Jan. 5, 2013
BALTIMORE - Senior guard Carl Jones led all scorers with 17 points and junior forward Halil Kanacevic pulled down 12 rebounds as the Saint Joseph's men's basketball team opened 2013 with a 70-60 victory over Morgan State at Hill Field House on Saturday. Juniors Langston Galloway and Ronald Roberts, Jr. had 16 and 12 points, respectively, while Roberts also raked in 11 boards.
Saint Joseph's (8-4) conceded the first basket of the game, but then scored the next 10 points to take a 10-2 lead with 17:53 to play in the half. C.J. Aiken scored four points during the run, but after five straight from DeWayne Jackson brought Morgan State back within three, Aiken was whistled for his second personal foul and went to the bench until the half's final possession.
After a three-point play by Kanacevic, Morgan State (3-8) scored six straight over four minutes to take a 14-13 lead on a Blake Bozeman three with 11:07 to go in the half. The teams traded buckets until Jones hit a three with 5:53 to go to give the Hawks a lead they would not relinquish.
That basket keyed a 14-6 stretch that gave SJU a 32-25 lead at halftime. Jones and Galloway each hit a three-pointer and a pair of free throws to extend the Hawk lead.
Morgan State scored the first four points of the second half on a pair of baskets by Ian Chiles to cut the margin to three at 32-29 with 18:37 to go. That's as close as the Bears would get, however, as Saint Joseph's went on an 8-0 run to stretch the lead to double digits for the first time. Roberts threw down a pair of dunks during the three-minute stretch, while Chris Wilson tallied a pair of assists as the Hawks went up 40-29 with 15:37 to play.
The advantage hovered between seven and nine until a layup by Kanacevic with 12:53 to go pushed the lead back to 10 at 46-36. After the Bears cut it to 48-40, the Hawks used a brief 6-1 spurt culminating in a Galloway layup that gave SJU its largest lead of the day, 54-41, with 8:44 to play.
Morgan State got as close as eight points on a pair of free throws by Bozeman at the 6:28 mark, but a dunk by Roberts and back-to-back threes by Jones pushed the lead back to 13 at 62-49 with 4:37 left to essentially seal the win.
Saint Joseph's shot just 44.4% from the field in the game, but held Morgan State to 30.4% shooting, including 26.8% in the first half and 1-of-13 for the game from three-point range. The Hawks also pulled in 50 rebounds en route to their third straight win.
"We have some answers, and we have some balance...we have to keep playing better," said head coach Phil Martelli.
The Hawks open conference play on Wednesday night as 17th-ranked Butler makes its Atlantic 10 debut at Hagan Arena. Game time is set for 7:00 p.m.; the contest will be aired on The Comcast Network and on 610 WIP AM.