up 48-34.  

Iona headed back on the road and dropped their Jan. 21 affair to Quinnipiac University, 91-87. The Gaels, after scoring 13 points in the first three minutes of the second half, held a 14-point advantage at one point.  

Quinnipiac never went away and swarmed Iona with a massive 19-3 run over the final five minutes of the game. They outshot Iona 58.9%-49.2% and went 19-for-27 on second half shot attempts.  

Iona will end this month with a game versus Siena College on Jan. 26, followed by a return to New Rochelle on Feb. 2.  

 

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Robert Hughes
Robert Hughes, Sports Editor

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