Immediate reactions: UB 72, Canisius 57 — Big 4 Doubleheader 11/29/14

Canisius 19 38 — 57
Buffalo 34 38 — 72

By Nick Veronica

How it happened: Canisius couldn’t hit a shot in the first half and had no answer for UB in the paint as the Bulls led by 15 at halftime, 34-19, and coasted to a low-stress victory. Justin Moss dominated for 18 points and 12 rebounds while Lamonte Bearden led all players with 21 points. Canisius never led.

What it means: The loss was the 399th of Jim Baron’s career, putting him in sole possession of 10th place on the all-time losses list for college basketball coaches. That’s more indicative of a coach who’s been around a long time than a truly bad coach, as Baron’s overall record is 432-399, and coaches who only lose don’t last until 399 losses. Former Canisius coach Nick Macarchuk is tied for fifth on that list with 428 losses.

It was Jim Baron’s first loss against UB since coming to Canisius. UB improves to 4-1, with its only loss coming against No. 1 Kentucky. The Griffs go to 2-3 after opening the year with victories over Vermont and Lehigh.

[Postgame video: UB 72, Canisius 57]

It was over when: Pick your spot. UB led by 15 at halftime and led by as many as 20 points at 54-34 with 10:27 remaining. Canisius never threatened.

Sorry, fans: Empty seats were plentiful in the First Niagara Center, and those who came (announced attendance was 7,191) saw two blowouts. St. Bonaventure and UB both won by 15. Better luck next time.

Game ball: Moss had the best stats of the night, but Bearden was very impressive for a freshman point guard and picks up the game ball. He finished with 23 points on 9 of 13 shooting, including 2 of 3 from behind the arc, and was especially good in comparison to Canisius’ freshman point guard, Jan Grzelinski, who played only six minutes and didn’t attempt a shot.

Canisius player of the game: Nobody. Josiah Heath had a good line with eight points and six rebounds but didn’t make enough of an impact defending UB’s bigs. Zach Lewis led the team with 14 points but is still forcing far too many shots, going 4 for 14 today.

Next: Both teams are back in action Dec. 3. UB is at St. Bonaventure and Canisius opens MAAC play at Saint Peter’s.

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