TORONTO - As far as Coach John Leary is concerned, Friday night's 50-37 victory against Madonna was a ''big win for our program against a quality opponent.''
Four players reached double figures (freshman Blaze Glenn paced the way with 15) as the Red Knights evened their record at 5-5. The victory total is one more than Leary's crew earned all of last season.
A bucket in the paint by Madonna's Josh Martin squared the scored at 12-12 after one period of play. Toronto opened the second with a 10-0 run fueled by sharp-shooting Tyler Owens and never trailed from there. The senior guard drained three consecutive triples to start the burst.
The Blue Dons, to their credit, did answer with seven consecutive points. Hard-working Nate Guio canned a jumper, James Carnes scored on a reverse layup and Levi Shreve added a bucket in transition. Guio made it 22-19 when he went one for two from the line.
Baskets by Gault and Brad Melville gave the Red Knights a 26-19 halftime advantage. Owens finished the initial 16 minutes with 12 points, all coming from behind the arc.
Melville took over in the fourth quarter, recording eight of his 10 points, as Toronto put the victory on ice.
Owens finished with 14 for the Red Knights, who went 19 of 47 from the floor. Like Melville, Gault also ended with 10.
Guio recorded his second double-double of the week for Madonna, scoring 11 points and grabbing 12 rebounds. The Blue Dons out-rebounded Toronto 26-17. Carnes added 10 and Ewusiak nine.
As a team, Madonna took 42 shots but canned just 16. The Blue Dons also were guilty of 20 ball-handling miscues.