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Bryant knocks off Fordham for first win over A10 foe

Kelsi-Mariah Oresman/Bryant Athletics
Kelsi-Mariah Oresman/Bryant Athletics

BRONX, N.Y. – Freshman Benson Lin (New Taipei City, Taiwan) scored a game-high 15 points and the Bryant University men's basketball team held Fordham without a made field goal for nearly 15 minutes as the Bulldogs earned the program's first win over an Atlantic 10 opponent with a 69-61 victory Tuesday afternoon at Rose Hill Gym.

Senior Adam Grant (Franklin, Va.) added 12 points and freshman Michael Green III (Bronx, N.Y.) chipped in 11 – all in the second half – as the Bulldogs were victorious in head coach Jared Grasso's return to Fordham.

GAME INFORMATION
Bryant 69, Fordham 61
Records: Bryant (7-4), Fordham (5-4)
Location: Rose Hill Gym (Bronx, N.Y.)

KEY MOMENTS

  • Bryant trailed by 10 in the first half before evening the contest at 34 in the final minute of the half.
  • A 9-0 run turned a seven-point deficit early in the second half into a two-point lead at 43-41 with 13:50 to play.
  • The Bulldogs limited the Rams to two points in a stretch of nine-plus minutes to take control of the contest. Bryant held Fordham without a field goal from the 17:20 mark until 2:21 remaining in the game.

HOW IT HAPPENED

  • A 9-2 Bryant run capped off by three Grant free throws put the Bulldogs in front by one at 11-10 with 14:40 to play in the opening half.
  • Fordham led by as many as 10 and had a 34-26 advantage before an 8-0 run completed by a layup from sophomore Patrick Harding (Fairfield, Conn.) tied the game at 34 with 51 seconds to play in the half.
  • A steal and dunk by the Rams in the closing seconds of the half gave Fordham a 36-34 lead at the break.
  • Fordham scored the first five out of the half before Bryant scored the next nine, with a three from Green and two free throws from redshirt-junior Hall Elisias (Valley Stream, N.Y.) giving Bryant a 43-41 lead with 13:50 to play.
  • Fordham tied the game before a block from Elisias and transition three from Lin put Bryant back in front 46-43, prompting a Ram timeout with 9:03 to go.
  • Two baskets from Green followed by a layup from Lin in transition gave Bryant a 58-49 cushion with 2:56 to go.
  • After a three from Grant and layup by Ndugba, Bryant closed out the game with a 6-for-6 showing at the line in the final 37 seconds.

STATS

  • Lin was 5-of-11 from the floor and 3-of-6 from three while adding four assists.
  • Grant went 7-for-7 at the line for the majority of his 12 points.
  • Green scored all 11 of his points in the second half in his first collegiate game in the Bronx.
  • Harding grabbed 11 rebounds to help Bryant to a 42-31 advantage on the glass. The Bulldogs outrebounded the Rams 27-17 in the second half.
  • Elisias notched three blocks to give him 31 for the season, tying him for ninth in Bryant's D1 career history.
  • Bryant was 19-for-24 at the free throw line in the win.
  • The Bulldogs held the Rams to 23.3% from the field and 1-for-13 from three in the second half.

GAME NOTES

  • Grant has scored 10-plus points in all 11 games this year and 76 times as a Bulldog.
  • Bryant received 26 of its 69 points from freshmen with 19 of its 35 second-half points provided by the duo of Lin and Green.
  • Tuesday's game was Coach Grasso's first at Rose Hill Gym since serving as Fordham's interim head coach for 23 games during the 2009-10 season. Grasso's first career win, a 93-77 Fordham victory over Stony Brook, was achieved 10 years ago this week.
  • Bryant improves to 1-0 all-time against Fordham and 1-2 vs. the Atlantic 10.

UP NEXT
The Bulldogs will have their longest layoff during the 2019-20 season as the team takes a break from game action for finals. Bryant returns to play Saturday, Dec. 21, when the Bulldogs face Dartmouth in Hanover, New Hampshire. The noon tip can be seen locally on NESN and outside of New England on ESPN+. 

Bryant Men's Basketball 2019-20 season tickets are available by clicking HERE. The Bulldogs will return home Thursday, Jan. 2 vs. Saint Francis U in Bryant's NEC opener.

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