Iona’s A.J. English and St. Peter’s Desi Washington were each suspended one game for their roles in last Saturday’s benches clearing brawl.
The Gaels, the top team in the MAAC, didn’t have time to celebrate their 68-61 overtime win over the Peacocks as tempers flared shortly after the final buzzer. Caught in the middle of the heated exchanged was English and Washington. At one point, one of the referees removed English from the scuffle, only to be tossed aside by the 6-foot-5 shooting guard.
Both schools announced one-game suspensions for their respective players.
“Saint Peter’s places a high premium on sportsmanship and we will continue to be a strong proponent of this fundamental principle throughout our athletic programs and the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference,” St. Peter’s athletic director Joe Quinlan said in a statement, via NJ.com.
Iona described English’s actions, and subsquent punishment as, “the initiation of an unsportsmanlike incident,” according to a statement from the university, obtained by Ryan Restivo of NYCBuckets.com.
English is arguably the conference’s top player, averaging 20.7 points, 5.7 rebounds and 5.6 assists per game. He will miss Friday night’s game against Siena. He will be available for Sunday afternoon against Marist. Washington, St. Peter’s leading scorer at 14.5 points per game, will sit out Saturday’s matchup with Fairfield.
Iona and St. Peter’s face each other once more, in the regular season finale on March 1.