University Of Dayton Flyers

No. 16 Dayton gets tough home win over Fordham

Photo of DaRon Holmes II. Photo courtesy of Rick Roshto

DAYTON — The No. 16 Dayton Flyers finished strong in a close game Saturday afternoon against the Fordham Rams in a 78-70 victory at the UD Arena.

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DaRon Holmes II led the way with 29 points and 10 rebounds. He scored seven of the team’s last nine points over the last 3:33 of the game.

UD led 69-68 with 3:42 remaining but Holmes’ fastbreak dunk stretched it 71-68.

Three other Flyers scored in double figures. Javon Bennett had 14 points, Enoch Cheeks added 12, and Nate Santos scored 11 points.

Dayton improves to 21-4 overall (11-2 in the Atlantic 10). They are also now 13-0 at the UD Arena.

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UD led 44-35 at halftime and Holmes scored to open the second and gave them their largest lead of the game, 46-35. Fordham went on a 14-2 run to take a 49-48 lead with 15:05 to go.

Elvis and Holmes combined to score the Flyers’ next 11 points to take a 60-54 lead with 11:25 remaining.

Santos made two of three fouls to extend to advantage to 66-59 at the 8:20 mark. But the Rams scored seven straight points capped by Kyle Rose’s layup to tie it 66-66 at the 5:51 mark.

Holmes scored with 5:51 left to to Flyers on top for good, 68-66.

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Jephet Meador’s basket cut it to 69-68 with 3:42 to go, but Holmes’ fastbreak dunk got the UD Arena crowd to its feet with 3:33 remaining and Dayton led 71-68.

Santos made two free throws increased it to 73-68 but Antrell Charlton’s bucket cut it to 73-70 with 2:07 to go. Holmes responded with a basket to extend it to 75-70 with 1:37 to play. He sealed the game making three of four free throws.

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Coach Anthony Grant said after the game that the team locked in and did the things they needed to do in the last five minutes to win this game to remain perfect at home.

“Our guys were able to answer the bell,” he said. “I think it means a lot to our guys to protect our home court.”

He said one of the team’s goals this season was to go undefeated at home this season.

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Bennett injured his ankle Tuesday night against Duquesne but played 29 minutes. He said after the game that he worked with the training staff to get ready for Saturday’s game.

“It was pretty much a game-time decision,” he said after the game. “I never even practiced, I had a workout (Friday) to see how I feel and I felt good. Woke up (Saturday)) and it felt good, so it was all right.”

Cheeks has also scored in double figures in four of the last five games.

Dayton’s next game will be Wednesday night at 7 p.m. when they travel to Fairfax, Virginia to play George Mason.

Pregame coverage on WHIO Radio begins at 6 p.m. The game will be also carried here at

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