St. Joe's does this for 1st time in 39 years

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St. Joe's does this for 1st time in 39 years

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KINGSTON, R.I. -- The party was four nights ago -- when Rhode Island celebrated its first outright Atlantic 10 title in school history.

One game later, it was completely wiped away by a miserable performance.

James Demery scored 21 points, Taylor Funk had 17 and Saint Joseph's stunned No. 17 Rhode Island 78-48 on Tuesday night.

"The other night with the ceremony, I think that we maybe for a couple of days were taking victory laps," URI coach Dan Hurley said. "You can't do that. You can't do that in sports, especially when you have a ranking next to your name -- with people coming at you hard."

Shavar Newkirk added 14 points for the Hawks (14-15, 9-8 A 10), who posted their first true road victory over a ranked team since beating No. 15 Georgetown on Jan. 2, 1979.

Jared Terrell scored 19 points with seven rebounds and E.C. Matthews had 13 points for Rhode Island (23-5, 15-2). It was the Rams' second loss in four games after a school record 16-game winning streak.

"We've got to take responsibility," Matthews said. "This could be a good lesson that we've got to go about it the right way."

URI shot just 28.1 percent in the game.

Taking their home court again for the first time after they clinched their first outright A-10 title in school history and edged up a spot in this week's AP poll, the Rams came out ice cold from the field, missing 25 of their 31 shots in the opening half.

"I did not have these guys emotionally ready to play on Senior Night and that's on me," Hurley said. "It was an epically bad shooting performance."

Saint Joseph's led 35-16 at halftime.

The Hawks came into the night ranked 313th in the nation in 3-point field goal percentage at just 32 percent, but they hit their first four and opened a 13-point lead just before the second media timeout. URI went 4 for 24 from the field in the opening 14 minutes.

Saint Joseph's closed the half by scoring nine of the final 11 points.

Playing mostly zone, the Hawks seemed to keep the Rams from getting into any offensive rhythm. URI's many missed shots didn't help either.

"I'll be honest with you -- I feel for Danny and Rhode Island," Hawks coach Phil Martelli said. "We've been the top dog in this league -- twice in 2014 and 2016 and we lost on Senior Day to a team that really man-for-man couldn't measure up."

Saint Joseph's scored eight of the initial 11 points in the second half, pulling to a 43-19 lead on Chris Clover's driving basket with 16:17 to play. They pushed it to 54-21 on Demery's fastbreak jam after the Hawks outhustled URI to a loose ball at midcourt.

On Friday night, the Ryan Center was rocking and filled with blue and white - the school's colors - confetti and streamers and they were cutting down a net, but the Rams were unable to find any success offensively in the second half, too, spoiling their bid for a perfect 16-0 record at home this season.

Big picture
Saint Joseph's: For a school looking for any type of postseason tournament berth, the Hawks needed a resume-builder and a solid run at the conference tourney next week. This was the first step.

Rhode Island: The Rams were trending upward for a solid seed in their probable NCAA tourney invitation, but this loss may hurt their national recognition.

Watch and learn
Hurley said they'll watch the film of the loss.

"We'll watch this tomorrow and we're going to own it as players and coaches," he said.

Emotional night
Hurley wiped away tears during Senior Night festivities.

Three of the seniors honored -- Matthews, Terrell and Jarvis Garrett -- can set the school mark for most wins in a four-year span with three more victories.

In 2011, Marquise Jones, Will Martell, Ben Eaves and Delroy James completed their collegiate careers with 90 victories.

Two other seniors, Stanford Robinson and Andre Berry -- both transfers -- also played their final home game.

Up next
Saint Joseph's: Closes its regular season at home Saturday against La Salle.

Rhode Island: Plays its regular season finale at Davidson on Friday.

Saint Joseph's can't slow down Justin Jaworski, Lafayette

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Saint Joseph's can't slow down Justin Jaworski, Lafayette

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Justin Jaworski scored a career-high 31 points and Lafayette defeated Saint Joseph’s 94-71 Tuesday night, continuing its best start in four seasons.

Jaworski was the first 30-point scorer for the Leopards since the 2017-18 season. He was 10-for-17 from the field, making 5 of 10 3-pointers and making all six of his free throws. He also dished three assists.

The last 30-point scorer for Lafayette was Matt Klinewski, going off for 30 against Saint Peter’s Nov. 26, 2017.

Myles Cherry added 15 points on 6-for-7 shooting, and Lukas Jarrett scored 13 for Lafayette, which was coming off a nine-day holiday break.

The Leopards (5-2) have won three straight and are off to their best start since the 2014-15 season opened 7-2.

Lafayette had 20 assists on 34 baskets, shot 55% for the game (34-for-62) and made 14 of 28 3-pointers.

Ryan Daly led Saint Joseph’s (2-7) with 25 points, six rebounds and five assists. Cameron Brown added a career-high 13 points, Lorenzo Edwards 12.

The Hawks have dropped their last six.

Ryan Daly scores 30 and St. Joe's holds off UConn on the road

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Ryan Daly scores 30 and St. Joe's holds off UConn on the road

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STORRS, Conn. — Ryan Daly scored 30 points as Saint Joseph’s held off UConn 96-87 on Wednesday night.

Rahim Moore added 22 points and Myles Douglas had 18 for the Hawks (2-1), who led by as many as 27-points in the first half and never trailed.

Christian Vital had 26 points for UConn (1-1) and Alterique Gilbert added 22 for the Huskies, who cut the deficit to three points in the second half before running out of gas.

The Hawks opened the game with a 14-0 run. While UConn missed its first nine shots, St. Joe’s hit five of its first seven, including three of four from 3-point range.

Gilbert paused the bleeding for a moment with UConn’s first basket, a driving layup that came more than four minutes into the game.

But a 3-pointer by Daly pushed St. Joe’s lead over 20-points at 34-12 midway through the first half and the Hawks extended that to 46-19. Daly had 21 points by halftime, hitting five of his first seven shots from 3-point range.

It was 54-38 at the break and 69-48 with 12 ½ minutes left.

UConn went to a pressing defense and quickly cut into that deficit, outscoring the Hawks 21-4 over the next four minutes. The run was capped by a driving layup from Vital that made it 73-69.

The Huskies got as close as 79-76 after two free throws from Vital. But Daly hit a 3-pointer on the other end and St. Joe’s outscored UConn 17-11 down the stretch.

Big picture 

UConn is 6-3 all-time against St. Joe’s. This was the first meeting between the two schools since the first round of the 2014 NCAA Tournament. UConn won that game 89-81 in overtime, beginning their run to a fourth national title.

Saint Joseph’s made 13 of its 33 shots from 3-points range, but only 3 of 12 in the second half. The Hawks have put up 101 3-pointers in three games.

Up next 

St. Joseph’s continues its three-game road swing with a trip to Loyola Chicago

It doesn’t get any easier for UConn, which wraps up its opening three-game campus homestand on Sunday with a game against No. 15 Florida.