The Saint Joseph's men's basketball team (4-4) will continue its four-game road swing when it visits Princeton (4-4) on Wednesday, December 14 for a nationally-televised game on ESPNU. Tip-off from Jadwin Gymnasium is 5 p.m.
ARENA: Jadwin Gymnasium (6,854)
TELEVISION: ESPNU - Doug Sherman, Dalen Cuff
RADIO: 610 Sports (Matt Martucci, Joe Lunardi)
AUDIO STREAMING: SJUHawks.com - LISTEN
VIDEO STREAMING: WatchESPN.com - WATCH
HAWKS’ NEXT GAME: Dec. 18 at Illinois State, 4 p.m. (EST)
• Shavar Newkirk helped SJU end a four-game losing streak, by scoring 27 points and the game-winning three-point play in the 72-71 win at Drexel. Lamarr Kimble added 16 points.
• Shavar Newkirk has been named the Big 5 Co-Player of the Week for Dec. 12 after his 27-point performance at Drexel. He ranks third in the Atlantic 10 in scoring with 21.1 ppg.
• Tonight has been designated as a Coaches vs. Cancer game since both coaches are very involved in the organization.
• Saint Joseph’s ranks eighth in the nation in fewest turnovers (89) and 18th in fewest fouls (137).
• SJU is in the midst of a four-game “road” swing, although two of the games were local (Villanova, Drexel). The Hawks close it out on Sunday at Illinois State, returning to Hagan Arena on Dec. 22 to face Lafayette.
STARRING SHAVAR: Shavar Newkirk scored the Hawks’ final 11 points to lift SJU to the win over Drexel and earn Big 5 Co-Player of the Week honors. Newkirk’s scoring streak started with 4:27 to play, as his jumper forced a 63-63 tie. The junior connected on 3-of-3 field goals and 5-of-6 from the foul line in the final four minutes. His three-point play with 10.7 seconds left proved to be the deciding points. It was the second game-winning shot of his career as in 2015-16, he hit a short jumper with one second left to give SJU a 66-64 win over Old Dominion in the Hall of Fame Tip-Off Classic.
WELL-GUARDED: Saint Joseph’s backcourt of Shavar Newkirk and Lamarr “Fresh” Kimble has combined to score 50 percent of the Hawks’ 565 points and have each exceeded their career-highs already this year. Newkirk had a career-high 28 points in the opener vs. Toledo, with Kimble bettering his career-high by scoring 16 points. Kimble then increased his personal best vs. Columbia with 19 points, and then again with 26 points vs. Loyola Chicago. Newkirk has recorded 20-plus points in six of eight games. Last season, the duo split time at point guard so this is the first time they’re seeing significant playing time together.
INJURY UPDATE: Freshman Lorenzo Edwards has been battling a shoulder injury and is out indefinitely. Junior James Demery, who has been sidelined since Nov. 14 with a stress fracture, will be re-evaluated this week to determine his progress towards returning to the court.
FINAL COUNTDOWN: The Hawks are under some extra stress as final exams started today and continue through December 20. Normally, the team has a break from games during this time, but the University made a late change to the academic calendar.
BY THE NUMBERS: The win over Drexel on Sunday ended a four-game losing skid for SJU, which was the longest since 2014-15.
TWO-BY-TWO: Phil Martelli has said that the Hawks need to make their two-point field goals for them to be successful. They are currently converting 45 percent (147-325) of their two-point field goals and 34.4 percent of their three-pointers. Saint Joseph’s is averaging 19.2 three-point field goal attempts per game.
RALLY CAPS: The win over Drexel marked the largest deficit overcome by the Hawks for a victory this season. SJU trailed by 11 points in the first half and then again with 14:51 left in the second half.
ON THE ROAD AGAIN: The Hawks are in the midst of a stretch of four straight games on the road and currently own a 1-1 road record on the year. Last season, Saint Joseph’s had the nation’s only undefeated road record until a loss at Davidson on Jan. 31, which ended a streak of nine consecutive wins.
CAN’T MISS: Shavar Newkirk is putting up career-best numbers thus far while shooting 49.6 percent from the field and 43.3 percent from three-point range. The junior has scored 20-plus points in all but two games this year.
FRESH APPROACH: Sophomore tri-captain Lamarr Kimble started the season bettering his career-high for the third time in three games with 26 points vs. Loyola Chicago. Kimble shot 10-for-17 from the field and made a personal best five three-pointers. It marked the first 20-plus point game of his career.
WORKING OVERTIME: Lamarr Kimble and Shavar Newkirk are seeing career-high numbers in minutes played, with Kimble averaging 36.2 and Newkirk at 35.5. Kimble is third in the A-10 and ranks 20th in the nation for minutes played, while Newkirk is fifth in the league and 37th in the national rankings. Kimble played a career-high 37 minutes against both Loyola Chicago and Temple, while Newkirk reached a new career-high with 38 minutes versus Temple. The duo actually played all 20 minutes together of the second half at Drexel, for the first time this season.
HANDS OFF: As they have in the past few years, the Hawks are limiting their personal fouls. They lead the A-10 in fewest fouls with 137 and rank 18th in the nation. At one point last year, SJU led the nation in fewest fouls and only had 10 disqualifications all year.
BOOST FROM BRENDAN: Senior Brendan Casper scored a career-high 10 points in the win at Drexel, including a stretch of six straight during an 8-0 run in the first half. The former walk-on is now in the rotation and saw a personal-best 23 mintues of action against both Drexel and Columbia. After the Columbia game, Phil Martelli said, “I thought the seniors really helped. Brendan’s three charges and activity, energy, and confidence. He doesn't just 'have a scholarship.' He's a scholarship player now, and he approached it like that. He has approached every day in practice like that.”
BAUMANN’S BOARDS: Graduate student Javon Baumann came up big for the Hawks in the win at Drexel. He was 3-for-3 from the field and recorded a new career-high of nine rebounds while playing a season-high 22 minutes. Baumann also had a block on one of Drexel’s final attempts with two seconds to go.
LOOKING AHEAD: Saint Joseph’s makes a first-time trip to Illinois State on Sunday to end the four-game road trip. SJU is home only twice in December - against Lafayette on the 22nd and GW on the 30th.
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