Marist’s Offense Sputters in Big Loss at Manhattan

In its first game of 2022, Marist could not shake its offensive struggles from the end of 2021, losing in a 72-45 blowout to Manhattan at Draddy Gymnasium on Saturday afternoon.

Coming into the game, the Red Foxes held a 30-4 record against the Jaspers and had won seven straight road games. It was only Manhattan’s third win against Marist since 2012.

The Jaspers rode a wave of momentum from a big comeback win against Rider on Thursday night into Saturday afternoon. Marist had not played since a win over Iona on Dec. 20, which was 19 days ago.

It was the second time the Red Foxes had to restart after a lengthy pause. This one resulted from COVID issues among other teams. The layoff might have helped explain Marist’s ice-cold shooting.

The Red Foxes shot 18-for-65 (28 percent) from the field and a brutal three-of-23 from long range. Manhattan played solid defense, but Marist also missed more than its share of open looks. The Jaspers shot 60 percent in the second half, helping them pull away after the Red Foxes who had cut the deficit to seven.

Kiara Fisher has had moments of brilliance this season, but has yet to find some much-needed consistency. She struggled to four points on one-of-ten shooting and gave the ball away five times.

Trinasia Kennedy had a team-high 15 but needed 17 shots to get there. Zaria Shazer added 13 points and eight rebounds.

The Red Foxes continued to struggle with turnovers and balance. They gave the ball away 18 times and did not put any player other than Kennedy and Shazer over five points in the afternoon.

Marist (3-8, 1-2 in the MAAC) got off to a frigid start from the floor. The Red Foxes missed 29 of 35 shots in the first half and failed to connect on any of their 11 attempts from three.

At halftime, Shazer was two-for-eight, Kennedy two-for-seven, and Fisher one-of-six. The Jaspers played strong defense but it was not exactly smothering. A host of different Marist players got clean looks but almost all of them clanked off the rim.

Marist’s only lead came at 2-0 in the early minutes. After that, Manhattan pulled away at a snail’s pace. The Jaspers weren’t setting the world on fire themselves, but the way the Red Foxes were going, every Manhattan basket felt like double.

The Jaspers outrebounded Marist by 13 in the first 20 minutes, leading 26-14 at the break. Manhattan could have easily led by 20 at the intermission, as Marist went on a six-minute field goal drought.

As Marist missed to open the second half, Manhattan’s Courtney Warley continued to bother the visitors with her length. The former MAAC Defensive Player of the Year missed Thursday’s game against Rider because of health and safety protocols. The Red Foxes would have preferred that she sat this one out too.

It wasn’t just Warley that made an impact on the Jasper frontline. Forwards Petra Juric and Jenna Jordan also had important roles in the rebounding battle. Manhattan had consistent size that the Red Foxes could not match across the board.

Marist finally did something other than miss in the early minutes of the second half. Kennedy and Kendall Krick hit their team’s first two threes of the game to make it 33-23 with 6:27 left in the third. A layup from Sam Bailey got Marist to within 36-29 and gave them 15 points in the first 5:10 of the half, after needing 20 minutes to score 14.

The Jaspers didn’t let Marist get any closer, shooting 53 percent in the third quarter. Brazil Harvey-Carr nailed a three to get the lead back up to ten, and Dee Davis drained a step-back jumper to make it 47-34 at the end of the third.

Davis had a game-high 23 points, and Harvey-Carr was right behind her with 22.

Manhattan (8-5, 3-1 in the MAAC) parlayed that momentum into a run that proved to be bone-crushing for Marist. The Jaspers opened the fourth quarter with ten straight points. The spurt was punctuated by a three-point play from Davis, which made it 56-34 with 7:20 left.

Brian Giorgis will try to look for answers on the offensive end as the season continues. The Red Foxes are next in action on Thursday night against winless Siena at the McCann Center.

Edited by Connor Kurpat

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