NEW YORK — Spending the New Year at home proved to too unpalatable for the La Salle men’s basketball team, and it had to take its show on the road to find something to celebrate to begin 2024.
Five players scored in double figures for the Explorers in their first conference road game of the season, an 81-76 victory over the Fordham Rams inside Rose Hill Gym on Saturday afternoon. Daeshon Shepherd led La Salle with 15 points, including hitting a massive three-pointer with 1:41 left to give the Explorers a 79-74 lead.
La Salle enjoyed the lead for the entirety of the second half, and that advantage bulged to 10 on a Ryan Zan layup just over a minute into the second half. From there, the Rams, who were coming off a triple-overtime victory in D.C. against George Washington on Wednesday, slowly chipped away at the lead.
A jumper from Elijah Gray pulled the Rams to within 69-67 at the 7:32 mark. Though it got a couple of defensive stops, Fordham could not convert on their opportunities to tie or take the lead, and it proved costly when Jhamir Brickus hit a three from the top of the key after the Explorers broke the press for a 72-67 lead.
All seven players who took the court for the Explorers scored at least seven points, with Rokas Jocius sputting up 14 points, six rebounds and three blocks off the bench. Andrés Marrero also was a key contributor as a reserve, with seven points, five rebounds and three assists.
Gray led the Rams with 18 points, as four players scored in double figures for Fordham. Will Richardson had 16 points, with Japhet Medor chipping in 15 and Kyle Rose with 12.
*Editor’s note: Above the byline is the photo gallery from Saturday afternoon’s game, with all photos taken by ALOST senior photographer Robert Cole. After clicking on the first photo to enlarge the picture, make sure to press the left and right arrow buttons to scroll through the rest of the pictures. There are XX pictures in total.