By Anthony Covino
A career-high 29 points by Xzavier Malone-Key was just enough to propel the Knights over Quinnipiac.
FDU snapped their five game losing streak with a 78-77 win over Quinnipiac on Tue., Dec. 3.
Junior guard Jahlil Jenkins added 17 points and junior forward Elyjah Williams chipped in 11 of his own.
The Knights improved to 2-5 on the season, while Quinnipiac fell to 2-4.
The highlight of the night was the performance from FDU captain Malone-Key, who scored his 29 points on an 8-12 shooting night and forced his opponent into 7 defensive fouls. He made 11 of his 13 free throws on the night.
“I’m so happy with his maturation as a player and as a student athlete,” head coach Greg Herenda said. “Tonight he was the MVP, it was really clear. He got where he wanted to, they just couldn’t guard him, they fouled him. He didn’t make all his foul shots but the one he made won the game.”
Malone-Key has missed five games this season but has averaged 23 points since returning to the lineup on Nov. 24 against Lafayette.
FDU shot 27-54 (50%) from the field, 5-16 (31.3%) from the three point line, and 19-26 (73.1%) from the free throw line.
Quinnipiac shot 31-61 (50.8%) from the field, 9-28 (32.1%) from the three point line, and 6-13 (46.2%) from the free throw line
FDU went into halftime with a 44-29 lead, but Quinnipiac was able to come back in the second half and cut the deficit to one in the last minutes of the game, but Malone-Key’s key free throw with two seconds left gave the Knights a 78-77 lead and sealed the win for the Knights.
“Just going to Kentucky with one [win] under your belt gives you a little bit more of a pop in your step and it gives you some oxygen to breathe,” Herenda said. “During Thanksgiving when you’re not feeling success, the turkey doesn’t taste as good and it’s hard, but the players deserve what they got tonight.”
The Knights travel to Lexington, KY to play the Wildcats on Sat. Dec. 7.
Photo by Kenneth Ramirez Castro
Junior forward Elyjah Williams scored 11 points in the win.