The Red Storm were able to split both of their conference games this past week, first falling in overtime on the road against DePaul, 71-67, before righting the ship against Marquette and defeating the Golden Eagles last night at Madison Square Garden, 60-57.
After last night's win their record stands at 13-5 overall and 2-4 in the Big East as they prepare for Mike Krzyzewski and his Duke Blue Devils to enter The Garden on Sunday afternoon as Coach K gets his first shot at win number 1,000.
The top scoring performances of the week for St. John's came from Rysheed Jordan and Phil Greene IV, who each had 17 points against DePaul on Sunday. Jordan's play has certainly improved over the past few games, and in his last two outings he has put up a combined 32 points, six steals, and seven assists. His turnover numbers are still too high for a point guard (seven in the past two games), but with D`Angelo Harrison struggling, Jordan has been able to step up his scoring output.
It's also worth noting the exceptional play of Sir`Dominic Pointer last night against Marquette. Pointer rebounded nicely from a disappointing performance on Sunday to score a team-high 15 points, grab a team-high 12 rebounds, dish out a team-high six assists, and block a team-high six shots last night. He truly was Mr. Everything for the Red Storm last night, and really was the most important man on the floor for most of his 39 minutes.
But for any team, with the great performances also come the struggles, and the aforementioned D`Angelo Harrison knows all about that after his last two games. Harrison has shot just 5-28 over his last two games including an uncharacteristic 3-14 from 3-point range over that span. Usually the team's best shooter, many are wondering whether Harrison has been bothered by a calf injury over the past few weeks.
We've already seen some of the injuries that Harrison has had to fight through in Big East play alone, and while no one would dare question his toughness one has to wonder whether or not playing 35-plus minutes per game is starting to catch up with him.
The Week Ahead
As mentioned earlier, the week ahead sees the 5th-ranked Duke Blue Devils make their way into The Garden on Sunday at 2:00 P.M. With Coach K going for his 1,000th win in the world's most famous arena, there will certainly be a great atmosphere in what should be a packed MSG. After Duke, the Red Storm will travel to Omaha on Wednesday to face the Creighton Blue Jays as they get back into Big East play.
Tweet of the Week
Steve Lavin: "Come Sunday St. John's wants to win. We want to beat Duke."— Adam Zagoria (@AdamZagoria) January 22, 2015