Kiss Scores 33 Points To Lead Bryant Past Sacred Heart On New Year’s Eve

Bryant University Press Release

SMITHFIELD, R.I. – Peter Kiss scored 33 points and the Bryant University men’s basketball team held off a pesky Sacred Heart team, 85-82, on New Year’s Eve at the Chace Athletic Center.

With the victory, the Bulldogs start Northeast Conference play 2-0 for the first time since 2015-16. It also marked Bryant’s first regular season home win over the Pioneers since Jan. 16, 2014.

The final game of 2021 came down to the wire as Sacred Heart grabbed a rebound and called time with 11 seconds to go, down three. The ensuing inbound pass was tipped and after a brief scrum, Aaron Clarke had a three from the top carom off. Tyler Brelsford grabbed the board and ran out the clock.

Kiss dominated from the jump on Friday, scoring 33 points on 12-of-22 shooting, while also adding three rebounds, two assists and four steals. Charles Pride also shined, scoring 18 points to go along with five rebounds and three assists. Adham Eleeda chipped in 14, Luis Hurtado Jr. had six assists and six boards, and Hall Elisias had five boards and five blocks.

Game InformationBryant 85, Sacred Heart 82Records: Bryant 6-7, 2-0 NEC | Sacred Heart 5-10, 1-1 NECLocation: Chace Athletic Center (Smithfield, R.I.)Attendance: 503

Key Moments

  • Kiss canned four key free throws in the final 1:30 to help Bryant hold off a late Sacred Heart charge.

How it Happened

  • Sacred Heart got the jump on the Bulldogs, scoring the games first six points.
  • Bryant responded by scoring the next eight points. Pride scored the final four of the run to give the Black and Gold their first lead with 16:01 to go.
  • Eleeda’s first of four three-pointers pushed Bryant’s lead to 12-8.
  • After Pride delivered a conventional three-point play, Bryant turned back-to-back SHU turnovers into four quick points, prompting a Pioneer timeout. Kiss converted on the break both times to make it 23-14.
  • Bryant and SHU then started traded punches, with Kiss and Eleeda drilling threes to push Brynat’s lead to 36-25 with 4:45 to go.
  • Kiss gave Bryant a 48-38 lead at the break with a layup with 18 seconds left.
  • After Elisias hit a foul-line jumper to start the second half, Sacred Heart got back in the game with a 10-0 run, 50-48.
  • The game would remain tight the rest of the way. Kiss hit a transition three to make it 55-50 but Clarke answered right back with a three of his own.
  • Bryant and SHU then hit back-to-back threes within 30 seconds of each other, with Kiss’ triple making it 68-61 with 11:25 left.
  • The Pioneers would pull within 75-73 on an Alex Watson three but Eleeda replied with a trifecta of his own, his fourth of the day.
  • Clarke canned two free throws with 1:46 left to make it a one-point game but Kiss was able to hit a pair on the other end.
  • On the ensuing possession, Elisias blocked back-to-back shots underneath the hoop and Tyler Thomas’, the NEC’s leading scorer, missed an open three to tie it. Kiss grabbed the carom and then hit both free throws to make it 85-80 with 1:07 to go.
  • The Pioneers would get a pair of free throws and had the ball with 11 seconds left following a Bryant miss. Clarke’s three point attempt was off the mark, however.

Stats

  • Bryant finished 31-of-62 (50.0 percent), 8-of-26 from three (30.8 percent) and 15-of-24 (62.5 percent) from the line.
  • Sacred Heart outrebounded Bryant, 41-34.
  • The Bulldogs turned the ball over just nine times. Bryant also led the way in fast-break points (20-8) and points in the paint (44-40).
  • Kiss scored 33 points, two shy of his career high, on 12-of-22 shooting. He was 4-of-10 from three and made 5-of-8 from the line.
  • Pride added 18 points on 6-of-11 shooting from the field and a 6-of-7 mark at the line. He added five boards and three assists.
  • Eleeda had 14 points on 4-of-10 shooting from three.
  • Greg Calixte had nine points, grabbed four boards and blocked three shots.
  • Despite scoring just six points, Elisias had five boards and five blocks.
  • Hurtado Jr. chipped in six boards and six assists in 24 turnover-free minutes.
  • Brelsford had two points, two boards and four assists in 14 turnover-free minutes.

Game Notes

  • Bryant is now 8-19 against the Pioneers at the DI level and has won two-straight in the series.
  • It is Bryant’s first regular-season home win over Sacred Heart since Jan. 16, 2014 and the first back-to-back wins for the Bulldogs they won three-straight in the series in 2013 and 2014.
  • Bryant’s 85 points are a season-high against a Division I opponent. The nine turnovers also match a season-low.
  • Kiss finished two shy of his career-high and is the first Bulldog since Adam Grant (2018-19) to post multiple 30-point scoring outings in a single season.
  • Kiss is averaging 22.7 ppg is last three outings and leads the NEC with 20.0 ppg on the year. He has scored in double-figures in 29 of his 32 games as a Bulldog.
  • Elisias now has 404 career rebounds, becoming just the seventh-player in DI program history to surpass 400 career rebounds.
  • Friday marked his ninth game of 3+ blocks this year and the 32nd of his Bryant career. Elisias blocked 11 shots in two games this week.
  • Pride now has 715 career points and 395 career rebounds.
  • Eleeda has now scored in double-figures in four-straight games. He has hit at least four threes in all four contests and leads Bryant with 3.1 3pFG/game.

Up NextBryant hits the road next week for a pair of NEC games. The Bulldogs visit preseason favorite Wagner on Jan. 6 and Fairleigh Dickinson on Jan. 8.

Categories: College Sports, Sports