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Hawks Roll to Seventh Straight Win, Beat Quinnipiac 95-76

(Photo by Double G Media)

(Photo by Double G Media)

The Monmouth Hawks came into their home matchup against the Quinnipiac Bobcats as hot as they’ve been all season, having won six straight games. This game was no different. This game was actually pretty close with just over five minutes remaining, as the Hawks held an 81-74 lead, but they would pull away with a 7-0 run over the next two minutes, extending their lead from seven to 14.

Monmouth would eventually go on to beat Quinnipiac by 19, which, interestingly enough, was the same amount of points they beat them by back on December 1. The Hawks are now 17-5 and still on top of the MAAC, while the Bobcats fell to 8-13.

The story for Monmouth was, once again, their strong defense. While the 76 points by Quinnipiac was slightly higher than Monmouth’s season average of 74.1 points allowed per game, this was actually a strong defensive outing for the Hawks. They held the Bobcats to just 36.4% (28-77) from the floor and a miniscule 15.4% (4-26) from three. A few Hawks players got into foul trouble, as both senior center Chris Brady and senior guard Je’Lon Hornbeak both fouled out. This resulted in Quinnipiac taking 29 free throws, but they made just 16 of them for a 55.2% clip.

Both Brady and senior guard Justin Robinson were quite impressive on the defensive end. Brady notched three blocks and was contesting shots at the rim all game. Robinson had three steals and he really set the tone for Monmouth’s perimeter defense.

Robinson was also the star offensively, as he has been all season. Coming into the game just 33 points shy of Monmouth’s career record, he paced the Hawks with 22 points. He wasn’t very efficient, shooting seven of 22 from the floor and a paltry one of eight from three, but he made all seven of his free throw attempts. He really struggled with his shot tonight, but his ability to drive by defenders and finish at the rim is incredible.

Monmouth had a few other strong contributors on the offensive end. Sophomore guard Micah Seaborn had a tough time on Sunday afternoon, shooting just two of 14, but tonight, he hit seven of his 17 shots and scored 21 points, second on the team to just Robinson. Seaborn and Robinson also both led the team in assists with four. Senior guard Collin Stewart and junior guard Austin Tilghman were both highly effective off the bench. Stewart scored 13 points, making three of his six shots, including two of three from deep and five of six from the line. Tilghman was highly efficient, hitting four of his five shots for nine points. He also added three assists.

Quinnipiac’s offensive was led by freshman guard Peter Kiss. He scored 22 points on nine of 18 shooting and nearly had a double-double as he pulled in nine rebounds. Junior forward Chaise Daniels did finish with a double-double, as he had 15 points and 12 boards. The only other Bobcat in double figures was freshman guard Mikey Dixon who finished with 13 points on five of 11 from the floor. Kiss made the play of the game with his incredibly impressive put-back dunk in the first half.

If there was one problem for the Hawks, it was their rebounding. Brady was the only Hawk with more than five boards, as he had 11; five of which were offensive. As a team, they racked up 46 rebounds, including 17 offensive rebounds, both of which were above their season averages. The problem was that they allowed the Bobcats to pull down 24 offensive rebounds. That’s unacceptable for a team that preaches discipline.

Coach King Rice wasn’t able to play his bench as much in this one, as Stewart and Tilghman were the only bench players to play over nine minutes. Justin Robinson played a team high 38 minutes.

Quotes from players and coaches:

“I just want to start by saying how much I respect Tom Moore and the Quinnipiac program. I’ve been watching him for a long time and he’s a guy that’s made me a better coach because of how badly they were beating us when I first got here. I’ve got some really good kids on my side and we’re still getting better. We’re playing good basketball in stretches. I would like it to be 40 minutes of great defense, 40 minutes of solid offense, and see how good we can get. We’re constantly finding ways to win and I love that about this group. How much more can we do? We got to 95; they shot 36% and 15% from three. I want us to get as good as we can be. To do it at both ends for 40 minutes, we haven’t really done that yet. No one really does. I just want our stretches where we play undisciplined to be farther [apart] and smaller. Today they got bigger. We have work to do and the fans don’t pick up on those things. I’m a coach so I see all the little things we’re supposed to do. I’m on my bench hard right now. Guys could’ve had a lot of minutes, but we didn’t want to box out and we didn’t want to dive on the floor. I’ll never put them in if they don’t dive on the ball.” – Head Coach King Rice

“I’m not really worried about getting to the record. It’ll come naturally. Tonight I took 22 [shots] tonight and I thought, for the most part, they were good looks. I was thinking, ‘Just keep taking good shots and getting my teammates the ball and eventually we’ll start hitting and get stops.’ I want to go up there {Marist} and come out with a win. If I score 14 and we lose, I won’t be happy. If I score nine points and we win by 35, or we win by one, I’ll be happy. I want to keep my program going in the right direction.” – Senior guard Justin Robinson

“ [Coach] told us he wanted us he wanted the game up and down. So he told me, in the beginning, that if I was open, to get a few [shots] up quick, to get the game going up and down. I tried to get a few up and I made the first one, missed the second, then hit the next two and tried to build on from that.” – Sophomore guard Micah Seaborn

Up Next:
Monmouth (17-5) travels to Marist (6-14) on Monday, January 30.

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