Saint Peter's men's basketball defeated SUNY Old Westbury, 98-51, on Wednesday at the Run Baby Run Arena, pushing the Peacocks' record over the .500 mark.
Saint Peter's (3-2) allowed SUNY to get their only lead of the game with under three minutes of play in the first half as they led 6-4. Saint Peter's proceeded to go on a 9-0 run over the following two and a half minutes and was in control for the remainder of the game.
Saint Peter's was the heavy favorite in this match-up. SUNY basketball is a Division III program, with the team dropping their first two early season games. They were going against a Saint Peter's club that became recognized by the nation for their Cinderella Elite Eight run in the 2022 NCAA Men's Basketball tournament.
Although a heavy underdog, SUNY (0-3) kept the deficit under double-digits for much of the first ten minutes of play, cutting the lead down to six points after SUNY's senior guard Zachary Cummings converted three free throws after getting fouled on a three-point attempt.
Saint Peter's would go on a 13-1 run, with senior guard Alex Rivera scoring seven of his ten first-half points within that run. SUNY's defensive breakdowns and inconsistent shooting allowed Saint Peter's to lead 48-29 after one half of play.
Saint Peter's fast-paced offense and performance off the bench were beneficial in the first half. The Peacocks outscored SUNY's bench by 30 points after 20 minutes of play and out-hustled SUNY with 17 more fastbreak points.
The second half was not much different from the first. Senior guard Isiah Dasher came out of the half, draining his first three-pointer giving him 11 points, striking first out of the break. SUNY's junior guard Carl Damour would respond with a three-point play. After that sequence, SUNY would go scoreless for three minutes, missing jump shots as they could not score inside as Saint Peter's freshman forward Corey Washington would block two layup attempts.
SUNY was in foul trouble during the second half, with two starters going into halftime with four fouls, including sophomore forward Emmanuel Lemba, who would foul out with 5:51 left in the game.
The game was seemingly over as the Peacocks had a commanding lead. They finished the second half scoring 50 points, making it their highest-scoring half thus far this season. Wednesday's game was the third time this season that SUNY has allowed 50 first-half points.
Saint Peter's blowout victory included five players scoring in double-digits, but this was also an example of a team capitalizing on their opponent's inconsistency. SUNY shot 28 percent from the field, while Saint Peter's went 47 percent. Much of the Peacocks' production would come from the bench, scoring 52 points. The bench not only outscored the starters but also outscored SUNY by one point for the duration of the game.
What's Next For Saint Peter's
The Peacocks now look to go two games over .500 on Sunday at 2 p.m. when they host the Fairleigh Dickinson Knights.