Dec. 4, 2010
PRINCETON, N.J. - Saint Joseph's (3-4) will play its third game in five days and close out the road swing when it visits Princeton on Sunday at Jadwin Gymnasium. Game time is 5 p.m.
The contest can also be heard on WNTP Radio (990 AM) with the Saint Joseph's Sports Network team of Matt Martucci and Joe Lunardi calling the action. The audio stream is available free of charge on SJUHawks.com.
GAME NOTES: LAST TIME OUT: Saint Joseph's late second-half rally wasn't enough as the Hawks fell to rival and 12th-ranked Villanova, 71-60, at The Pavilion in the Philadelphia Big 5 opener for both teams. Carl Jones led the Hawks with 19 points, and freshman C.J. Aiken blocked a career-high seven shots. Down by 20 points in the second half, the Hawks' Daryus Quarles and Charoy Bentley hit consecutive threes during a late 9-0 run to move the Hawks within 11 points, while a jumper by Langston Galloway pulled SJU to 69-60 with 40 seconds to play. But Villanova's Corey Stokes hit two free throws at :33 to provide the final double-digit margin. SJU came out strong in the first half and held the very early lead before Villanova went on a 6-0 run to take a 16-11 edge. Saint Joseph's would cut VU's lead to 20-18 on five consecutive points from Jones, but the Wildcats outscored the Hawks, 12-5, in the last five minutes of the period to take a 38-28 lead at the break. Villanova used another 12-5 run to start the second half, and within five minutes, held a commanding 50-33 lead. The Wildcats led by as much as 21 points, but SJU's young group refused to quit. Quarles scored 12 for the Hawks and Idris Hilliard added 10 points.
JUST AROUND THE CORNER: The Hawks are finishing up a three-game "road" swing, but the total round-trip distance is just 125.2 miles. SJU drove 5.6 miles to Drexel on Wednesday night and rode 6.7 miles to Villanova on Friday. The Hawks traveled 50.3 miles to Princeton for today's game.
NO REST FOR THE WEARY: This is the third game in five days for Saint Joseph's, closing out their "NBA-type" schedule for the past week.
FROM THE LINE: Free-throw shooting has been one of the Hawks' strengths as they rank fourth in the Atlantic 10 in free throw percentage, hitting 70.8 percent. But they shot a season-worst 28.6 percent from the line at Villanova, going just 2-of-7. Overall, Langston Galloway is 9-for-9 from the line while Carl Jones is hitting 80 percent, to tie for fifth in the A-10.
REBOUNDING WOES: One of SJU's glaring weaknesses last season was its rebounding and that problem resurfaced in the loss to Drexel. The Hawks were outrebounded by an overwhelming 46-23 margin, and they followed that with a 48-34 margin at Villanova. On the season, SJU has a -5.4 margin; last year the Hawks were at -8.0.
CLASSIC CHAMPS: Saint Joseph's was crowned as the champions of the Philly Hoop Group Classic, winning all three games against Norfolk State, Fairfield and Rutgers.
JONES-IN': Leading scorer Carl Jones has recorded double-figures in all seven games and has a streak of nine games dating back to last year. The sophomore is the Hawks' top free-throw shooter, converting 80 percent, which included an 11-for-12 effort in the win over Norfolk State. Jones made 8-for-8 from the line in the final 1:03 to preserve the win.
TOP ROOKIE: Langston Galloway earned Atlantic 10 Rookie of the Week and Big 5 Player of the Week honors after his performance in the Fairfield and Rutgers wins. The freshman averaged 17.5 points, 4.0 rebounds and 4.5 assists while shooting 82.3 percent (14-for-17) from the floor and 83.3 percent (5-for-6) from three-point range. He scored a season-best 20 points on 7-for-8 shooting in the win over Rutgers, handing out a game-high assists while committing just one turnover. In a victory at Fairfield, Galloway led the Hawks with 15 points connecting on 7-of-9 shots from the floor while collecting five rebounds, three blocks and two steals. He is the first Hawk to receive a weekly honor this season.
BLOCK PARTY: Freshman C.J. Aiken had six blocks in the second half in the win at Fairfield, which was the highest total for a Hawk since Ahmad Nivins had the same number at UMass on Jan. 9, 2008. Langston Galloway added three in the game as the Hawks totalled 11 blocks, which was the most since they had 10 vs. Syracuse on Nov. 13, 2007. Aiken upped his season best with seven blocks at Villanova. He is averaging 3.6 per game and leads the Atlantic 10, while ranking 21st in the nation. Saint Joseph's tops the A-10 with 5.7 blocks per game.
LOOKING AHEAD: The Hawks return home after five games away from Hagan Arena to host #15 Minnesota on Wednesday. SJU then travels to Creighton on Saturday.