Feb. 5, 2007
VILLANOVA, PA - Saint Joseph's (13-9) visits Villanova (on Tuesday, Feb. 6 for the annual Big 5 rivalry game to be televised nationally on ESPN2 at 7 p.m. from The Pavilion. The Hawks are 2-0 in the Big 5 while Villanova is 3-0.
Sean McDonough and Bill Raftery will call the action on ESPN2 while Tom McCarthy and Joe Lunardi will broadcast the game on WNTP Radio (990 AM). The game can also be heard via audio streaming on www.sjuhawks.com.
GAME NOTES Pat Calathes has made 31 consecutive free throws. His last miss came in the Rhode Island game, when he went an uncharacteristic 0-for-3, and he's now shooting 84.8 percent on the season. The school record is 37 consecutive set by Delonte West in 2003-04. For the second straight year, Saint Joseph's and Villanova are both undefeated in Big 5 play at the time of their meeting. Last year, the teams played for the outright title, with VU winning at the Palestra. The Hawks still have one more city game to go after this, facing La Salle on Saturday (Feb. 10) at the Palestra. The Hawks are in the midst of a six-game stretch of games in Philadelphia. The only game not at the Fieldhouse or Palestra is the visit to Villanova on Feb. 6. SJU is currently 2-1 during this stretch. Pat Calathes has now recorded double-doubles in three consecutive games and four on the year. He's now the team's leading rebounder with 7.3 per game. Ahmad Nivins ranks second in the Atlantic 10 in field goal percentage, hitting 62.5% of his shots. In the two Big 5 games thus far, the Hawks have four players averaging double figures - Ahmad Nivins (19.5), Pat Calathes (18.5), Rob Ferguson (16.0) and Darrin Govens (11.5). In those two wins (Temple, Penn), the Hawks have averaged 82.0 points per game.
THIS TIME LAST YEAR: Last year's Saint Joseph's-Villanova game (Feb. 7, 2006) celebrated the 50th anniversary of the Big 5 and was played on a neutral court at the Palestra. The occasion marked the first-ever Big 5 game which was played between the two schools on Dec. 14, 1955. In last year's contest, SJU got off to a strong start, shooting 50% in the first half and owning a 34-22 lead at halftime. Villanova came back strong in the second half, as SJU made only one of its first 11 shots in that half. The Wildcats led by as many as 16 points and SJU could get no closer than 10 points.
PHIL IT UP: Phil Martelli surpassed Hall of Famer and SJU coaching legend Jack Ramsay for second place on the all-time victories list, notching his 235th with the win over Dayton. Martelli is now in sole possession of second place on the list behind Bill Ferguson, who amassed 309 victories as Hawks' head coach from 1928 to 1953. Ramsay compiled a 234-72 record in 11 seasons. Martelli's record stands at 235-134 in 12 years.
INJURY REPORT: Arvydas Lidzius suffered a fracture in the frontal bone over his left eye practice on Jan. 15 and is still sidelined indefinitely, with a reevaluation by doctors slated for later this week. He will have to wear a protective mask when he returns. Rockwell Moody is probable after spraining his left ankle in practice on Jan. 30 and missing the past two games. It was the Hawks' fourth sprained ankle of the year. The injury was also suffered by Ahmad Nivins, Rob Ferguson and Garrett Williamson, but only Nivins missed action (1 game) because of it.
MONEY IN THE BANK: Rob Ferguson and Pat Calathes are almost automatic at the free-throw line, with Ferguson converting 84.8 percent and Calathes hitting 81.5 percent. Calathes is in the midst of a streak of 31 consecutive free throws made, just six short of the record (37) set by Delonte West in 2003-04.
ALL-AROUND GUY: Pat Calathes is among the Hawks' leaders in practically every category and tops the team in rebounding (7.3) and assists (3.6), while ranking second on the squad in scoring (13.9). The 6-10 guard/forward has scored double figures in all but four games and has a current streak of 11 in a row, with three consecutive double-doubles. He ranks among the conference's leaders in seven different categories.
CITY RIVALRY: Saint Joseph's is 2-0 in the Big 5 after wins over Temple and Penn. Last season, SJU went 3-1 in the Big 5, suffering its lone loss to Villanova in the game that decided the outright title. SJU has won a total of 19 Big 5 titles (9 outright/10 shared), which is second all-time to Temple's 22 titles (5 outright/17 shared). A loss to Penn on Jan. 25, 2005 snapped a 10-game Big 5 winning streak for the Hawks.
KEY TO THE CITY: SJU owns a 21-5 record against city teams over the last five seasons (counting this year). This mark counts all games against Philadelphia teams (Drexel included). The Hawks were defeated by Drexel in December of this year, but beat Temple and Penn in January.