The Villanova Wildcats squeaked by the Bucknell Bison by the score of 68-52 on Friday night in the season opener for both programs. Corey Fisher led the way for Villanova with 24 points and 3 assists. Maalik Wayns looks ready to step up in a big way as well as he finished with 15 points and 6 assists.
This one wasn't as easy as the final score indicated though. Fisher was clutch down the stretch to extend the lead into coasting territory, but Bucknell was able to close the gap to single-digits multiple times in the 2nd half thanks to some strong 3-point shooting.
Bucknell star Mike Muscala was held in check all night by Antonio Pena and Mouphtaou Yarou, finishing with just 10 points on 4-12 shooting. Pena and Yarou look like they'll provide some serious muscle inside for 'Nova, as they collectively snared 15 rebounds and blocked 2 shots apiece.
This was a sloppy game overall though, with Bucknell content to slow the pace as much as possible, and neither team shot the ball particularly well. 'Nova was forced into 9 turnovers (most of them of their own doing) in the 1st half, but was able to get things under control after the break.
Things don't get easier for Bucknell as they'll face the Marquette Golden Eagles on Sunday. Villanova comes back on Tuesday night to face the Marist Red Foxes.
Video highlights are after The Jump.