Siena knocks off Niagara 71-54 in Metro Atlantic opener

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) Evan Hymes scored 14 points and Ryan Oliver 13 to lead eighth-seeded Siena to a 71-54 win over ninth-seeded Niagara in the first round of the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference tournament on Thursday.

Marquis Wright added 11 points and Lavon Long 10 for the Saints (11-19), who ended a five-game losing streak. They advance to Saturday's quarterfinals to face league champion Iona.

Dominique Reid scored 16 of his career-high 24 points in the second half for the Purple Eagles (8-22), who had won five straight. Emile Blackman had 13 points.

Wright and Willem Brandwijk had 3-pointers in an 8-0 surge late in the first half to give Siena a 14-point advantage. The Saints led 24-22 at the half, and then shot 55.5 percent (15 for 27) in the second half.

Siena quickly pushed the lead to 20 points in the second half and Niagara never got closer than 11.

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