Bison take control: Flannery takes ill

Bucknell 71, Lafayette 54: The Bison took sole control of first place in the Patriot League, at least until Sunday, with their 10th straight win over Lafayette.

Chris McNaughton led three Bison in double figures with 17 points. Freshman guard John Griffin added 11 off the bench and Charles Lee had 10 for Bucknell.

The Bison held Lafayette to 1-of-53 (32 percent) shooting and limited Lafayette's leading scorer, Sean Knitter, to 3 points.

But after the game, all the talk was about Bucknell coach Pat Flannery, who was not on the Bison bench for the second half after developing what Bucknell is calling "health issues" during the pregame and the first half.

Flannery missed all of last week's win over Army due to an unspecified family emergency. Flannery also left the Army at Bucknell game last February and missed the next two games before returning for the league tournament. That illness was reportedly gastrointestinal in nature. No word on what Flannery's condition is this time.

In his story from last night, David Jones of The Patriot-News wrote:
What is apparent is this: Flannery, known for his 24-hour intensity, is not a healthy man.
Jones seemed to base that conclusion on the combination of last year's problems, last night's situation and last week's Army game, which Jones said Flannery missed due to a "personal health issue."

Jones attributed the comment on last week's game to Bucknell sports information director Jon Terry.

Here's where the confusion sets in. At the Army game, Terry said Flannery was absent due to a "family emergency," with no mention of Flannery's health being involved. And in Tom Housenick's story on last night's game, Tom still said:
The dean of league coaches missed last Saturday's home game with Army for a family emergency.
Two versions of a quote from assistant Nate Davis, who picked up his second career save by coaching the Bison in the second half, add to the mystery.

Housenick's version has Davis saying:
"He just needed a break, some things had been building up."
In Jones' story, it is slightly different:
"He needed a little break," said Davis, his eyes darting in an attempt to find the correct words. "He needed to take a step back. I'm sure he'll be back as soon as he can."
Jones did say Flannery was at home after the game and was not hospitalized. For now, that is all anybody knows.

We will try to get an update later today.
Box score | Bucknell recap | AP wrap

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