Courtesy of Manhattan College Athletics. ®
By David Cordova
College basketball games in the New York City metropolitan area is something that a lotof locals love to experience. When two schools from the area match up, there are big crowds cheering for their respective sides, and the atmosphere is at an all-time high. On a Friday night in the Riverdale section of the Bronx, Manhattan (0-2) would go up against Hofstra (1-1) in front of a raucous crowd in Draddy Gymnasium. The question heading into the game would be who would come out with the win?
Manhattan 80, Hofstra 68
Early on in the contest, both programs showed their aggressiveness as they traded baskets & played aggressive defense. But Hofstra took over with an 11-4 lead with 15:40 in the first half, due to two three-pointers by freshman Elijah Pemberton. But Manhattan’s freshman Na’Quan Council hit two three-pointers of his own and junior Zavier Peart made a layup to take over the lead 12-11, with over 14 minutes left.
With their tough play in the post, the Jaspers built a nine-point lead, 23-14, with 9:41 in the half. Their size advantage, pressure defense & ball movement helped them maintain the lead during the majority of the first half, which had Manhattan in the lead, 42-34 at the half.
As the second half got underway, the Jaspers continued to apply that pressure defense and maintain control of the game. Manhattan had a twelve-point lead, 51-39, with 15:32 to go in the half. But the Pride would not go down so quickly, as they cut their deficit in half to seven, only trailing 53-46, with 11:50 to go. The Jaspers would continue to stick to their game plan and hold a double-digit lead all the way to the final buzzer, which resulted in their first win of the season.
Peart led Manhattan with 16 points, Aaron Walker, a freshman, added 15 points and six rebounds & junior forward Zane Waterman, added 15 points and eight rebounds. For Hofstra, sophomore Justin Wright-Foreman led with 17 points, Pemberton added 15 points and senior Brian Bernardo added 14 points and five assists in the loss.