March 10, 2006
CINCINNATI - Saint Joseph's will meet a familiar foe with a berth in the Atlantic 10 championship on the line, when the Hawks take on Temple tonight in the A-10 Semifinals. The game will be broadcast in Philadelphia on Comcast SportsNet at 6:30 p.m.
Fifth-seeded SJU (17-12) defeated Saint Louis in the quarterfinals while 9th-seeded Temple (17-13) upset top seeded and number six ranked George Washington. Saint Joseph's is the highest remaining seed in the tournament as all of the top four seeds failed to advance to the semifinals for the first time in conference history.
The game will be broadcast on the Saint Joseph's Sports Network via SportsTalk 950 (WPEN-AM) with Phil Denne and Joe Lunardi calling the action.
The contest is an A-10 TV Network broadcast and can also be seen regionally on the following outlets: Fox Sports Ohio; Comcast SportsNet (PA, DC), WGSR; Time Warner Rochester; Charter; Cox (RI) and Adelphia, as well as ESPN Full Court.
Click here for streaming audio and live stats.
SAINT JOSEPH'S NOTES:
SJU's seven-game winning streak is the longest of the season and the longest since the 2003-04 regular season, when the Hawks went 27-0. Last year's team put together a five-game streak during the NIT, winning five games to reach the NIT Finals.
SJU is seeking a berth in the championship game for the second consecutive year and the fourth time in school history. The Hawks are also seeking their first win over Temple in seven meetings in the A-10 Tournament.
Against Saint Louis, Chet Stachitas played his 126th game in a Hawk uniform, and now holds the mark with 127, after breaking Jameer Nelson's record of 125. Dwayne Lee is one game behind as he will play his 126th today.
A-10 Tournament History: The teams have met seven times in the A-10 Tournament, with Temple winning all of them... The last time was the 1998 tourney when TU scored a 76-52 win in the quarterfinals.
INJURY REPORT: The Hawks suffered a key injury in the Saint Louis game when freshman Ahmad Nivins went down with a sprained ankle (left). He is doubtful for today. The injury has been diagnosed as a grade-2 sprain.
SENIOR MOMENTS: Phil Martelli has credited the seniors for the Hawks' late-season push and they've certainly carried the team. Chet Stachitas had a game-high 17 points while grabbing a career-high nine rebounds in the win over Saint Louis. Although Dwayne Lee only scored eight points, he kept up the Hawks' pace on offense. Lee, who was snubbed on the A-10 All-Defensive team, had three steals, but harassed A-10 Rookie of the Year Tommie Liddell into a 2-for-8 shooting performance and five turnovers.
STINGY "D": The Hawks have held their opponents to an average of 46.0 in the two tournament games thus far.
DEPTH CHARGES: The Hawks bench will be pushed to the limit if Ahmad Nivins cannot play today. Phil Martelli has been using mainly a seven-man rotation, with Nivins getting 23 minutes per game. Freshman Alvin Mofunanya will most likely get the call for extra minutes. Mofunanya has seen action in 17 games, but is averaging only 5.2 minutes. His most significant action of the year came when he started the St. Bonaventure and Villanova games because of Dave Mallon's ankle injury. Mofunanya had a career-high 13 points in 21 minutes vs. the Bonnies.
SJU IN THE SEMIS: The Hawks are making their fifth berth in the A-10 semifinals under Phil Martelli and the 12th overall. Last year, the Hawks defeated Xavier in the semifinals to make their third appearance in the A-10 championship game. SJU won the A-10 title in 1986 and 1997, and was the runner-up last year.