Men's Basketball Opens Practice on Saturday
Courtesy: SJU Athletic Communications  
Release:  10/15/2004

Oct. 15, 2004

PHILADELPHIA - Coming off the most successful season in school history, and one that captured the attention of the nation, the Saint Joseph's men's basketball team returns to the court to begin practice for the 2004-05 season on Saturday, October 16.

Phil Martelli, the consensus national Coach of the Year in 2003-04, welcomes a squad with three returning starters from last year's team which went 30-2 and made the run to the NCAA Elite Eight, falling just two points shy of the Final Four.

Seniors Pat Carroll and John Bryant and junior Dwayne Jones are the returning starters for the squad which aims to become the first SJU team in 40 years to make three straight NCAA Tournament appearances and the first-ever Atlantic 10 team to win five regular-season titles.

Carroll and Bryant have been elected co-captains by their teammates. Carroll, a 6-5 swing player, is the only Hawk returning with a double-figure scoring average. One of the nation's top three-point shooters, Carroll enters the season as the Atlantic 10's all-time leader in career three-point field goal percentage (.454).

Bryant, a 6-7 forward, brings experience and leadership to the squad. The fifth-year senior, who is currently attending graduate school in business, adds the intangibles that don't necessarily show up in the boxscore.

The Hawks open the season on November 23 with a trip to Kansas to face the Jayhawks on national television (ESPN2). Saint Joseph's has two "home" games at the Palestra on November 27 against Davidson and December 4 versus Drexel in the Big 5 Classic, before opening the season at Alumni Memorial Fieldhouse on December 7 against Fairfield.

Saint Joseph's version of "Midnight Madness" will be held on Friday, October 22 at Alumni Memorial Fieldhouse beginning at 9 p.m. The event, geared towards students, will have contests and games as well as the introduction of the 2004-05 men's and women's basketball teams. Admission is free.