Men’s Basketball Wins Five Straight Games in A-10 Play


Darius Quisenberry attacks the George Washington defense in an 85-70 win at the Rose Hill Gym. (Courtesy of Fordham Athletics)

The ball keeps rolling forward for Fordham with five consecutive wins. Keith Urgo’s team has gained serious momentum holding a top five spot in the conference. Given the current state of the Atlantic 10, Fordham is in serious position to vie for a top four spot in the A-10 tournament. Teams that earn a top four spot get a double bye, something Fordham desires.

The three game road trip wrapped up in Olean, New York at Saint Bonaventure University. The Bonnies are not the same team as they were last year in any sense. Head coach Mark Schmidt lost five all-time greats that accumulated an A-10 title in 2021. They either transferred to power five schools or went professional, everyone else entered the transfer portal to seek greener pastures which forced Schmidt’s hand into an entire roster overhaul.

Growing pains have been the common theme of the season for the Bonnies all year. Coming into their matchup against Fordham, they were 9-0 at home but winless on the road. The Reilly Center is notorious for being one of the better atmospheres in the A-10, factor in Schmidt as one of the best coaches in the country Fordham was served a full plate.

The Bonnies are a scrappy bunch, highlighted by Saint Peter’s University transfer Daryl Banks who dropped a whopping 29 points against the Rams. He propelled the Bonnies and led all scorers, going 12-12 from the free throw line.

Banks’ huge night was the only reason Bonaventure was in the game. His backcourt mate, Kyrell Luc, only managed 10 points on the night while the rest of the Bonnies who played didn’t surpass nine points yet maintained a 30-28 lead into halftime.

Sophomore Zach Riley was the match that began the fire, disrupting the final possession of the first half with a steal to keep Fordham in striking distance.

The Rams came out firing in the second half, utilizing an 18-8 run that included a huge putback dunk from freshman Elijah Gray to maintain the lead. Will Richardson continued his fine play as a freshman, propelling the team out of a 12-5 hole in the first half. He finished his day on 6-8 shooting and 4-5 from range to total 16 points on the day.

Graduate student Khalid Moore led Fordham with 19 points on a crazy efficient 6-7 from the field. Fellow fifth year Darius Quisenberry began slowly but finished with 17 points despite 3-10 shooting from the field, with 11 of his points coming off free throws.

Senior Rostik Noyvistkyi included seven points, five boards and five dimes that also included a monster dunk off a baseline drive. There were points in the second half where Fordham not only was the better team but dominated the Bonnies in some aspects. The Rams allowed zero fastbreak points and outscored Mark Schmidt’s group 28-18 in the paint.

Even when tempers started to flare in the second half, Fordham remained poised to close it out in a hostile environment 79-68 in spite of a last ditch effort from Saint Bonaventure.

The Rams won three straight on the road, something that hasn’t been done since 1995 and snapped a huge losing streak against the Bonnies that dated back to March 2013. Upon their triumphant return home began their preparation for George Washington University (GW).

The Colonials came into the Bronx a top 100 team in adjusted offense according to Kenpom, and with the A-10’s leading scorer James Bishop. First year head coach Chris Caputo is veering the Colonials on the right path that has seen incredible highs.

A trip to Rose Hill was a step back for the Colonials, falling down to Fordham 85-70 in a second half trucking by the Rams. Fordham ended the back-and-forth first half on a buzzer beating dunk by Moore to slice into the 37-33 lead.

The momentum was suppressed in the second half as both teams went back and forth, carried by Brendan Adams and GW getting ahead by as many as six. Following the first media timeout, Urgo’s club found a switch and flipped it. Some sparks flew which turned into a five alarm fire as Fordham went bonkers the rest of the way.

The 20-4 run was capitalized on a 30-point game from Moore and a fast break where he pulled off a 180 degree dunk. Quisenberry joined the fun with 22 points of his own, and junior Antrell Charlton recorded 10 points and seven steals, the third highest single game steal total in program history.

10 points from senior Rostik Novitskyi and six from Gray were enough to propel Fordham forward, but the team MVP of the game didn’t even throw up points.

The hero of the day was Kyle Rose; despite not posting a single point he shut down Bishop by holding him to four second half points. His line included three assists, three swipes and only one personal foul.

The team shot 55% from the field in the second half while capitalizing on GW’s weak defense by adding 17 fast break points and 40 in the paint.
For the first time since 2016, the Rams won four straight A-10 games. One of the highest peaks the program has seen in some time and their best in-conference start since 2007 when the team began 6-2.

In came the first place Billikens on Tuesday night for one of the biggest matchups at Rose Hill in a long time. The incoming 7-1 Saint Louis University (SLU) team held the nation’s assist leader, Yuri Collins. The point guard came in with 10.6 assists per contest piloting a potent Saint Louis offensive attack.

Four players came in averaging over 10 points headed by Gibson Jimerson, one of the best scoring players in the A-10.

Little Fordham went up against the big, bad Saint Louis team and kept the game close the entire way. Allowing for Saint Louis to lead by as many as eight, Fordham went pound for pound in the first half down only 36-31.

Francis Okoro did the damage for SLU with a 21 point, 11 rebound performance on 8-10 shooting, simply feasting in the post against Fordham bigs. But he would be the only real offense SLU received; Collins only had nine points but a lone assist on four turnovers.

Fordham was led again by Moore and Quisenberry, with 27 and 20 points respectively. Chipping in was Richardson with eight points and Gray playing huge minutes to go along with a game changing dunk late.

Junior Abdou Tsimbila added six boards, but his two points came off a breakaway dunk off a steal that sent life into the Rose Hill Gym. Charlton hit clutch free throws towards the end and Novitskyi added four of his own with Rose playing his stout defense to march along to a 75-65 victory.

The Rams have also been a second half team, waking up in the second 20 minutes and utilizing huge runs. They were especially good from the free throw line, taking 24 trips while hitting 20.

For the first time since 2007, Fordham has won 18 total games. That same year was the last time the Rams won five games in a row in conference play.

With all the momentum now on their side after taking down the top dog in the conference, Fordham will hit the road with a matchup against the defending A-10 champion Richmond University Spiders.