Game #24: St. John's 61, Cincinnati 71

Box score

St. John's Red Storm are 12-12 on the season, 3-9 in conference. Next game: @ Marquette, 9 pm Eastern, Saturday, February 14th.

I read a writer who mentioned that he was losing interest in the college basketball season; his team is becoming a longshot to reach the NCAA Tourney, and it's hard to maintain attention.

I know the feeling acutely.

For the past few years, I've watched St. John's with an eye towards analysis of improvements, waiting for the day when I can say these guys are coming up.

They still might be. But they find new ways of losing games. I didn't even post about the Cincinnati game - I couldn't see it since it was on ESPN360, the Worldwide Leader's way of making a game "available" without wasting a televised feed that all possible customers actually get. Unless your internet provider has caved to ESPN's demands.

No New York City media covered the game in Cincy.

None.

And the game wasn't close. St. John's was in the hole 17 points at the end of the first half.

Cincinnati shot nearly 63% (an effective field goal percentage of 69.8%) and as a capper, the postgame press conference featured this quote by mediocre Cincy forward Yancy Gates:

"It was really just the plays coach [Mick Cronin] was calling. He got me open on a lot of cross screens from the guards. I don’t think St. John’s knew we ran those plays."

That's some good scouting there by Mick Cornin. Or some easy playcalling to figure out from the Red Storm.

Postgame Links:

Official Post-Game Quotes
Boxscore from Statsheet
Play by Play from ESPN

University of Cincinnati News-Record: Gates lifts UC past Storm

Gates dominated the paint for the 23 minutes he was on the court, and the Red Storm had no answer for the 6-foot-9-inch 260-pound freshman. Gates finished the game shooting 8-for-11 from the field and 5-for-5 from the line while pulling down six rebounds...

The Bearcats started the game shooting 73 percent (11-of-15) from the field and after an 8-2 run to close out the first half, UC held a commanding 39-22
halftime lead.

Cincinnati Enquirer/ Cincinnati.com: Hot-shooting UC topples St. John's

UC, which entered the game shooting 42.2 percent as a team, shot a season-high 62.8 percent, but still had to withstand a late comeback by the Red Storm to put away the victory....

The Bearcats roared out of the gate with three quick baskets in the first two minutes to take a 6-0 lead while their defense smothered the Red Storm in the early going.

St. John’s was trailing, 8-1, by the time D.J. Kennedy made a 3-pointer with 15:15 left in the first half for his team’s first field goal.

The UC defense did not let up, limiting the Red Storm to 28.1 percent shooting in the first half.

The Bearcats did an excellent job sharing the ball in the first half. At one point, Alvin Mitchell appeared to have an open look from 3-point range, but instead dumped the ball off to Gates inside for a layup.

AP/ Sporting News: Cincinnati defeats St. John's 71-61 in Big East

"We dug ourselves too deep of a hole," St. John's coach Norm Roberts said. "They shot well, and we didn't defend. They made too many easy shots. They made some tough shots, but they had too many easy shots."

Cincinnati City Beat: Bearcats continue midseason run

St. John’s needs to get some new uniforms. Nobody’s trying to act like UC’s tri-colored Adidas triangle theme is super cool, but the Red Storm dudes look like they’re wearing the high school JV jerseys handed down by the 1988 state championship team.

The Johnnies got handled like a JV team for most of Wednesday night’s game, a 71-61 UC win that wasn’t as close as a 10-point difference would suggest.

UC scored the game's first six points, forcing St. John’s coach Norm Roberts to call a timeout less than two minutes in.

The uniforms are just fine, dammit.

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