Hofstra 80, Drexel 67

Hofstra’s potential Achilles heel in Baltimore is its lack of depth, which is why it was crucial to see the Pride come out on top after having its reserves tested early. Hofstra fought through foul trouble (bigs Rokas Gustys and Andre Walker alternated court time following each accrued foul) in an 80-67 win that proved Hofstra could get the job done in less than optimal circumstances.

CAA Player of the Year Juan’ya Green posted 22 points, six boards, and four assists, and hit a 3-pointer that capped 14-4 second-half run that quelled a Drexel rally. Gustys tallied a 16-11 double-double in 20 minutes of playing time, and Ameen Tanksley and Brian Bernardi combined for 27 points. Walker, Desire Buie, and Justin Foreman-Wright accounted for 17% of the minutes — a noteworthy mark for the team that averaged the fewest percentage of bench minutes (14.3%) of any team in Division I.

Drexel forwards Rodney Williams and Kaz Abif were the Dragons main sources of offense, with Abif hitting numerous mid-range jumpers every time the Pride threatened to break the game open. Sophomore Sammy Mojica (10 points) got off to a hot start to the game, but that dissipated as he too struggled with fouls. Mojica, Williams, and Abif were three of the five Dragons to finish the game with four fouls each.

Drexel trailed by as many as 20 in the second half, but managed to get within nine following Tavon Allen’s corner three with 9:40 to play. Following a flurry of three throws, Hofstra embarked on the aforementioned 14-4 run that essentially put the game away.

Hofstra awaits the winner of the William & Mary-James Madison game.

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