Bryant beats St. Francis (Pa.) 77-67

SMITHFIELD, R.I. -- Alex Francis scored 23 on Thursday night and Bryant rode a strong first-half effort to a 77-67 victory against St. Francis (Pa.) in both teams' Northeast Conference opener.

The Bulldogs (9-7) opened the game on a 15-5 run and surged to its largest lead of the game at 32-13 with 6:40 remaining in the first half. Bryant had a 19-point lead again 4 minutes later and went into the intermission up 44-27.

Corey Maynard added 18 points, seven rebounds and four steals and Dyami Starks scored 16 with 4-of-6 3-point shooting for Bryant.

The Red Flash (2-12) went 10 of 17 from 3-point range and outscored Bryant 40-33 in the second half. But they never challenged to closer than a 9-point deficit after the break and committed 17 turnovers overall.

Earl Brown had 10 points and 11 rebounds while Ollie Jackson and Ben Millaud-Meunier both scored 13 for St. Francis.