The Manhattan Jaspers outplayed and outhustled the Quinnipiac Bobcats en-route to an 83-66 victory.
Quinnipiac felt Manhattan’s energy right from the tip. The Jaspers bench rarely went quiet throughout the game, which fueled a defensive masterclass. Manhattan scored 30 points off the 16 turnovers it forced.
“It really tests your discipline,” Quinnipiac head coach Baker Dunleavy said. “When they pressure or when they play really physically you see driving gaps, you see opportunities, but because they’re big and athletic, they shut down pretty quickly.”
While the Manhattan defense was stifling to start the game, forcing three turnovers in the first three minutes, Quinnipiac countered with solid shooting — 50% from the field including 3-of-6 from 3-point range.
“We were only down by six at half, which was lucky,” Dunleavy said.
Quinnipiac’s defensive efforts were the exact opposite. Despite frequently switching between man-to-man and zone defense, the Bobcats allowed the Jaspers to shoot 67.3% from the field.
“We were switching back-and-forth, just trying to take our opponent out of some rhythm,” Dunleavy said. “It didn’t work out, but that was the intent.”
Senior forward Jose Perez and senior forward Josh Roberts led the Jaspers with 41 points combined.
Quinnipiac senior guard Tyrese Williams went down with an apparent leg injury in the second, Dunleavy said the guard would undergo an MRI on Monday and couldn’t offer any updates after the game.
After Williams’ injury, the Jaspers put together a 10-0 run to push their lead to 14 points.
Manhattan didn’t stop there. The Jaspers pushed their lead up to 18 points, which was punctuated by an electric dunk by Roberts.
Quinnipiac was able to battle back, getting the game within single digits with five minutes to go but was unable to put together a run to tie the game. Graduate forward Kevin Marfo put together his 11th double-double of the season with 20 points and 11 rebounds in the loss.
The Bobcats are back in action next weekend, traveling to Marist to continue MAAC play on Sunday, Feb. 20.