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St. John's Weekly Rumble, 11-19

What you may have missed in a very busy week of St. John's sports.

Joshua S. Kelly-US PRESSWIRE

St. John's men's basketball

You probably know this, you've probably heard if you follow us at all, but college basketball season started. St. John's played four games in the space of a week, against the University of Detroit, the College of Charleston, Murray State, and Baylor, going 2-2.

You may not have heard of most of those schools, but rest assured, the Johnnies won and lost against good competition.

Versus the three-point-happy wings and guards of Detroit, St. John's played a fast-paced game (77 possessions) and used a D`Angelo Harrison scoring burst to come from behind on the experienced Titan squad, winning 77-74.

St. John's traveled to the Charleston Classic in South Carolina, winning 64-53 over the host Charleston Cougars, bothering them with defensive length. Murray State's late defensive intensity and hot shooting beyond the arc carried them to victory, despite being down at halftime. The Racers talented shooters pulled it out, and St. John's lost 72-67.

The consolation game against the #16 ranked Baylor Bears was an offensively flashy affair. But St. John's defense faltered down the stretch, Baylor was too long and dominated the boards, and the Red Storm couldn't locate the talented Brady Heslip (career-high 29 points). St. John's lost 97-78 after a late 15-1 run.


D`Angelo Harrison was benched for the opener against Detroit and again for missing a team bus before the Baylor game. He's still the team's leading scorer at 22.5 points per game, scoring 20 or more points each outing to pace the Johnnies. And still is being taught lessons in leadership by Coach Steve Lavin.

Phil Greene has scored 14.5 points per game on 45% shooting from the field. He's also averaging 5 points and 5 rebounds per game. Which is to say, he's having a breakout season so far; except for a blip against Murray State, his scoring bursts have been sustained since the Detroit game.

Felix Balamou - who was going to redshirt this season - has been available to play, eliminating the redshirt plan. Balamou is 3 of 3 from the field for 8 points in 14 minutes of game time.

Marc-Antoine Bourgault was reinstated by the NCAA, and played in the last two games (no points yet, two three-pointers taken).

Chris Obekpa's shot blocking made a splash in the Detroit opener - he blocked a school-record 8 shots. The New York post claims to have invented the nickname "Oblockpa", but this site is far less sure about that fact - but Oblockpa is still a good nickname.

More takeaways from the Charleston Classic later/ tomorrow. The men face Holy Cross on Wednesday at 7:30 PM, and Florida Gulf Coast on Saturday. Florida Gulf Coast has defeated Miami from the ACC already this season.

St. John's women's basketball

The St. John's women throttled Hofstra. St. John's 73, Hofstra 47: Quotes, takeaways + nuggets; Joe Tartamella's team takes on Iona next on Wednesday at 2:00 PM.

St. John's men's soccer

St. John's men's soccer comes to a disappointing end, after a 1-0 loss at Belson Stadium in Queens to Fairleigh Dickinson in the NCAA Tournament. St. John's finishes the season 10-5-4.

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