Well folks, we did it. The Bonnies won the Canadian national championship over Rutgers. Haters and losers will say Saturday's game was a showcase, but last time I checked, literally every tournament has its champion crowned in the last game. Congrats to Tennessee on their bronze medal and SUNY-Buffalo on earning those medals made from paper clips and yogurt labels from the Olympics episode of The Office.
Bona's has plenty of greats from Canada, but it took a couple of Jersey boys with wicked performances to make the Scarlet Knights into les miserables. Alejandro Vasquez and Justin Winston put up the best stat lines at Scotiabank Arena in 2019. You will see kids in parks all over the 6 doing the bow and arrow after nailing a 3. Then again, it shouldn't be a surprise that freshmen from Bona's did so well north of the border, but that usually means going to the Canadian ballet for 19- and 20-year olds from Western New York.
After successfully conquering the most prosperous nation in North America, the Bonnies return to the U.S. and take on a familiar foe: the Canisius Golden Griffins. That school's mentality puts the little in Little 3, folks (note to self: copy and paste this line for the Niagara preview).
We are 101-66 all-time against Canisius, which means we've literally beaten them more times than there have been Bonnies basketball seasons. The only thing Bonnies have defeated more than the Golden Griffins is Aramark workers in the Skellar on gameday. Bona's won the first game in the 1919-20 season by a score of 31-14 with four TD passes and a FG by Sam Stith Sr. .
Some on the Bandwagon advocate for us to play Canisius and Niagara twice in a season, just like it was back in the 50s. You may laugh at that idea, but I got to agree with them. When has a bunch of old white guys clamoring to make something great again ever been a bad thing?
I'd say Canisius is a hockey school, but that would imply anyone there has even seen any of the sports teams play. Instead of playing in their home gym called the KAC (pronounced like how Schmidt probably says the word "cock"), Canisius gave us a free home game on the road in the KeyBank Center. We literally sold out our tickets in their home city, a perfect way to sum up the state of Canisius sports.
Growing up in [insert geotargeted Western New York town here], I was always told to avoid two things when in the bright lights of Buffalo: going to Canisius and buying stocks from a man named Chris Collins. The good thing is if you do happen to take a wrong turn near Delaware Park and go by Canisius, you can just pretend the boring-looking campus is just another example of Rust Belt blight.
The nice thing about playing Canisius is you don't actually have to sweat researching that place. All you have to do is just hope they don't blindly find their way into getting their one win over Bona's every 5+ years.
Seven Steps to Victory
Sneak all those threes we made back over the Canadian border inside shampoo bottles and car doors.
Remember, it's not First Niagara, HSBC or, lol, Marine Midland anymore...
Give Canisius the red and black Sabres jerseys to wear so the crowd turns on them (unless we like those jerseys now?)
Hold Canisius under 106 points this time.
Heckle Billy Baron, since he's probably still on the roster somehow.
Confuse the Griffins into not remembering what year it is with our throwback uniforms.
Bona's has 2 players from WNY, Canisius has none. Advantage us.
Bona Bandwagon Commenter's Score on #a102k20: Bona's 91, Canisius 86
Unrealistic 2k Stat of the Game: Matthew Johnson - 4 blocks
LesterGreen Quote of the Day: "Yeah man lemme to filt u in steeve mesh he is to using to rolting out da red carp it use to the shed skin of Vic Thomas' rod, a la that belonging to a reticulated python, for to the eco-friendly carp it to go to from to RC tunnel to da podium buddy boy pal is to it that is to it."
Canisius Message Board Quote of the Day: "So you think the student section is why the Reilley Center is electric? It's part of the equation, but EVERYONE at the Reilley Center cheers, EVERYONE - grand parents, little kids, middle-aged adults, students, everyone. When I go to the KAC, if the students don't cheer there are maybe 30-40 people at most, behind the Canisius bench and media table that make any noise. That's it."
Let's go make the 69-mile journey to beat our crosstown rivals.