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Siena (15-16) vs. Canisius (20-11)



The Sports Network

DATE & TIME: Saturday, March 8, 2:30 p.m. (ET)

FACTS & STATS: Site: MassMutual Center (7,552) -- Springfield, Massachusetts. Television: ESPN3.com. Home Record: Siena 10-4, Canisius 9-3. Away Record: Siena 5-9, Canisius 9-7. Neutral Record: Siena 0-3, Canisius 2-1. Conference Record: Siena 11-9, Canisius 14-6. Series Record: Siena leads, 51-40.

GAME NOTES: Squaring off in the quarterfinals of the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference Tournament, the fifth-seeded Siena Saints go up against the fourth- seeded Canisius Golden Griffins at the MassMutual Center in Springfield this afternoon.

Canisius, which has a record of 22-23 in this event all-time and has a championship stemming from a 52-46 win against Fairfield in the title game back in 1996, has not made it to the final round since 2001 versus Iona. The team lost back-to-back games during the regular season only twice, something it hopes to avoid here, as the Griffs were defeated by Manhattan in the regular-season finale last Sunday by a score of 68-63 at Draddy Gym.

It was not that long ago that Siena was the dominant program in the MAAC, capturing the tournament crown three straight years between 2008-10 and also playing in the championship game in 2007, which is why it is second in the league with five titles and 34 wins in the event over the years. Against Canisius in the tourney over the years, the Saints have a record of 5-2.

Siena owns a 51-40 advantage in the all-time series with the Griffs which stretches back to 1941.

The survivor of this meeting will be back in action on Sunday against the winner of the Rider/Iona contest for the right to play in the title game on Monday night.

If nothing else, Siena closed out the regular season strong with four consecutive wins, all after battling this same Canisius squad to three overtimes before losing, 92-88, back on Feb. 16 and don't think for a moment that the Saints have forgotten that hard-fought setback. As the top 3-point threat for the program, Rob Poole led the offense with 14.6 ppg and was also one of the better rebounders on the unit with 5.2 rpg, which is why he was named to the All-MAAC Third Team. However, not to be overlooked is Brett Bisping who put together several strong efforts down the stretch as he went from 10.4 ppg on the season overall to 12.3 ppg in conference play, not to mention boosting his work on the glass to 6.5 rpg. Marquis Wright, a mere 19.4 percent shooter beyond the arc, accounted for 8.9 ppg, but was far more valued for his passing as he finished first in the league with 171 dishes in his 31 appearances, becoming the first freshman to lead the MAAC in assists in two decades.

Speaking of passing the ball with positive results, Canisius guard Billy Baron was no stranger to such success as he placed second in the league with 161 assists for the Golden Griffins. However, keeping his teammates involved in the action was not the only intention of Baron, the son of head coach Jim Baron, as he finished the regular season ranked second in the league and third in the nation in scoring with 24.4 ppg, not to mention pulling down 5.0 rpg and making 48 steals. A 43.2 percent shooter beyond the arc who is 88.8 percent accurate at the free-throw line Baron, who was named All-MAAC First Team and the MAAC Player of the Year, is the program's single-season record holder for 3-point field goals (98), and is also just the third player in school history to have 150-plus assists in consecutive campaigns.

On the receiving end of some of those assists were Chris Perez and Jordan Heath who contributed 12.4 and 10.5 ppg, respectively, to a Canisius offense that was third in the league with 78.0 ppg and led the MAAC with 74.0 percent accuracy at the charity stripe.

With Baron doing everything he can from all points on the hardwood, it is hard to count out the Golden Griffins, even though their tournament history against Siena is not all that great.

Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Canisius 72, Siena 66

03/08 11:17:35 ET

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Local
Final
UVA 27
UNC 28
Final
NCCU 42
SAVST 14
 
1:00pm Today
CAR
SEA
Final
SFG 11
KAN 4
8:07pm Tonight
SFG
KAN
 
Final
WISC 52
MD 7
Final
SMU 10
MEM 48
Final
ILL 28
MINN 24
Final
RICE 41
UNT 21
Final
NEB 42
RUTG 24
Final
KST 23
TEX 0
Final
ARK 45
UAB 17
Final
UVA 27
UNC 28
Final
EMICH 17
NILL 28
Final
NAVY 41
SJST 31
Final
BST 35
AKR 21
Final
GASTATE 31
GASO 69
Final
TOL 42
UMASS 35
Final
WMICH 42
OHIO 21
Final
COL 37
UCLA 40
Final
UMO 10
KSU 3
Final
WAKE 17
BC 23
Final
BUF 14
CMICH 20
Final
MARS 35
FATL 16
Final
PITT 28
GT 56
Final
SMISS 20
LATU 31
Final
MSU 35
MICH 11
Final
KENT 31
MSST 45
Final
STAN 38
ORST 14
Final
TCU 82
TTU 27
Final
OKST 10
WVU 34
Final
WKENT 66
ODU 51
Final
UTST 34
UNLV 20
Final
MIZZ 24
VANDY 14
Final
UCF 34
TEMPL 14
Final
WASU 37
ARZ 59
Final
CLEM 16
SYR 6
Final
LAMON 18
TXST 22
Final
TXSANANTO 0
UTEP 34
Final
COLST 45
WYO 31
Final
LSU 10
MISS 7
Final
TENN 20
ALA 34
Final
AUB 42
SCAR 35
Final
PSU 24
OSU 31
Final
UTAH 24
USC 21
Final
WASH 10
ARST 24
Final
HAW 18
NEV 26
Final
SJS 1
BUF 2
Final
TOR 1
BOS 4
Final
NYI 7
DAL 5
Final
PHI 4
DET 2
Final
OTT 2
NJD 3
Final
MON 3
NYR 1
Final
STL 3
CHI 2
Final
NAS 0
PIT 3
Final
MIN 7
TAM 2
Final
ARI 2
FLA 1
Final
CAL 1
WAS 3
3:00pm Today
WIN
COL
 
4:00pm Today
LOS
CLB
 
7:00pm Tonight
CHI
OTT
 
8:00pm Tonight
ANA
SJS
 
9:30pm Tonight
VAN
WAS
 
9:30am Today
ATL
DET
1:00pm Today
CIN
BAL
1:00pm Today
NYJ
BUF
1:00pm Today
NEP
CHI
1:00pm Today
TEN
HOU
1:00pm Today
JAC
MIA
1:00pm Today
TAM
MIN
1:00pm Today
CAR
SEA
1:00pm Today
KAN
STL
4:05pm Today
ARI
PHI
4:25pm Today
PIT
IND
4:25pm Today
CLE
OAK
8:30pm Tonight
NOS
GBP
Final
NCCU 42
SAVST 14