BRONX, N.Y. – Sophomore DeAndre’ Bembry reached double figures for the 21st consecutive game, but the Saint Joseph’s men’s basketball team ultimately fell short on Sunday afternoon, falling to Fordham by a 69-55 score at Rose Hill Gym.
Bembry led SJU with 18 points, while junior Isaiah Miles added 12. The loss snaps the Hawks’ 10-game winning streak against the Rams.
Saint Joseph’s (11-13 overall, 5-7 Atlantic 10) was hot from long range early in the contest, hitting on five of its first seven three-point attempts to take a 15-9 lead just over six minutes in on a three by Miles. Bembry tallied the next four for SJU, and his jumper at 9:55 gave the Hawks a 19-13 advantage.
Fordham (7-16 overall, 2-10 Atlantic 10) used a 7-0 run to take its first lead of the game, going ahead 20-19 on a three by Mandell Thomas with 8:29 to go in the half. Freshman Shavar Newkirk ended the run and put the Hawks up by point with a jumper of his own before a Bembry layup gave SJU a 23-20 lead at the 7:22 mark.
The Rams then put together a 9-0 run, taking a 29-23 lead with 3:16 to play on a layup by Jon Severe. A three-point play by Aaron Brown ended a nearly six-minute scoring drought for SJU, but a bucket by Thomas with 63 seconds on the clock set the halftime score at 31-26 in favor of Fordham.
The Hawks scored eight of the first nine points in the second half, taking a 34-33 lead on a layup by senior Chris Wilson with 17:35 to play after a steal by freshman James Demery. The Rams answered with another 9-0 spurt, taking a 42-34 lead on a layup by Chris Sengfelder with 15:08 to play.
Bembry broke the run with a layup at 14:46, but a 9-2 stretch for the home team pushed Fordham’s lead to 51-38 at the 11:55 mark. Bembry and Miles then combined for nine of the game’s next 11 points, getting the Hawks back to within six at 53-47 with 7:24 to go in the game.
After a jumper by Bryan Smith pushed the Ram lead back to eight, a basket from Javon Baumann cut the deficit back to six at 55-49 with under seven minutes on the clock. Smith answered with a three before Thomas added another one at the 4:11 mark to restore the 12-point advantage.
The margin would remain in double digits for the rest of the game, swelling as high as 16, while the Hawks got within 11 on two occasions, but Fordham ultimately came away with a 69-55 victory.
Thomas scored a game-high 20 points, one of four Rams in double figures. Ryan Rhoomes pulled in a game-high 12 rebounds, while Miles had seven to pace the Hawks. Fordham shot 48.1% from the field for the game, including an 8-of-16 performance from three-point range, while the Hawks endured a rough shooting day, going 2-of-21 from outside after their hot start.
Saint Joseph’s returns to action on Thursday night with a nationally televised game at Dayton. Tip-off is set for 6:00 p.m. on ESPNU and WNTP 990 AM.