Feb. 15, 2011
PHILADELPHIA - Saint Joseph's, winner of its last two games, will host 24th-ranked Xavier (18-6; 9-1 A-10) on Wednesday, February 16 at Hagan Arena. Game time is 7 p.m. and the contest will be televised in Philadelphia on Comcast SportsNet on a tape-delay basis at 11 p.m.
Audio and video streaming of the game will be available on SJUHawks.com. The audio stream, with Matt Martucci and Joe Lunardi calling the action is available free of charge. Click here to listen.
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GAME NOTES: Leading scorer Carl Jones has scored double figures in 22 of 23 games this year, with nine games of 20-plus points. He missed the UMass game with a sprained ankle. C.J. Aiken ranks second in the nation in blocked shots and is the highest ranked freshman and only first-year player in the top 20. He leads the Atlantic 10 with 3.9 per game and 4.9 in conference games only. The nation's leader is William Mosley of NW Louisiana, with 5.0 per game. Freshman Langston Galloway was named the Atlantic 10 Rookie of the Week for the second straight week after matching his career-high with 25 points in the win over Fordham. Phil Martelli is in his 16th year as Saint Joseph's head coach, and his 26th year on Hawk Hill. Martelli owns the most Atlantic 10 wins among active coaches with 148. Today's game is part of the nationwide Jesuit Basketball Spotlight project, using basketball to raise awareness of Jesuit education. Both Saint Joseph's and Xavier are Jesuit schools. The Hawks are 3-2 this year in the JBS, having defeated Fairfield, Holy Cross and Fordham, and falling to Creighton and Saint Louis. Tonight's game is a CBS College Sports syndicated game and will be seen in Philadelphia on Comcast SportsNet on a tape-delay basis at 11 p.m. and will be televised live by Fox Sports Ohio.
LAST TIME OUT: Saint Joseph's battled back from a 16-point second half deficit to earn a 76-70 win over Fordham at the Izod Center, for its second win in a row. Ronald Roberts had a personal best 11 rebounds.
1500 CLUB: With the win over Fordham, Saint Joseph's notched its 1,500th victory in the program's history. The Hawks currently own a 1,500-1,004 record in 102 seasons. SJU is one of 35 programs to reach the plateau, joining an impressive list of basketball programs.
MARTELLI MILESTONES: Head coach Phil Martelli is closing in on a few milestones. Here's the numbers needed to reach those marks: 300 career victories - needs 4 150 Atlantic 10 victories - needs 2 He coached his 500th career game and 250th Atlantic 10 contest at Fordham on Feb. 13. Martelli has now coached the second most games in school history. Bill Ferguson, who was the Hawks' mentor from 1928 to 1953, coached 517 games, and holds the school record for victories with 309.
LANGSTON'S LINE: Langston Galloway has put together back-to-back 25-point games to help SJU to two straight wins. Against UMass, the freshman scored a career-high 25 points on 8-for-12 shooting, including 6-for-6 from 3-point range, while playing 40 minutes for the first time this year. The only blemish on Galloway's line was two missed free throws - his first misses in A-10 games this year. He followed that with 25 points at Fordham, making 7-of-13 shots and going without a turnover in 38 minutes. Galloway has tallied 20-plus points six times this year. He ranks second on the team in scoring (12.0), but leads the team in rebounding (5.7), free throw percentage (88.1) and assist/turnover ratio (2.4). Galloway has earned A-10 Rookie of the Week honors for two weeks in a row and three times this season.
MORE ON LANGSTON: Langston Galloway has definitely broken out of his "slump". In the past two games, he has connected on 15-for-25 (60%) from the field and 10-for-15 (66.7%) from 3-point range, while averaging 25 points. In the four games prior to UMass, Galloway was shooting 10-for-42 (24%) from the field and 0-for-13 from 3-point range, while averaging just 5.7 points per game.
HAWKS VS. THE POLLS: Saint Joseph's last victories over Top 25 teams came in 2007-08 when it defeated Xavier twice in a span of two weeks. The Hawks topped #8 Xavier, 71-66, on March 6, 2008, in the final game at Alumni Memorial Fieldhouse, and then beat the 12th-ranked Musketeers on March 14 in the A-10 Semifinals. Xavier is the third-ranked team the Hawks will face this year - Villanova and Minnesota were the others.
REJECTION NOTICE: Freshman C.J. Aiken continues to make his presence known in the middle with his talent for blocking shots, averaging 3.9 overall and 4.9 in A-10 games. The freshman had a season-high nine blocks twice against GW and La Salle. The school record for blocks in a game is 12 by all-time leader Rodney Blake against Cleveland State on Dec. 2, 1987. Here are Aiken's top efforts this season: 7 vs. Fordham (Feb. 13) 9 vs. La Salle (Jan. 27) 7 vs. Rhode Island (Jan. 19) 9 vs. George Washington (Jan. 8) 7 vs. Villanova (Dec. 3)
BLOCK PARTY: Led by C.J. Aiken, the Hawks top the Atlantic 10 in blocks per game, with 5.7 overall and 6.4 in league games. Aiken ranks second in the nation while Saint Joseph's ranks 12th. The school record for blocked shot average in a season is 3.8 by Rodney Blake (1985-86) and 5.7 by the 1985-86 team.
SENIOR MOMENT: Senior Charoy Bentley took advantage of the opportunity given to him in the UMass game, playing a big part in the Hawks' win. Bentley got the start in place of the injured Carl Jones and in a career-high 32 minutes, scored five points, handed out three assists and went without a turnover. He played another big role in the Fordham win, scoring a career-high 14 points on 5-for-7 shooting, with only one turnover in 23 minutes of action.
TAKING CARE OF THE BALL: The Hawks have limited the turnovers as of late, and Phil Martelli sees that as the key to the two wins. SJU had only seven turnovers in each of the past two games, and is averaging 10.3 in the last four games. On the year, Saint Joseph's is averaging 11.6 turnovers and forcing about the same number, 11.3.
TALE OF TWO HALVES: After watching Fordham heat it up from the perimeter (52% FG; 54% 3-pt FG) in the first half, the Hawks returned the favor to their hosts in the second. SJU came back from intermission and shot 60 percent from the field and 64 percent (7-for-11) from 3-point range. The Hawks erased a 16-point deficit and scored their biggest comeback win of the year.
LOOKING AHEAD: Saint Joseph's stays in Philly to visit Temple on Sunday, Feb. 20, before going back on the road to UMass on Feb. 23.