While Fairfield is hardly an offensive juggernaut, the Stags looked like one when compared to Saint Peter’s second half output, which was as frigid as the long winter has been in the Northeast.
The Peacocks made six of their 31 field goals in the second half, good for a 19.4% field goal percentage. That percentage was not aided by their struggles inside the arc, where the Peacocks made just three of 24 two-point field goals (12.5%) over the game’s final 20 minutes, where they fell 57-43 to Fairfield.
“We go through these stretches where we’re not scoring, but our guys, at times, have bounce back and come back the next game and shot the ball really well,” head coach John Dunne said following the defeat. “We got to make shots. We have to, when we get into the paint, we have to work harder for better shots and not settle.”
Fairfield worked hard to keep the Peacocks out of the lane. Guards Trevis Wyche and Desi Washington were able to attack in the lane, but got trapped often and were left looking to be bailed out. Wyche got into the lane on the team’s second possession of the half and perfectly dropped it off to Quadir Welton in the corner near the basket, but he missed the easy follow through lay in to get the Peacocks on the board.
“They were really swarming the ball and we had guys open on rolls,” Dunne said. “We were either missing them, or when we did get it to them, they were missing chippies. We just have to get better at that part of it. There’s been games where we’ve delivered in that area and there’s games when we haven’t. Today, certainly we didn’t.”
Saint Peter’s amassed 10 offensive rebounds in the second half, but scored just 17 points, for a total of 0.63 points in 27 possessions. Six Peacocks scored at least one point for Saint Peter’s in the second half, but none scored more than five points. Add to that three turnovers, five blocked shots to one assist, and things could not have gone worse for Saint Peter’s in adding their 11th MAAC loss of the year.
“It’s not like we didn’t play hard, we did play hard, and I’m not mad at them for their effort, we didn’t make any shots,” Dunne said. “For us, we just have to get better at our end of offense game, at our drive and kick. Still two more to play before the tournament, we need to get better. I know the guys are disappointed, but when you don’t score points and you don’t make shots, it’s kind of hard.”
Ryan Restivo wrote the America East conference preview for the 2014-15 Blue Ribbon College Basketball Yearbook. He covers the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference, the America East conference and Hofstra for Big Apple Buckets. You can follow Ryan on Twitter @ryanarestivo or contact Ryan at rrestivo[at]nycbuckets.com.