SPOKANE, Wash. – The Saint Joseph's men's basketball team opened play in the 2014 NIT Season Tip-Off with a 94-42 defeat at 13th-ranked Gonzaga at the McCarthey Athletic Center on Wednesday night. Junior Aaron Brown led the Hawks with 14 points on the night.
Gonzaga (3-0) scored the first eight points of the game and made its first eight field goal attempts and held the Hawks to 2-of-10 from the floor en route to a 16-2 advantage at the 15:02 mark. After a three-pointer by senior guard Chris Wilson made it 16-5, the Bulldogs reeled off 12 straight, keeping the Hawks off the scoreboard for a six-and-a-half-minute stretch.
Saint Joseph's (1-2) cut the deficit to 31-10 on a free throw by redshirt sophomore Javon Baumann with 6:23 to go in the half, but Gonzaga scored the final 17 points of the period to take a 48-10 margin into halftime.
The Bulldogs extended the run to 29-1 to start the second half, leading 60-11 with 17:46 to go. Freshman James Demery ended the run with a layup before sophomore DeAndre' Bembry followed with his first basket of the game with 16:23 remaining.
The Hawks would twice cut the lead to 43 – on a three by Brown with 11:00 to go and a layup by Bembry at the 10:19 mark – but Gonzaga extended the margin over the final 10 minutes, leading by as many as 53 with 3:42 to play.
Saint Joseph's shot just 3-for-28 (10.7%) from the field in the first half and 15-of-58 (25.9%) for the game. Gonzaga, meanwhile, hit 19-of-31 (61.3%) in the first half en route to a 56.9% clip on the night. Five Bulldogs scored in double figures, including Gary Bell, Jr., who scored a game-high 18 points, all in the first half.
"The window to your soul is your eyes," said head coach Phil Martelli after the game. "We had guys whose eyes were very cloudy, and we have to correct that.
"Unfortunately, scoring the ball is an issue. In this game, at the highest levels – which is what Gonzaga is – it's a game of scoring. It was eye-opening, the way they played."
The 52-point margin of defeat is the largest in school history, and the Hawks' 42 points scored is their lowest total since a 56-39 loss at Villanova on February 6, 2007.
The Hawks will look to bounce back on Saturday, November 22, when they host Vermont at Hagan Arena. Tip-off is slated for 7:00 p.m.; the game will be streamed free of charge on the Atlantic 10 Digital Network, while live audio will be available on Sports Radio 610 WIP and SJUHawks.com.