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ST. BONAVENTURE, N.Y. – Demitrius Conger poured in a team-high 20 points to help St. Bonaventure (5-4) snap Loyola Maryland's eight game win streak in a 76-66 SBU victory at the Reilly Center on Sunday.
The Bonnies scored 14 of the game's first 16 points to open it up and held a double-digit lead for much of the game over a Loyola (8-2) team that had won eight straight. After Andrew Nicholson's layup with 8:34 left however, Loyola held the Bonnies without a field goal for the remainder and mounted a 14-4 run behind Justin Drummond's 13 second-half points to pull closer.
Nicholson shot 5-of-8 from the field and 8-of-9 from the line to total 18 points and six boards, with Da'Quan Cook posting 12 and six, respectively.
Drummond finished with a season-high 26 points and paced the Greyhounds with six straight - free throws, a dunk and a tip in – as Loyola trimmed what had been an 18-point deficit early in the second half to just six, 70-64, with 4:06 left.
The Greyhounds got no closer though, enduring a 3:36 stretch without a bucket and shooting just 1-of-7 from the field as the Bonnies– behind a pair of free throws each from Conger and Nicholson – put the game out of reach from the line.
St. Bonaventure converted 65.2 percent (15-23) from the field in the first half and earned a 15-point advantage after Eric Mosely's 3-pointer at the 5:18 mark. Mosely and Matthew Wright each had nine.
Loyola brought it back to within nine on a triple and traditional three-point play, before Conger laid in two of his 12 in the first half as a part of a 10-2 Bona charge that bridged the intermission and helped build a 48-30 lead in the opening minutes of the final frame.
The Bonnies return to action against NC State (6-4) at Rochester's Blue Cross Arena on Tuesday in a matchup of teams that have not met since the 1970 NCAA tournament when St. Bonaventure advanced to the Final Four.
NOTES: Nicholson played his 100th career game … only one other player in school history has 200 or more career rejections (289, Caswell Cyrus) … St. Bonaventure Athletics, in partnership with University Ministries, accepted donations on behalf of freshman women's basketball player Tatiana Wilson, whose home in Queens was destroyed by fire Tuesday … the community raised nearly $1,700 dollars in addition to clothing, toiletries and school supplies that will be donated to the family … donations will also be collected at the Blue Cross Arena.