PITTSBURGH, PA – The La Roche men's basketball team opened AMCC Conference play with a 103-67 victory over Franciscan University. The Redhawks reached the century mark for just the second time in the past five years and improved to 1-0 in the AMCC.
The Redhawks upped the pace in the first half racing to a 49-33 halftime lead. Franciscan hung around for the first ten minutes but La Roche dominated the boards to close the half on a 29-11 run. RayQuan Phifer was electric in the first with 15 points and 6 rebounds. Ryan Norkus and Arnes Bajogra helped clear the boards with 6 and 5 rebounds. Trell Thomas dished out 4 assists and Evan Bonnaure hit a pair of threes.
La Roche outrebounded the Barons 23-13 in the first half. They also hit 15 of 21 free throws.
As well as the Redhawks played in the first half, they played even better in the second. They shot 59% from the field and assisted on 16 of their 23 buckets. La Roche again controlled the boards pulling down 21 rebounds to Franciscan's 7. Norkus was terrific on the glass especially the offensive end where he kept alive possession after possession.
Thomas led the Redhawks with 14 second half points. He was dangerous from both distance and on the drive where he converted 6 points on his floater. Bonnaure was steady in the second half with 12 points and Norkus had 11.
La Roche had contributions all over the floor in their 103-67 victory. Norkus registered a double-double with 15 points and 10 rebounds. Phifer finished with 20 points, 7 rebounds, 6 assists and 3 steals. Bonnaure scored 20 points (4 for 5 for three) to go along with 6 rebounds and 4 assists. Thomas was excellent off the bench with 19 points, 6 assists and 4 steals.
The Redhawks outrebounded Franciscan 44-20 including 17-4 on the offensive glass.
La Roche will stay in conference on Saturday and welcome Pitt-Bradford to campus. Tip-off is 4pm.