By Zack Penn — STAFF WRITER
Hofstra men’s basketball dropped their third straight game Saturday afternoon, 85-76, at the hands of the Siena Saints at Times Union Center.
Senior Rokas Gustys had a vintage performance, pacing the Pride with 18 points and securing 15 rebounds, but it was not nearly enough as the Saints lead for the entirety of the contest. The double-double was the 37th of Gustys’ career and with it, he became the third Pride player to ever grab 1,000 career rebounds.
“(Rokas) was terrific. He was the only guy who came out to play…He’s playing like a senior,” head coach Joe Mihalich said.
Junior guard Justin Wright-Foreman did his best to help Gustys’ efforts, leading all scorers with 25 while recording no turnovers, but he couldn’t do anything to contain the Siena offense.
The Saints had five players score in double figures, led by Roman Penn who notched an incredibly efficient performance with 14 points, 11 assists, four rebounds and no turnovers. Meanwhile, wings Nico Clareth and Prince Oduro notched 17 apiece to help steady the Siena attack.
After starting 3-0, Hofstra’s defense has crumbled, giving up an average of 84 points over their last three losses.
“We learned against some really good teams how to win,” Mihalich said. “You can’t sometimes come the way you want to and other times not.”
It’s a wonder how Hofstra even had a chance in this game when taking a look at the field goal percentages. Siena jumped out to a 38-33 halftime lead behind an excellent 7 of 9 shooting from behind the arc, eventually ending the game shooting 58.8 percent.
The Pride, on the other hand, shot 9-24 from three as sophomore Eli Pemberton went 1-9 on threes himself.
Hofstra finished shooting 36.8 percent from the field.
Despite the overall discrepancy in shooting percentages, Hofstra had a chance late to tie the game up. Down 55-46 with 13 minutes left in the second half, Wright-Foreman hit back-to-back threes to put the Pride in striking distance at 58-55.
Siena killed the Hofstra rally quickly, however, going on an immediate run that would put the Saints back up 74-62 with just over three minutes to play.
Hofstra (3-3) will try to get back in the win column Thursday night at 7:00 p.m. as they take on local Division II foe, Molloy College. After securing their first win of the season, Siena (1-4) will look to capitalize on their momentum as they face St. Bonaventure Wednesday night at 7:00 p.m.