Fordham Men’s Basketball Annihilated in Mid-Week Showdown With George Mason, 77-45

Rams come out flat in second half, suffering a devastating loss at the hands of the Patriots



Joel Soriano, FCRH ’23, was largely contained by George Mason’s defense in a crushing Fordham defeat.


The Fordham men’s basketball team hit the road to face off against George Mason University (GMU) on Wednesday evening. The team left for Fairfax, Virginia, with the hope of carrying positive momentum from their previous win but floundered against the Patriots, losing by a score of 77-45. 

Despite entering Wednesday’s competition with a dreadful 2-9 record on the season, the stakes were high for Fordham. With the Atlantic 10 (A10) Tournament on the horizon, the Rams’ visit to Virginia presented an opportunity to narrow the gap between them and George Mason. While the Patriots entered the game with a relatively strong 8-8 record this season, their conference record stood at just 4-6. 

Wednesday’s game offered the Rams a chance to improve their standing in the A10 conference and earn a surprisingly good playoff position despite a poor season. Evidently, Fordham failed to capitalize on the opportunity.

Powered by flaming three-point shooting (8-for-11 from three in the second half) and stifling defense (10 total steals and four total blocks), the Patriots outscored Fordham 44-20 in the second half.

The game started off fairly ordinarily, with both teams playing sloppily yet hitting shots to keep the competition close. The Rams leaned on the three ball early, with their first three made field goals coming from behind the arc.

Turnovers plagued both teams throughout the first half. By the 14:45 mark, Fordham had already committed four turnovers, allowing the Patriots to claim a six-point lead, 12-6. 

Soon after, George Mason suffered a tumultuous stretch which allowed the Rams to climb back into the game. From the 13:00 mark to the 10:00 mark, the Patriots forfeited three turnovers, culminating in a shooting foul behind the arc on Fordham guard Ty Perry, Fordham College at Rose Hill (FCRH) ’22. Perry hit two of three free throws to give the Rams a 17-16 lead. 

The Patriots finished the half strong, holding Fordham to just eight points from the 10:00 mark through the end of the period. George Mason’s main source of success in the latter portion of the first stemmed from their ability to force turnovers on defense.

Despite suffering seven turnovers of their own in the first, the Patriots forced an astonishing 11 turnovers by the Rams. Fordham’s carelessness with the ball and inability to score late in the first half resulted in the Rams entering halftime trailing by a manageable deficit of 33-25.

george mason player on the left and a fordham player making a basket on the right
Kyle Rose, FCRH ’23, shoots over a George Mason defender on a particularly unproductive day for Fordham. (COURTESY OF FORDHAM ATHLETICS)

The Fordham team that came out to start the second half hardly resembled that of the first half. Fordham star forward Joel Soriano, FCRH ’23, scored the first points of the half to cut the lead to six. Inexplicably and inexcusably, those would be the only points scored by Fordham for five minutes and 28 seconds. During that stretch, the Patriots scored 16 consecutive points fueled by four three-pointers. 

This demoralizing barrage all but buried the Rams, who now found themselves losing by 22 points, but George Mason didn’t stop there. Powered by flaming three-point shooting (8-for-11 from three in the second half) and stifling defense (10 total steals and four total blocks), the Patriots outscored Fordham 44-20 in the second half.

One reason for a lack of success on the offensive end by the Rams could be George Mason’s containment of Soriano. From the jump, the Patriots doubled the Fordham big any time he touched the ball in the paint. The resulting swarming defense pushed Fordham’s guards off the three point line. In this way, George Mason managed to neutralize the two focal points of Fordham’s offense: Soriano’s interior presence and efficient three-point shooting.

The Rams shot 8-31 (25.8%) from the field and 1-9 (11.1%) from beyond the three-point line in the second half. These numbers likely wouldn’t have won them the game even if the Patriots hadn’t managed to score 44 points in the second half. 

George Mason guards Jordan Miller, GMU ’22, and Javon Greene, GMU ’21, led the Patriots in scoring with 16 and 14 points, respectively. First-year guard Otis Frazier III, GMU ’24, provided a spark off the bench for the Patriots, connecting on three of four shots for nine points.

Fordham will look to turn things around as the final stage of the season rapidly approaches. The Rams will return home to play the Saint Louis Billikens in a weekend showdown on Feb. 13. The team will look to manufacture whatever momentum it can as the A10 championship tournament draws near.