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71


Iona (12-8) at Monmouth (10-12)



The Sports Network

DATE & TIME: Tuesday, February 4, 7 p.m. (ET)

FACTS & STATS: Site: The MAC (4,100) -- West Long Branch, New Jersey. Television: None. Home Record: Iona 8-2, Monmouth 7-4. Away Record: Iona 4-6, Monmouth 3-8. Neutral Record: Iona 0-0, Monmouth 0-0. Conference Record: Iona 9-2, Monmouth 4-7. Series Record: Monmouth leads, 2-0.

GAME NOTES: The Iona Gaels put a four-game win streak on the line as they travel to face the Monmouth Hawks in Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference action at the MAC.

This game was orignally scheduled on Monday, but moved do to weather conditions.

Iona has won four in a row and six of its last seven games en route to a 9-2 MAAC record, which is good for second place in the conference - just a half- game behind Canisius. The Gaels took down Manhattan, 85-73, in their last outing.

Monmouth has lost two in a row and four of its last six. The Hawks are coming off a tough 75-73 loss to Marist Thursday, which set them back to 4-7 in conference play - five and a half games behind Canisius at the top of the MAAC.

This is just the third meeting between the two programs in their series history. The Gaels hold a 2-0 all-time edge against the Hawks. They haven't met on the court since the 1985 season, and this is their first time meeting as members of the MAAC.

Manhattan opened up a six-point lead at the start of the second half against Iona, but the Gaels erased the deficit and tied the score at 50-50 with 12:09 left to play. Iona rushed ahead and held on for the MAAC win. David Laury led a group of five Iona players in double-digit point totals with 21. Mike Poole chipped in 19, Sean Armand scored 18, A.J. English had 14 and Isaiah Williams netted 10 for the Gaels, who shot 48.4 percent from the floor as a team.

Armand and English have proven to be the top scorers for the Gaels this season, averaging 18.3 and 17.6 ppg, respectively. English leads the team with 81 assists on the year, with Armand a close second at 79 total assists. Tre Bowman checks in at third on the Iona squad with 13.3 ppg on 50.6 percent shooting from the floor. Laury rounds out the double-digit scorers for the Gaels this season at 12.8 ppg, adding a team-best 7.1 rpg average.

Monmouth, down by 10 points with just under six minutes to play against Marist, made a run to get within one point with 7.3 seconds left in regulation, 72-71. The Red Foxes were able to hold on for the slim victory in the final seconds after blowing the 10-point cushion. Deon Jones scored 14 points to pace the Hawks, adding eight rebounds to his stat line. Both Andrew Nicholas and Max DiLeo chipped in 10 points, while Tyrone O'Garro pulled down 11 rebounds.

Jones and Nicholas are the top two scorers for Monmouth this season, as the only two players averaging point totals in the double digits. Jones tops the squad with 15.1 ppg on 44.6 percent shooting from the field, while Nicholas checks in at 14 ppg. Jones brings his team-high 6.8 rpg to his game. Justin Robinson tops the squad in assists with 77 on the year, adding 8.5 ppg. The Hawks have averaged 71.3 ppg through their 22 games played this season.

Monmouth has had an average season so far in its first as a member of the MAAC, but Iona is continuously proving it is one of the top teams in the conference. The Gaels should have no problem scoring on Monmouth's defense.

Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Iona 80, Monmouth 71

02/04 10:39:46 ET