Isaac Sosa like to shoot the ball from three-point range. He also likes to make those shots.
His first three shots of the contest all went down as Sosa and the Griffs got back on the winning track by defeating Longwood in their first home game in 27 days, 82-54.
Three point shooting was key for Canisius as they shot 46.4 percent for the game. Sosa had a season high 24 points on 8 of 12 shooting. He nailed four trifectas in the first half and four in the second.
As a team, the Griffs shot 13 of 28 from beyond the arch which helped in obtaining the lead early and never giving it up.
“We got the ball down the court,” said Canisius head coach Jim Baron. “We made extra passes and we scored the ball. We didn’t rebound like we rebounded against Syracuse or Marist and that’s going to have to be something we’re more consistent at”
What was even more impressive than Sosa’s 24 points, was that he did it in just 22 minutes of action.
“I told Billy and Harold that I was feeling pretty good,” said the senior guard. “They did they’re job. As teammates their job is supposed to find me, and they did. They always do their job.”
Alshwan Hymes scored 18 points and netted four three pointers
Sosa wasn’t the only Griff getting in on the action. Senior Alshwan Hymes scored 18 points and nailed four threes in the process. Junior forward Chris Manhertz was also in double figures with 13 points to go along with 9 rebounds (5 offensive).
Canisius jumped out to an early 16-6 lead four minutes in but Longwood was able to hang around for most of the first half. A 10-0 run more than midway through the half gave the Griffs a 12 point lead as they led at the break 39-28.
The second half saw the Griffins blow the game open leading by as many as 30 points. They shot 50 percent from the field for the game compared to Longwood’s 34.9 percent
The team’s two leading scorers, Harold Washington and Billy Baron were limited to just eight points between the two. Baron played just 23 minutes and Washington 29. Coach Baron talked about the depth that the team exhibited today as they outscored Longwood’s bench 35 to 4.
“Our bench stepped up and that’s how these guys practice,” said Baron. “We play against each other, we work against each other and they know that when I put them in the game, I expect them to be aggressive.
Longwood did win the rebounding battle by six against the Griffs. Baron said that his players need to concentrate on rebounding but did praise Manhertz after the game saying “that kid tonight, he didn’t want any part of Chris.”
Manhertz scored on six of his eight field goals. Four of those makes were a result of his offensive rebounding.
“I really take a lot of pride on the defensive end especially rebounding,” said the 6’6″ junior. “It’s a very important aspect of the game… for us to win the MAAC championship or to have any success this season, we have to defend and rebound.
This game says wonders about Baron’s squad and how they can get a convincing win at home with their two leading scorers basically taken out of the game and the third inactive (Jordan Heath missed game with ankle injury).
Canisius will fly out tomorrow to Philadelphia to do battle with Temple (8-1). They then travel across the country to take on #21 UNLV om Saturday evening.
Photos courtesy of Tom Wolf Imaging
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