Dec. 28, 2009
ALBANY, N.Y. - The Saint Joseph's men's basketball team (4-6) returns to action after a short break for Christmas when it visits Siena (7-4) on Tuesday, December 29. Game time at the Times Union Center is 7 p.m.
The game can be heard on WNTP Radio (990 AM) with Matt Martucci and Joe Lunardi calling the action. Audio streaming will be available free of charge on SJUHawks.com, via Stretch Internet.
GAME NOTES: The Hawks snapped their six-game winning streak with the win over Lehigh prior to Christmas. Freshman Carl Baptiste was named the Atlantic 10 Co-Rookie of the Week for Dec. 27. He had a career-high 13 points on 6-for-7 shooting in the win over Lehigh. Baptiste also posted a personal best six rebounds and had three blocks in 22 minutes of action. This marks the third time in three years that SJU and Siena have played. Saint Joseph's is 4-5 in the first game after Christmas during this decade. Two of those games have been against Siena. Phil Martelli is in his 15th season as head coach and his 25th at the University. Martelli served as an assistant coach for 10 years on the staffs of Jim Boyle and John Griffin. Saint Joseph's is celebrating the Centennial of SJU Basketball this year, as the inaugural season took place in 1909-10.
LAST TIME OUT: Saint Joseph's used a 20-2 second-half run and had five scorers in double figures to defeat Lehigh, 77-66, at Hagan Arena. The win snapped a six-game losing streak for the Hawks. Darrin Govens led the way with 15 points while freshman Carl Baptiste came off the bench to register a career-high 13 points on 6-for-7 shooting. Chris Prescott finished with 13 points on 5-for-8 shooting and Bryant Irwin finished with 11 points and nine rebounds. Garrett Williamson had eight points and a game-high 11 rebounds. Saint Joseph's led 40-38 at the half, but saw Lehigh move ahead, 48-43 with 13:32 to play. The Hawks shot poorly early in the half, making just one of their first 10 shots and two of their first 14. Lehigh took advantage and gained a 52-45 lead at 11:13. But a jumper by Prescott would start the Hawks' 20-2 run. During that spurt, SJU held Lehigh without a point for close to six minutes.
IT'S OVER: With the win over Lehigh, the Hawks ended their six-game losing streak which was the longest since 1998-99.
TOP OF THE LINE: Garrett Williamson had a solid all-around stat line against Lehigh, similar to many that he's put together during his career. He had eight points, a career-high 11 rebounds, three assists and a career-high seven steals.
BREAKING OUT: Freshman Carl Baptiste had a career game in the Lehigh win. With Todd O'Brien saddled with foul trouble, Baptiste played 15 minutes in the first half and was a perfect 6-for-6 from the field. He missed one shot in the second and finished the game with a career-high 13 points and three blocks in 22 minutes to earn A-10 Co-Rookie of the Week honors.
STOLEN GOODS: The Hawks registered 15 steals against Lehigh, which was the highest total for SJU since 2005-06.
HILLIARD'S MISS: Idris Hilliard did not play vs. Lehigh due to a "failure to comply with University and team academic standards". Bryant Irwin made the start in his place and scored 11 points and grabbed nine rebounds. Hilliard will be back in the lineup at Siena.
WHERE'S THE "D"?: The Hawks gave 97 points in back-to-back games, vs. Villanova and at Minnesota. The last time Saint Joseph's saw opponents score 90-plus points in back-to-back games was during 2001-02.
GOOD NEWS, BAD NEWS: The "bright spot" for Phil Martelli is that the Hawks have been able to put up more points than he expected going into this season and are currently averaging 72.0 points per game. The SJU scored 89 against Villanova and 74 at Minnesota, but the down side is that both opponents scored 97 points apiece. The Hawks' foes are averaging 77.6 percent.
STRIVE FOR PERFECTION: Junior Idris Hilliard was one basket short of a perfect shooting game against Villanova as he went 5-for-5 from the field and 12-for-13 from the foul line to tally a career-high 22 points. His only miss came at 8:03 of the second half. The last time a Hawk player achieved that was Delonte West at Xavier on January 17, 2004, when he went 12-for-12 from the field, 3-for-3 from 3-point range and 6-for-6 from the foul line.
FOCUS ON THE FROSH: Carl Jones and Justin Crosgile saw significant playing time against Villanova and the duo combined for 28 points, while each hitting 3-pointers in the final minutes to keep the Hawks in the game. Jones hit for 16 points and connected on 3-of-6 3-pointers while Crosgile went 4-for-5 from the foul line. Phil Martelli was happy with their competitiveness but said, "They had six turnovers. They're skillful players so that's too many. But part of it was they were at times just going too fast."
LOOKING AHEAD: The Hawks ring in the New Year against Princeton on January 2 at Hagan Arena and then open the A-10 season at Temple on January 6.