HAMDEN, Conn. - Justin Rutty (Newburgh, N.Y.) registered game highs with 23 points and eight rebounds, while James Feldeine (New York, N.Y.) added 22 points as the Quinnipiac University men's basketball team defeated Fairleigh Dickinson, 73-52, Saturday afternoon at the TD Bank Sports Center. The game was the Bobcats' home and Northeast Conference opener. With the win, the Bobcats improve to 4-3 (1-0 NEC), while the Knights fall to 1-7 (0-1 NEC).
Freshman Dave Johnson (Jackson, N.J.) established career highs in points (10), assists (6) and steals (3) without committing a turnover in 26 minutes. He scored very efficiently on 4-of-5 shooting, including 2-for-2 from long range. Fellow first-year player Jamee Jackson (Newark, N.J.) matched Feldeine with eight rebounds.
"I like how we played with a little bit better focus in the second half," said Quinnipiac Head Coach Tom Moore. "I like how we took the lead from 10 and expanded on it. That's a real dangerous team we played today because they have a lot of guys who can score. To hold them to 32 percent field-goal percentage is a pretty significant achievement."
Sean Baptiste led Fairleigh Dickinson with 21 points, but was held to just six points and one field goal in the second half by a stingy Bobcats defense. Mike Scott added 14 points for the Knights.
After FDU scored on a Baptiste jumper off the opening tip, Rutty got even with a jumper in the paint. Johnson's three at the 16:48 mark put the Bobcats on top for good. The Rutty bucket and Johnson three sparked an 18-2 run covering close to nine minutes of play that gave the Bobcats a 14-point cushion by the 9:24 mark of the initial stanza. The Knights would draw to within no closer than seven points for the rest of the game.
While Feldeine took control in the first half with 15 points, Rutty matched his senior teammate with 15 points of his own in the second half.
For the game, the Bobcats outshot the Knights, 45.2 percent (28-62) to 32.1 percent (17-53) from the floor and 30.4 percent (7-23) to 29.4 percent (5-17) from long range. FDU took a 65.0 percent (13-20) to 58.8 percent (10-17) edge from the free-throw line. The Bobcats outrebounded their seventh consecutive opponent to start the season with a 43-36 advantage against the Knights.
The Bobcats return to action Tuesday, when they return to the road for a non-conference tilt at Rhode Island. Opening tip from the Ryan Center is scheduled for 7 p.m. The game will be televised live on NESN.