DaRon Holmes II tied a career high with 34 points, putting up 25 after halftime, as No. 21 Dayton posted a 76-71 win over visiting St. Bonaventure on Friday.
Enoch Cheeks added 13 points for the Flyers (18-3, 8-1 Atlantic 10), who have won for the eighth time in their past nine meetings with the Bonnies. Isaac Jack chipped in eight points and six rebounds off the Dayton bench.
Mika Adams-Woods led St. Bonaventure (13-8, 4-5) with 17 points off the bench, while Chad Venning and Charles contributed 11 points apiece. Pride grabbed a game-high 11 rebounds.
After falling behind by seven points early in the second half, Dayton took a 40-38 lead thanks to a 9-0 run that included five points from Holmes.
Kobe Elvis’ jump shot gave the Flyers a 52-48 edge with 8:44 left before the Bonnies clawed back to tie the game at 54 on an Assa Essamvous triple at the 7:24 mark.
St. Bonaventure was held scoreless over the next 4:21 while Dayton went on another 9-0 scoring run.
Dayton looked to be in control after Holmes’ layup made it a 10-point lead with 1:58 left, but a pair of Adams-Woods 3-pointers cut the deficit to four with 1:11 to go.
Four consecutive free throws pushed Dayton’s lead back to eight. Adams-Woods then responded with two free throws, and a turnover by the Flyers’ Javon Bennett led to a Moses Flowers 3-pointer that sliced the difference to 72-69 with 21 seconds to go.
From there, Holmes hit two free throws and added a layup to cement the victory.
Dayton jumped out to a 7-0 lead before the Bonnies finally scored their first points on a Venning jumper 5 1/2 minutes into the game.
After another Venning bucket cut St. Bonaventure’s deficit to 9-4, back-to-back dunks from Holmes and Enoch pushed the lead to nine points at the 12:03 mark, forcing a Bonnies timeout.
From there, St. Bonaventure went on a 21-11 run, taking its first lead of the game on Pride’s layup with 2:47 left.
A pair of free throws by Bennett knotted the score at 28 with 32 seconds remaining in the first half before Adams-Woods beat the buzzer with a midrange jumper, giving the Bonnies a 30-28 halftime lead.
Pride, Venning and Barry Evans led the Bonnies with six first-half points apiece, while Holmes and Cheeks paced Dayton with nine in the opening half.
–Field Level Media
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