The Friars got the victory tonight over the Fairleigh Dickinson Knights 69 (niiccee) to 59 at the Dunkin Donuts Center. PC was led by their leading scorer Alpha Diallo, who scored 20 points and added 9 rebounds. The Crier got two things wrong this evening, the first being a blowout win–PC only won by 10 points–and Maliek White getting more minutes, as he didn’t even play. I can’t be always right all the time. Listen I will be wrong the entire season as long as it means the Crier Prophecy of a Final Four in 2020 comes true, we must think big picture here Friartown. Nevertheless, the Friars did go wire-to-wire in this one and played well overall. Here are my reactions to the W.
That Friar D
The defense of the Friars had been a glaring weakness of the team through the first six games of the season. So far on the young season, the Friars have given up 70.5 points per game on 44.3% shooting from the floor. PC would leave shooters open on poor rotations and allow a handful of straight line-drives to the basket. The first half of this game the Friars were money on defense. They held FDU to 19 points and 26% from the floor on 7/27 shooting. These Friars were more engaging on the defensive end, with better communication on rotations and closing out on shooters. The second half wasn’t as good defensively, as FDU scored 40 points and PC had similar bad habits creep up but beggars can’t be choosers.
Against the Iona Gaels sophomore guard Makai Ashton-Langford mysteriously didn’t play a single minute. We all know that some things were tweeted after the South Carolina game but the following game Makai saw decent minutes against Michigan, so not to play a single second the next game was curious. On this night Makai was the first player to come off the bench and it was Maliek White who didn’t play at all. I really hope our game plan isn’t to switch off backup point guard duties throughout the season but it was Makai’s play tonight that needs to be recognized. Makai finished the game with 6 points, 3 assists, 2 steals, and 2 blocks in 21 minutes of action. Ashton-Langford did have 3 turnovers in the game but one of them was caused by Kalif Young’s rock hands. The backup point guard situation will be worth monitoring throughout the season.