Offense strides past Pitt-Bradford, 90-69, in opener

Andrew David Kuczkowski , Sports Editor

The Buffalo State men’s basketball team (1-0) travelled state lines to kick off the season with a win against Pitt-Bradford, 90-69. The Bengals’ offense got off on the right foot with an efficient performance.

The 21-point victory was led by sophomore guard Dom Grayer’s 23 points, with senior guard Lovell Smith closely behind chipping in 18 points. Buffalo State held a lead throughout the game as the first half ended 43-32. The Bengals held their foot to the pedal, limiting opportunities down low, where the Panthers scored 66 percent of their points.

Offense capitalizes on set plays 

The Bengals made a successful 54 percent of their shots, 34 of 63, which included a 39.1 percent 9 of 23 from the 3-point line. These shots did not come by fast breaks or turnovers. The offense set up in the zone, ran through the play and either found the open shooter and made it or found a way to scrap a second chance point on the board.

The one aspect that isn’t as polished this early in the season was free-throw shooting. Buffalo State made a modest 13 of 20 (65 percent).

Who are you?

Grayer averaged 4.6 points per game last season. He usually wasn’t the team-high scorer, nor the game-high. But on Tuesday, he was both. A caveat is that the game is non-conference, but that does not take away from the possibility that this could be his breakout year. Grayer, who earned a spot among the starting five, was raining it down from deep. He netted 5 of 10 from beyond the line.

Depth

Buffalo State’s bench play brings optimism. Forward Jordan Chateau made his presence known down low. He scored 13 points off four field goals and five free throws. Freshman guard Zach Ciezki added another eight to the team’s score.

The Bengals will play in the Buffalo State Cole’s Classic on Friday, Nov. 18 and Saturday, Nov. 19. Villa Maria, York and Maine-Fort Kent are participating in the tournament. Buffalo State will face Maine-Fort Kent on Friday at 8 p.m. If they win, they’ll face the winner of Villa Maria/York and vice versa.

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