Jan. 21, 2005
AMHERST, MA - The Saint Joseph's men's basketball team will be looking to rebound from this week's loss to Dayton when the Hawks travel to Massachusetts on Saturday, January 22. Game time is noon at the Mullins Center. The contest will not be televised, but can be heard on the Saint Joseph's Sports Network on WPEN-Radio (950 AM).
About the Hawks: The Hawks saw their four-game winning streak come to an end in Dayton, with the 58-54 loss on Wednesday. SJU is 7-7 and 4-1 in the Atlantic 10.
ABOUT THE MINUTEMEN: UMass has won two in row, with victories over #21 George Washington and Fordham, improving to 9-6 overall and 3-2 in the league.
Televison/Radio: The game will not be televised. The Saint Joseph's Sports Network will broadcast the game on WPEN Radio (950 AM) with the team of Tom McCarthy and Joe Lunardi. McCarthy is in his second year as play-by-play announcer and Lunardi is in his 15th as the Hawks' color analyst. The game can also be heard via streaming audio on the Saint Joseph's website at www.sjuhawks.com.
NEXT GAME: Tue., Jan. 25 vs. Pennsylvania, The Palestra, 8 p.m., CN8
LAST TIME OUT: The Hawks fell short to Dayton, 58-54, in a hard-fought game which went to the wire. SJU took its biggest lead, 36-28, early in the second half, but saw UD storm back with a number of 3-pointers, to grab a 45-44 lead at 7:56 and then the lead for good, 50-49. Dwayne Lee's 3-pointer had the Hawks within 54-53 with 2:05 to go, but SJU then found itself trailing 56-53 with :33 left. The Hawks missed on two possible tying shots and then Lee was fouled with 10.5 seconds remaining, but the point guard made only one free throw. Chet Stachitas had 18 points and Pat Carroll scored 14 while Dwayne Jones had 11 rebounds and tied his career with six of the team's season-high 10 blocked shots.
REJECTION NOTICES: The Hawk defense got a boost from the shot-blocking abilities of its frontcourt players at Dayton. The team blocked a season-high 10 shots in the game, led by Dwayne Jones, who tied his career-high with six. John Bryant also tied his personal best with three and Rob Ferguson chipped in with one. On the season, SJU is averaging 5.0 blocks per game.
FLYING START: After suffering six early-season losses, the Hawks turned things around and won four straight Atlantic 10 games. It ranks among the best starts in conference history for SJU, which set a league record last season with a 16-0 mark. In each of these years, the Hawks have captured or shared the regular season title. The following is the list of SJU's best A-10 starts, in which there have been at least three consecutive wins: Year A-10 Start A-10 Finish 2003-04 16-0 East division title 2001-02 6-0 East division title share 2000-01 5-0 Regular season title 2004-05 4-0 TBA 2002-03 4-0 East division title
SHUTTING THEM DOWN: SJU's defense has been a key to its resurgence. In the four-game winning streak, the Hawks limited their opponents to an average of 48.0 ppg, with no team scoring more than 52 points. The Hawks have also shut down the opponent's leading scorer. Here's a rundown of the points scored by those players, with their scoring averages prior to that game in ( ). Bryant Dunston, Fordham: 9 points (14.5) Scott Hazelton, URI: 0 points - only 9 minutes w/ foul trouble (17.4) Rashaun Freeman, UMass: 6 points (14.8) Steven Smith, LS: 9 points (22.7)
DWAYNE'S WEEK: Dwayne Jones was named the Atlantic 10 Player of the Week for Jan. 15, earning the honor for the first time in his career. He was also cited as the Player of the Week in the Philadelphia Big 5 for averaging 14.5 points and 12.5 rebounds while shooting 53.3 percent from the field and 65 percent from the foul line in SJU's two wins. Jones is the first Hawk to earn the conference's weekly award this year - by this time last season, Jameer Nelson had earned it five times and Delonte West had won it once.
ALWAYS FIRST: Prior to the loss to Dayton on Wednesday, SJU's upperclassmen had a strong claim, that they have never been out of first place in the Atlantic 10. It's basically true, as there was only one day in the past four seasons (counting this one) - January 12, 2002 - that Saint Joseph's was not in first place in the Atlantic 10 East. Since Wednesday's action, Temple has inched ahead of the Hawks. The Hawks have won four straight Atlantic 10 division crowns and are hoping to become the only team other than UMass to win five consecutive, as the Minutemen did it from 1991 to 1996.
SJU STREAK: Saint Joseph's won 21 straight Atlantic 10 games before losing to Dayton, which is the third longest winning streak in league history. The top five A-10 winning streaks follow: 27 - Temple (1982-83, 1983-84, 1984-85) 25 - Temple (1987-88, 1988-89) 21- Saint Joseph's (2002-03, 2003-04, 2004-05) 17- Massachusetts (1994-95, 1995-96) 17- Temple (1986-87)