Bridgeport, CT (Sports Network) - Derek Needham scored 17 points and drained the game-winning 3-pointer with just five seconds remaining to lift the Fairfield Stags to a 66-64 victory over the Iona Gaels in a Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference bout at Webster Bank Arena.
Needham connected on 4-of-9 from beyond the arc for Fairfield (17-11, 9-7 MAAC), which has conquered seven of its last eight games. Justin Jenkins (12 points, five assists) and Maurice Barrow (10 points, eight rebounds) were both impressive off the bench for the Stags, while Amadou Sidibe added nine points and nine boards.
For Iona (15-11, 9-7), Lamont Jones paced all scorers with 29 points, doing so on 9-of-17 from the field and 10-of-11 from the free-throw line. Sean Armand had 14 points and David Laury chipped in 12 points, six rebounds, three blocks and three steals for the Gaels, who have lost two in a row and five of their last six.
Iona jumped out to an 11-point lead with less than eight minutes to play in the first half, but Fairfield climbed back to make its deficit just one, 34-33, heading into halftime.
The teams traded several leads in the second half before the Gaels found themselves up seven, 61-54, following a Tavon Sledge 3-pointer with 3:48 to play. The Stags answered quickly, ripping off nine straight points to take a 63-61 advantage with 63-61 left. Jones delivered the counter strike for Iona on its next possession, converting a traditional three-point play to give his team a one-point lead, but Fairfield took advantage of its last opportunity when Needham drilled the game-winner from long range. Armand's jumper at the buzzer did not fall and the Stags escaped with the win.
Fairfield held a dominating 39-27 advantage on the boards.