Jordan Price

La Salle falls to Davidson in Round 2 of Atlantic 10 Tournament

La Salle falls to Davidson in Round 2 of Atlantic 10 Tournament

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PITTSBURGH -- Peyton Aldridge scored 33 points with 10 rebounds and ninth-seeded Davidson defeated No. 8 seed La Salle 82-73 on Thursday in the second round of the Atlantic 10 Tournament.

La Salle cut a 19-point second-half deficit to three with 4 minutes left but Aldridge scored a pair of baskets and added eight free throws, along with four free throws by Jon Axel Gudmundsson, down the stretch.

Jack Gibbs added 18 points and Gudmundsson, who made four 3-pointers, 16 with seven assists for the Wildcats (16-14), who take on top-seeded Dayton in a Friday quarterfinal.

Jordan Price had four 3-pointers and scored 20 points, BJ Johnson added 19 and Pookie Powell also made four 3s and scored 16 points with eight rebounds for the Explorers (15-15).

Davidson trailed by two before outscoring La Salle 26-9, including all four of Gudmundsson's 3-pointers, over the final eight minutes of the first half to lead 49-34.

Lamarr Kimble delivers game-winning jumper for St. Joe's over La Salle

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Lamarr Kimble delivers game-winning jumper for St. Joe's over La Salle

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It didn’t matter that it wasn’t an official Big 5 game. Two Philadelphia teams were playing on Saturday night and Philly kid Lamarr “Fresh” Kimble wanted the ball in his hands in the final seconds.

“I live for that type of moment,” Kimble said. 

The sophomore guard will remember the moment for a long time as he buried the game-winning jumper with 15 seconds left to lead Saint Joseph’s to a dramatic 73-72 win over La Salle in an Atlantic 10 matchup Saturday night at Hagan Arena (see Instant Replay).

“He’s a kid who loves Philadelphia games,” St. Joe’s coach Phil Martelli said. 

Kimble, a former star at Neumann-Goretti High, has certainly played well against Big 5 rivals, pouring in 23 points in a win over Penn last week after previously scoring 12 and 15 against Temple and Villanova, respectively. (Mark your calendar for when Kimble and the Hawks play La Salle again on Feb. 18 — the game that will count toward the Big 5 standings).

But things haven’t been all peachy this season for Kimble, who’s had to carry a big load after backcourt-mate Shavar Newkirk suffered a season-ending knee injury and the Hawks sputtered to a 2-5 mark in his absence heading into Saturday’s game. And Kimble, too, has struggled with his midrange game at times, as he tries to develop into a more complete college basketball player.

All of that made the sophomore’s game-winning shot from the elbow even more gratifying.

“I guess today I really wanted to will that shot in,” Kimble said. “That’s kind of the approach I took. We’ve been losing a lot — and games at the end too. For us to turn it around and be able to come out with a win in a tight game against a good team, that’s a great win.”

Martelli was less enthusiastic about the victory, lamenting many aspects of his team’s performance, particularly their “awful” free throw shooting; the Hawks shot 9 for 17 from the line.

But he was glad to see Kimble, only the third sophomore captain in program history, to step up when his team needed him most.

“He hasn’t made that shot,” Martelli said. “We’ve talked to him a lot about his eyes being on the rim. His eyes are always down and he’s been short-arming things. … But he’s well-received by his teammates and I’m glad he has the keys to the house, so to speak.”

After Kimble put the Hawks ahead by one, it was Jordan Price’s turn to try to hit a big shot of his own. But the La Salle star, who had scored 21 points and 16 points in the second half, missed at the buzzer after getting into the lane.

“I’m really appreciative of the crowd,” Martelli said. “We were the home team and the ball didn’t go in for them on the last play.”

It was a good look, though.

“A one foot shot?” La Salle coach John Giannini said. “I like a one-foot shot.”

Price also missed a shot on the previous possession with La Salle clinging to a one-point lead. But Giannini was mostly upset with some turnovers and “foolish fouls” down the stretch after a rough first half when Price only had five points and few other players were able to get going as the Explorers fell behind by eight en route to their third straight loss.

“I thought we were atrocious in the first half,” the La Salle coach said. “I thought in the second half we really played well. But we have to understand what goes into winning close games.”

The Hawks, who are trying to climb up from near the bottom of the Atlantic 10 standings, still need to learn more about winning close games, too. But they took a big step in that direction as sophomore Chris Clover (21 points), freshman Charlie Brown (15 points) and junior James Demery (13 points) joined Kimble (14 points) in double figures in what was one of the team’s most balanced efforts of the season.

The play of Clover was especially promising considering the former St. Joseph’s Prep star and Philadelphia Catholic League MVP only scored 10 points during his entire freshman campaign and hadn’t scored more than 11 points in any game this season.

Until Saturday when he surpassed his career high midway through the first half and set the Hawks on their way to a big city win.

“Chris’ confidence is rising every game and we’re confident in him,” said Kimble of his old Philadelphia Catholic League rival. “He could do big things as seen today. He’s capable of scoring and going on a run like that. For him to come out and produce like that in his first breakout game, I’m definitely happy for him.”

Instant Replay: St. Joe's 73, La Salle 72

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Instant Replay: St. Joe's 73, La Salle 72

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What Chris Clover started, Lamarr Kimble made sure to finish.

Kimble hit the game-winning jumper with 15 seconds left, Clover finished with a career-high 21 points and Saint Joseph’s edged city rival La Salle, 73-72, on Saturday at Hagan Arena.

Jordan Price finished with 21 but missed two shots in the final minute for La Salle (11-8, 5-3), which has now lost three straight following a five-game winning streak.

The Hawks (10-10, 3-5) picked up a much-needed win after dropping four of their previous five games.

Trailing by eight at the half, La Salle quickly staged a comeback and took a 53-49 lead with 11 minutes left on a Price three-pointer. It was a tight contest from there with the Big 5 rivals trading leads and big shots.

With the game tied at 70-70, La Salle’s Amar Stukes hit a short floater with 1:20 left — the first field goal for either team in more than four minutes — before the Hawks’ James Demery hit one of two free throws on the other end. 

After Price missed a jumper, Kimble buried the game-winner with 15.8 seconds left and Price missed another shot from close-range as time expired. Kimble’s shot was the Hawks’ first made field goal in nearly six minutes.

Saturday’s game did not count toward the Big 5 standings. The official Big 5 contest will take place when the two teams reconvene on Feb. 18.  

Big men on campus
Clover’s 21 points came on 8 for 11 shooting and 4 for 5 shooting from three-point range before fouling out with 3:06 left. He also had a career-high five assists. 

Also for St. Joe's, freshman Charlie Brown had 15 points, Kimble scored 14 and Demery had 13. 

Price scored 16 of his 21 points in the second half. Amar Stukes scored 16 points and five assists and B.J. Johnson finished with 14. 

By the numbers
• There were 44 total fouls with St. Joe’s shooting 14 for 25 from the free throw line and La Salle shooting 22 for 30.
 
• St. Joe’s shot 52.9 percent from three-point range while La Salle shot 33.3 percent. 

• St. Joe’s finished with 13 turnovers and La Salle had 10

First half
The game was back and forth for the first few minutes before a 16-6 run put St. Joe’s up 27-18 with a little under eight minutes to go. The Hawks maintained their advantage the rest of the way, taking a 37-29 lead into halftime.

Clover had 16 points in the first half, setting his career high less than nine minutes into the contest. He shot 6 for 7 from the field and 3 for 3 from three-point range before halftime.

As a team, the Hawks shot 52.2 percent from the field and 60 percent from three-point range while the Explorers shot 31 and 28.6 percent. 

Welcome back, Marvin
Before the game, former St. Joe’s star and Big 5 Hall of Famer Marvin O’Connor was honored. 

O’Connor may be best known for a game against La Salle in 2001 when he scored 18 points in less than a minute. One fan told him before the game it was “the greatest thing I’ve ever seen in basketball.”

Several other former players were also in attendance and welcomed back throughout the second half. 

Up next
St. Joe’s hosts Davidson on Tuesday.

La Salle welcomes UMass on Wednesday.