The St. John’s Red Storm struggles in Big East play continued this afternoon as they got blown out at home by DePaul, 91-74.
- DePaul 91 (8-8, 1-3 Big East)
- St. John’s 74 (10-6, 0-4)
- Final, Box Score
- Carnesecca Arena, Queens, NY
After a promising start to the season, the St. John’s Red Storm are now the only winless team in the Big East. In the battle of two teams that didn’t have a conference win, it was DePaul’s strength on the glass and their good defense that led to a 91-74 win.
Throughout conference play, St. John’s has struggled with their rebounding and that continued today. The Blue Demons outrebounded the Red Storm 46-30 and had three players with nine or more boards. It didn’t help that DePaul’s leading rebounders were also their lead scorers.
DePaul’s center, Marin Maric, had 25 points, 11 rebounds, was 7-for-8 from the floor, and 9-for-10 from the free throw line. In the backcourt, it was Max Strus who had a team-high three trifectas on six attempts to go with 22 points and ten boards.
Due to the success on the boards, DePaul was able to get 20 second-chance points off 15 offensive rebounds. That helped contribute to their good shooting percentage from the floor (49.2 percent), from three-point range (47.1 percent), and they had a strong effort from the free throw line (22-for-29).
St. John’s kept the game close in the first half thanks to the three-point shot. In total, the Red Storm were 8-for-15 from downtown in the first half. However, they hit just a single three-pointer in the second half on 12 shots.
For the second straight game, Bashir Ahmed led the way for St. John’s in scoring with 21 points (7-for-14 shooting) and had seven rebounds, which tied Justin Simon for the team lead in that category.
While Simon and Shamorie Ponds each scored in double figures (Simon – ten points, Ponds – 15), they combined to shoot 10-for-33 from the floor and Ponds was only 1-for-9 from downtown. Give credit to the DePaul zone for making St. John’s shoot from the perimeter rather than attack the basket.
Since the Red Storm don’t have much depth on the bench, they need help from every player on the roster. They got some from forward Kassoum Yakwe this afternoon as he had seven points and three blocked shots. Marvin Clark II also had 11 points and hit three trifectas in the loss.
Before Big East play began, some thought of St. John’s as a potential NCAA Tournament team. But, without Marcus LoVett, the Red Storm’s postseason hopes continue to fade by the loss and make even the NIT chances get smaller. But, at the same time, there are 14 games left in the conference and if you go off this tweet by Ponds, they aren’t done competing:
I AM LETTING MY TEAM DOWN!!! I HAVE TO STEP IT UP!!! I SUCK RIGHT NOW!!! ITS JUST HOW AM I GOING TO BOUNCE BACK!! #HEADHIGH
— Shamorie Ponds (@ShamorieP) January 6, 2018
Next Game: St. John’s will be back at Madison Square Garden Tuesday night when they will take on the Georgetown Hoyas (11-4, 1-3). It will be the first time that Patrick Ewing comes to MSG as a head coach. You can watch the game on FS1 at 6:30 p.m ET.