DENTON, TX — Juniors A.J. English and Isaiah Williams each contributed career-high point efforts in leading the Iona College men’s basketball team to a 78-58 win over North Texas in non-conference action at The Super Pit. English netted 37 and Williams had 21 as the Gaels improved to 2-0 in the BD GlobalSports Roundball Showcase.
English was 11-for-21 from the field, 5-for-11 from beyond the arc and 10-for-12 from the free throw line to account for his 37 points. He scored 26 in the second half alone as the Gaels pulled away from the Mean Green. English also added a team-best eight rebounds, four assists and three steals and did not record a turnover in 39 minutes of play.
Williams had 21 points, shooting 6-of-12 from the field and 5-of-10 from beyond the arc and was 4-for-4 from the charity stripe. He added three rebounds, three assists, two steals and a block. Senior David Laury posted 14 points in support of his two teammates. Junior Kelvin Amayo had four points, seven rebounds and three assists.
The Gaels struggled mightily from the field in the opening half. Iona hit just seven of its first 26 field goal attempts (26.9%) and were 3-for-18 (16.7%) from beyond the arc with eight turnovers through the first 18:06 of the half. Despite the woes, the Maroon & Gold trailed by just seven points with 2:49 to play. A mid-range jumper by English followed by two free throws and a three-pointer by Williams and emphatic dunk from Amayo led to a 9-0 run in less than a minute and a two-point Iona lead with 62 ticks left. North Texas had a field goal on its final possession to knot the score at 32-32 going into halftime.
Iona scored the first 10 points of the second half and led by the margin just 3:23 into the frame. In total, Iona’s run was 19-2 over 7:18 to take command of the contest. The Mean Green got within eight points with 15:30 left but would not get any closer.
Coming into the contest, North Texas out rebounded its first three opponents by an average of 12 per game while the Gaels have been out rebounded by 12.7. The Mean Green had a slight 35-21 advantage on the glass. After eight turnovers in the first 18 minutes, Iona had just two in the final 22 and had 15 assists in the contest.
North Texas was led by Jordan Williams’ 11 points. Armani Flanigan had nine points and eight rebounds.
The Gaels return to New Rochelle and host Delaware State on Wednesday (Nov. 26), Thanksgiving Eve at the Hynes Center in game three of the Roundball Showcase.