Box Score / Box Score (PDF) / Post-Game Press Conference
Hempstead, NY -
Junior Kenneth Ortiz
(Newark, NJ / Science Park / Southern Mississippi) scored six of his team-best 15 points over the final 2:22 of the game, while the frontcourt trio of junior Naofall Folahan
(Cotonou, Republic of Benin / Wilbraham & Monson Academy (MA)), classmate Orlando Parker
(Orlando, FL / Orlando Christian Prep) and sophomore Mario Moody
(East Orange, NJ / East Orange Campus) combined for 26 points, 24 rebounds and six blocks to lift Wagner to a 52-44 victory over Hofstra at the Mack Sports Complex.
Ortiz added four steals and was an impressive 5-of-11 from the floor, including converting a pair as the shot clock was expiring late in regulation. Folahan grabbed a career-high 10 rebounds to go along with five points and four blocks in just 14 minutes of action. Parker recorded all nine of his points after halftime while Moody notched a season-high 12 points with nine rebounds.
The Seahawks improve to 3-4 on the year while the Pride fall to 3-6 with their fourth-straight setback.
In the first half, Ortiz opened the scoring with this fastbreak layup
off a steal. Providing instant offense for the second-straight game, Moody came off the bench to score the next 10 Green & White points in staking the visitors to a 12-10 lead with 9:36 to play before halftime. Included in Moody's repertoire of field goals was this jumper
and this impressive fadeaway jumper.
Later in the half with Wagner clinging to a 16-15 lead, Hofstra ripped off six-straight points before heading into halftime with its largest lead of the game at 24-19. In the opening stanza, Moody and Ortiz accounted for 16 of the Seahawks' 19 points while going a combined 7-for-12 from the floor. However, the rest of the team notched three points on just 1-for-15 shooting.
The Seahawks came roaring out of intermission with a 12-2 run to reclaim the lead for good at 31-26 with 13:15 remaining. Ortiz and Folahan each split a pair from the line, before the latter slammed home an Ortiz offering to cut the deficit to 24-23 in just over two minutes into the second half. After Moussa Kane briefly answered with a layup, Ortiz and freshman Eric Fanning
(Trenton, NJ / Perkiomen (PA)) each converted a pair from the line in reclaiming the lead for the Green & White at 27-26. After the Wagner defense forced a turnover, senior Jonathon Williams
(Richmond, CA / Kennedy / City College of San Francisco) delivered this ferocious dunk
and Moody converted a layup to cap the game-changing spurt.
Hofstra would not go away as Taren Buie scored 14 of the next 15 Pride points in helping to make it a one-possession game on four occasions. However, Hofstra could not get tie or take the lead as Wagner answered each time. After Buie sank a pair of free throws to make it 44-41 with 2:56 to play, Ortiz hit a jumper with one on the shot clock. Stephen Nwaukoni again made it a three-point game on defense, before the Pride stopped the Seahawks on offense. However, Ortiz forced a turnover on the ensuing possession before sinking this back-breaking layup
with just 33.3 seconds remaining and zero on the shot clock.
Ortiz would put the game away with a pair of free throws with 24 seconds to play as the Green & White would tack on two more freebies in pulling out the 52-44 victory.
Senior Josh Thompson
(Bridgeton, NJ / St. Augustine Prep) was outstanding again off the bench, registering a career-best matching four steals, four rebounds and the final two Wagner points over 29 minutes off the bench.
For the game, the Seahawks converted a season-best 85.0 percent (17-for-20) from the line, while the Pride made good on just 42.1 percent (8-for-19). The Green & White also won the rebounding battle for the sixth time this year by a 44-33 count, including posting a whopping 23-13 advantage that led to a 9-0 differential in second-chance points.
Buie led all players with 16 points, while Nwaukoni grabbed a game-high 11 rebounds to lead the way for Hofstra.
Wagner returns to action on Saturday, December 15 when the Seahawks welcome Coppin State to the Spiro Sports Center at 4:00 pm.Photography by Dave SaffranNOTES
* Ortiz became the first Wagner player to lead the team in scoring this season besides Williams.
* Over his last two games, Ortiz has scored 19 of his 30 points after halftime.
* For the year, he is averaging 6.7 points per game in the second half, on 50.0 percent (14-for-28) shooting, compared with just 3.0 points per game, on 28.1 percent (9-for-32) shooting, in the first half.
* Folahan cracked double-figures (10) on the glass for the first time in his 68-game Seahawk career, while breaking his previous career-high of nine set at Hofstra back on November 26, 2010.
* Moody is averaging 10.5 points, 11.5 rebounds and 2.0 blocks per game over his last two outings ... Over his first five games, he averaged just 3.4 points, 2.8 rebounds and 1.0 block each time out.
* Parker scored a season-best nine points to go along with a season-best matching five rebounds.
* Freshman Langston Burnett
(Beltsville, MD / St. Vincent Pallotti) converted his first collegiate field goal in the first half with a three pointer.
* Wagner recorded a season-high 17 free throws while matching its previous season-highs with 11 steals and eight blocks.
* The Seahawks scored just 19 points in the first half, marking the third time the Green & White failed to notch at least 20 points in a half ... Interestingly enough, Wagner has come out on top in all three of those games.
* The Seahawks have limited the opposition to less than 50 points in all three of their wins.
* The Green & White improved to 2-8, all-time, against Hofstra on the road during the Division I era (1976-1977) and has now won back-to-back games against the Pride for the first time since claiming three-straight between 1986 and 1989.
* In its two-straight wins over Hofstra, Wagner is limiting the Pride to just 43.5 points per game, on 31.2 percent (29-for-93) shooting, including 19.0 percent (4-for-21) from long range ... Additionally, in both games the Seahawks limited the Pride to 20 second-half points.Follow Wagner Athletics on Twitter (@wagnerathletics) for all the latest news and updates on the athletic department, @WagnerHoops for news and updates on the mens basketball program and @bashirmason to follow the Seahawks first-year head coach.