Freshman Taylor Funk scored a game-high 23 points, with 15 in the second half, to pace Saint Joseph's to a 71-58 win over Princeton in the Hawks' home opener at Hagan Arena.

James Demery added 13 points, Shavar Newkirk scored 11 and freshman Anthony Longpré notched the first double-figure game of his career with 10 points. Pierfrancesco Oliva grabbed a team-high eight rebounds for SJU (2-1).

Funk notched his second consecutive 20-plus point game by hitting 5-of-6 three-pointers. He now has 61 points in his first three games, which is the second highest total in school history, behind Bernard Blunt's 67 points in 1990-91.

The teams were nip and tuck in the first half, with Saint Joseph's holding a 32-31 lead at the break. After two more ties early in the second half, Princeton took its last lead of the contest 48-45, on a layup by Myles Stephens at 11:17. Then Funk took over, hitting back-to-back threes, followed by a pair of free throws from Demery to put the Hawks on top for good, 53-48.

Leading 53-50, SJU went on a 9-0 run, with four free throws from Funk to open up a 62-52 lead with 4:52 remaining.  

The Hawks made 13-of-24 field goals in the second half, led by a 4-for-4 effort from Funk.

"We got a little bit from everybody that played, but obviously the two freshmen . . . they have high IQs. They have confidence to shoot the ball, not only my confidence, but their teammates' confidence. They weren't in awe or enamored at being at home. Sometimes, you can get really mental," said head coach Phil Martelli. "We had too many jumpers. We have to be a 'downhill' team. We have guys that can and should shoot it, and then we have other guys who should play downhill. We have to get that cleaned up. And, we're still stretching Shavar to see what we can do so . . . otherwise, it was a nice way to spend a Saturday night."

Devin Cannady led Princeton (0-3) with 22 points on 6-for-10 shooting from behind the three-point line.

Saint Joseph's got off to a slow start in front of the home fans, going scoreless for five and a half minutes, allowing Princeton to hold a 5-0 lead. A three-point by Amir Bell at 10:40 gave the Tigers their biggest lead of the half, 13-7.  

The Hawks head to California for the holiday, participating in the Wooden Legacy in Fullerton, Calif. SJU will take on Washington State on Thanksgiving, in a 3:30 p.m. (Pacific) start.

RELATED