Jan. 20, 2009
PHILADELPHIA - Saint Joseph's (9-7; 3-0 A-10) will seek its fifth consecutive win on Wednesday, January 21, when it hosts Duquesne (12-5; 3-1) at The Palestra. Game time is 7 p.m.
The Saint Joseph's Sports Network team of Matt Martucci and Joe Lunardi will broadcast the game on WNTP (990 AM). Streaming audio will also be available on www.sjuhawks.com free of charge as provided by Stretch Internet. Streaming video will also be available thru a subscription to Hawks' All-Access.
Tickets are still available for the game by calling 610-660-1712. It marks the first game back for the SJU students as they began the second semester on January 20.
Fans are advised that beginning with the Duquesne game, parking in Lot #5, between Franklin Field and The Palestra, will no longer be accessible. Click here for a map of alternate locations.
GAME NOTES: The Hawks are riding a four-game winning streak, which is their longest of the year and longest since a five-game winning streak from Jan. 19- Feb.4 of 2008. SJU has not yet lost in the calendar year of 2009. A win tonight would give the Hawks their best A-10 start since 2004-05 when they went 4-0. Senior Ahmad Nivins tops the Hawks with a league-leading eight double-doubles and is averaging a team-high 19.6 points and 11.0 rebounds. Ahmad Nivins leads the A-10 in field goal percentage (.665) and ranks third nationally. He also tops the league in rebounding (11.0), offensive rebounds (4.5) and minutes played (39.3), while ranking among the conference's top 10 in eight categories. Ahmad Nivins was named the Big 5 Co-Player of the Week for Jan. 19 and the third time this season. The senior averaged 20.5 points and 11.5 rebounds in two wins, while shoooting 11-for-19 from the field.
LAST TIME OUT: Ahmad Nivins had 25 points and 10 rebounds, going 13-for-13 from the free-throw line in the second half, to lead Saint Joseph's to a 78-69 victory over Charlotte. Tasheed Carr added 17 and Darrin Govens had 11 for the Hawks, who won their season-best fourth in a row. Nivins finished 13-of-15 from the free throw line as Saint Joseph's hit its final 19 free throw attempts and finished 22-of-26. A three-point play by Nivins gave Saint Josephs a 66-55 lead with 6:17 remaining. The 49ers responded with a 9-2 run to close within 68-64. They got within 70-66 with 2:32 left, but the Hawks scored the next eight points to seal the win.
SEEING DOUBLE: Ahmad Nivins has now scored in double figures in 74 of the 110 games of his career and in 28 consecutive games. He's grabbed double-figure rebounds 21 times, with a league-leading nine double-doubles this season alone. The senior has 19 career double-doubles.
JUST WARMING UP: Phil Martelli's teams are known for their strong play as the season progresses, especially during the conference slate. In the past four years, the Hawks have headed into January with a combined 22-19 record (53.6 winning pct.). But during the conference regular season (counting this season), Saint Joseph's has compiled a 44-23 record (65.6%). This season, SJU was 5-7 at the end of December and has since won four in a row to start 2009, with a 3-0 conference record.
SHARING THE BALL: The Hawks had an impressive 21 assists on 23 field goals against Charlotte. Overall, SJU is averaging 15.6 assists per game.
DOUBLE HEADER : Ahmad Nivins has been averaging a double-double all season and would join a select group of Hawks if he finishes the year that way. The last Hawk to average a double-double was Dwayne Jones in 2004-05, with his averages of 10.1 points and 11.6 rebounds. Prior to Jones, Will Johnson was the last one to notch the double-double in 1995-96 (10.5 ppg; 10.2 rpg). Since 1952-53, the feat has been accomplished 29 times by a total of 16 different players.
AHMAD'S ACCOLADES: Ahmad Nivins continues to compile the weekly honors this season. He was named the Big 5 Co-Player of the Week for Jan. 19, marking the third time he's received the city's honor. Nivins earned the nod by averaging 20.5 points and 11.5 rebounds in the Hawks' 2-0 week. He has also been named the Atlantic 10 Co-Player of the Week four times thus far (Nov. 16, Dec. 7, Dec. 28, Jan. 11), which is the most by any player this year.
NO HARM, NO FOUL: The Hawks have done a good job limiting the fouls this year, and there was no better example than the St. Bonaventure game. SJU committed just 10 fouls in the game and limited the Bonnies to just eight trips to the foul line - going into the game, SBU was averaging 16 free throws made and 25 attempts. Ahmad Nivins has done a good job of staying out of foul trouble as he's committed only 29 fouls in 16 games (1.8 average) and has no disqualifications.
CARR SHOW: Senior Tasheed Carr has scored double figures in the past five of six games, averaging 14.3 points in that stretch. Carr scored 14 points in the first half vs. Ball State, helping the Hawks overcome an early 10-point deficit and take the lead by halftime. He finished that game with 18 points while scoring 19 in the loss to Drexel. He had 14 against Rhode Island, while handing out six assists.
BIG SHOTS: Darrin Govens is the team's leader with 42 3-pointers, but his biggest one so far was one with :04 left in the second overtime against Rhode Island. Govens' three gave the Hawks an 80-77 lead until the Rams hit one at the buzzer to force the third overtime. The junior, who made 3-of-6 against URI, is converting 37.8 percent on the season.
LOOKING AHEAD: The Hawks finish the three-game homestand by "hosting" Penn in a Big 5 clash on Saturday, Jan. 24. SJU then goes on the road for two straight at Richmond on Jan. 28 and at Dayton on Feb. 1.