Saturday, January 9, 2016

Niagara 52, Saint Peter's 48: Ray Floriani's Tempo-Free Analysis

Niagara head coach Jada Pierce watches her Purple Eagles battle Saint Peter's. (Photo courtesy of Ray Floriani)

Jersey City, NJ -­ In a traditionally tough place for the visiting Purple Eagles, Niagara posted a 52-­48 victory over Saint Peter’s at the Yanitelli Center. Niagara is 2-­3 in the MAAC, coming off another close win earlier in the week over Fairfield. Saint Peter’s (1-­4) defeated Monmouth on Wednesday, but could not build on that conference win. The numbers of note:

Possessions: 61

Offensive Efficiency: Niagara 85, Saint Peter’s 79

Four Factors:
eFG Percentage: Niagara 39, Saint Peter’s 38
Free Throw Rate: Niagara 44, Saint Peter’s 5
Offensive Rebound Percentage: Niagara 32, Saint Peter’s 36

Turnover Rate: Niagara 20, Saint Peter’s 20

What Niagara did well: Close out the game and keep Saint Peter’s off the foul line. The Purple Eagles made the plays in the waning moments, and in a game featuring eight lead changes and five ties, Niagara committed just eight personal fouls on the evening. Saint Peter’s shot just three free throws, the first midway through the third quarter.

What Saint Peter’s did well: Rebound. The Peacocks' slight edge in offensive rebounding percentage was largely due to the inside work of sophomore forward Talah Hughes, with five offensive rebounds.

Leading Scorers and Effectiveness Factors:
Niagara:­ Taylor McKay (15 points, EF 26)
Saint Peter’s­: Hala Mostafa (17 points, EF 36)
Talah Hughes (17 points, EF 27)

EF per minute: Mostafa (36 minutes) and Hughes (27 minutes) both registered a 1.00. McKay of Niagara logged a full 40 minutes, posting the team’s highest EF per minute at .667. Sam Lapszynski scored 12 points and was a factor inside, especially in the fourth quarter. Despite Niagara’s work in the lane, Saint Peter’s enjoyed a 32-­26 advantage in points in the paint.

After three quarters, Niagara held a 34­-33 lead. The offensive efficiency was 77­-76 in favor of Niagara. The fourth quarter saw both offenses get on track.

Fourth Quarter Possessions: Niagara 17, Saint Peter's 15
Fourth Quarter Offensive Efficiency: Niagara 106, Saint Peter's 100

Final Thoughts
“We had looks. Good opportunities at the foul line area and elbows, they didn’t go down. Still, we missed a few things, making mistakes like not boxing out on free throws. We got production from two players, (Mostafa and Hughes) but we need others to step up as well.” ­ Saint Peter’s coach Pat Coyle

“It’s always tough here at Yanitelli Center. They (Saint Peter’s) always play hard, Pat (Coyle) has them competing. It took some grit to pull this out. It all starts with the defense, and we had a good effort tonight.” ­- Niagara coach Jada Pierce

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