Jan. 19, 2013
Postgame Reaction: Sampson
Postgame Reaction: Branch
ROSEMONT, Ill. - Sir'Dominic Pointer registered his first-career double-double and Jamal Branch scored a career-high 18 points as four Red Storm players reached double-figures to lead St. John's to its second BIG EAST road win of the season, and third overall, with a 71-62 decision at DePaul.
Pointer had 14 points and a career-high 11 boards to lead St. John's (11-7, 3-3), and Branch added four steals and three assists to a 9-of-14 shooting effort in his third start of the year. D'Angelo Harrison added 15 points with eight boards and three steals and JaKarr Sampson finished with 10 points and five boards. The Red Storm shot 49.2 percent (29-of-59) from the floor, totaled a 44-28 advantage in the paint and turned 18 DePaul turnovers into 24 points. Chris Obekpa totaled six points, six rebounds and three blocked shots.
"Todays victory was another step forward for our young squad. Overall we were pleased with our defensive effort today in holding DePaul under 35 percent from the field," said St. John's head coach Steve Lavin. "As expected we are still a work in progress, but our coaching staff can see the upside of this group as we begin to better learn how to win games."
Jamee Crockett scored a game-high 19 points for DePaul (10-8, 1-4) and Cleveland Melvin added 16 points and eight rebounds. Brandon Young added six points and 10 boards for the Blue Demons, which held a slight 43-41 advantage on the glass. DePaul shot 40.5 percent in the first half, but was held to just 28.6 percent in the second half as part of a 34.7 percent clip (25-of-72) for the game.
DePaul opened the second half on a 6-2 run to take a 39-37 lead at the 16:59 mark, but the Red Storm responded quickly and took the lead for good with a 10-0 run that was highlighted by five layups. St. John's led by six, 52-46, with 11:11 to play before a Sampson jumper opened up an 11-0 run that gave the Red Storm its largest lead of the game, a 63-46 advantage with just 7:36 remaining.
The Blue Demons clawed back with a late second-half run of their own. After getting fouled on a 3-point attempt, Crockett made all three free throws and then added 3s on consecutive possessions. Moses Morgan followed with a 3 of his own to cap a 16-2 stretch that pulled DePaul to within three, 65-62, with 2:24 to play. The St. John's defense clamped down, however, and did not allow another point, and the offense made 6-of-9 free throws down the stretch for the win.
St. John's grabbed a 4-0 lead within the first minute of play and led 10-4 after a Branch jumper at the 15:32 mark. A Morgan 3-pointer tied the game at 19-19 and the Blue Demons would pull even at 29-29 and 31-31 before taking their first lead of the game, a 33-31 advantage with 2:06 left before the break. The Red Storm scored the last four points of the half and took a 35-33 lead into halftime.
Next, St. John's completes its home-and-home series with Rutgers on Jan. 23, traveling to Piscataway for a 7:30 p.m. game on SNY.