Jan. 19, 2011
PHILADELPHIA - Delroy James had 19 points and 11 rebounds as Rhode Island (12-6; 3-1) held off Saint Joseph's, 64-59, in Atlantic 10 action at Hagan Arena. It was the Hawks' return home after a two-game Midwestern road swing last week.
Carl Jones had 25 points for the Hawks, with 17 in the first half, while senior Idris Hilliard had his first double-double of the season with 13 points and 10 rebounds. Freshman C.J. Aiken had 12 points and seven blocked shots for the Hawks, who dropped to 5-13 and 0-5 in the league.
The Hawks trailed for most of the second half, but appeared to make a game-changing spurt with over six minutes remaining. Aikens' block triggered a fast break ending in a three-pointer from Jones. Then Jones stole the ball on URI's next possession and laid it in as SJU closed within 54-50. The Rams called timeout but came back with four straight points to take a 58-50 lead.
A jumper by Hilliard at 2:08 pulled SJU within 61-57, but on the Hawks' possession with under a minute to play, Jones' long three-pointer was off the mark. Orion Outerbridge converted a layup with 26 seconds to play to preserve the win for the Rams.
In the first half, Rhode Island used an 11-3 run to take a 13-10 early edge. The Rams would build it up to 20-12 but every time they seemed poised to take a double-digit lead, Aiken or Jones would hit a shot to keep the Hawks close.
A dunk by Aiken, who shot 5-for-6 in the first half, and free throws from Galloway, pulled the Hawks within 32-30. Jones then scored the Hawks' final seven points as they took a 37-33 lead in the final seconds. Marquis Jones converted a layup for Rhode Island right before time expired to cut SJU's halftime lead to 37-35.
Rhode Island shot 36 percent in the game, but had 16 offensive rebounds to just seven for the Hawks. Saint Joseph's made 11-of-13 free throws in the game, but did not go to the foul line in the second half.
"We had too many defensive breakdowns, isolations, one on one plays. Delroy James and Marquis Jones played like seniors when they had to and we didn't react and that's on all of us - that's not just one guy getting taken. We just didn't do a good enough job on the isolation plays that they wanted to run," said Hawk coach Phil Martelli. "This game got away in the middle of the second half where they got a working margin, It's all kinds of things - you can't hold four going into halftime and let a guy go the length of the floor and shoot a layup on you. It negates all the positives."
Saint Joseph's takes a break from conference play on Saturday evening when it faces Penn in a Big 5 matchup at The Palestra.