March 12, 2005
Saint Joseph's fell short in its bid for the Atlantic 10 title, despite another solid performance from Pat Carroll, as George Washington won the championship, 76-67, at U.S. Bank Arena. Carroll had 25 points and was named the Most Outstanding Player of the Championship.
Saint Joseph's, now 19-11, will await its postseason fate on Sunday evening.
Dwayne Jones joined Carroll on the All-Tournament team.
Despite shooting just 24.1 percent in the first half, the Hawks trailed by only 22-20 at halftime.
The Hawks came out strong in the second half. After going 0-for-7 in the first half, Chet Stachitas hit six straight shots. Carroll also heated up and the Hawks built their lead to 44-37 with 10:22 to play.
GW then went on a 7-0 spurt to tie the game and eventually outscored the Hawks, 21-5, to take a 49-58 lead with 3:29 to play.
Saint Joseph's would cut the deficit to 62-57 with 1:34 to go, but could not come any closer.
"They have tremendous quickness, a lot of balance," coach Phil Martelli said. "And I think their balance did us in with 8 minutes left. Our defense let down and with their quickness, they were able to exploit it."
Stachitas finished with 17 points and Jones had his 16th double-double of the year with 13 points and 15 rebounds.
One of the worst free throw shooting teams in the nation, the Hawks went a season-best 14-for-14 from the foul line.
"We ended up 16-5 in our last 21 games," Carroll said. "That speaks a lot to the coaching staff getting players to believe we were a good team when we started 3-6. The coaches turned our attitude and we started believing in ourselves."