St. John’s Falls to Xavier, 88-60, in the BIG EAST Quarterfinals|
March 8, 2018
NEW YORK -
Trailing by four at the break to top-seeded Xavier, St. John’s saw the nation’s no. 3 team shoot a blistering 58.1 percent in the second half, falling to the Musketeers, 88-60, in the BIG EAST Tournament Quarterfinals at Madison Square Garden.
St. John’s finishes the season at 16-17.
Marvin Clark II led the way for the Johnnies, tallying 18 points and six boards. He also tied a career high with three steals.
Justin Simon scored 12 of his 14 points in the first half, while Shamorie Ponds posted 11 of his 15 in the latter stanza. The Brooklyn native finished the campaign with 647 points, the eighth-highest single-season total in program history.
After shooting just 2-of-10 from three-point range in the opening 20 minutes, Xavier made seven of its 11 tries from deep in a second half that saw the Red Storm get outscored 55-31.
Following a back-and-forth start to the contest, Xavier opened a four-point lead, 13-9, on a Trevon Bluiett layup with just over six minutes gone in the game. From there, the Johnnies scored 10 of the game’s next 12 points, opening up a four-point advantage of their own, 19-15, just over three minutes later. Simon scored eight of the Red Storm’s points on the spurt, sinking a pair of triples before capping the run with a jumper.
Ahead 22-17 following an Amar Alibegovic three with 9:32 to go in the half, the Red Storm went cold, scoring just two points over the next eight minutes and watching the Musketeers embark on a 14-2 run to move ahead by seven, 31-24, with 1:55 remaining until the intermission.
Clark snapped the St. John’s skid with a corner three 40 seconds later, pulling the Johnnies within four, the same margin with which they would enter the locker room.
Xavier came out of the break firing, using an early 9-0 run to push its lead to 13, 50-37, with six minutes gone in the half.
The Johnnies cut the deficit to 10 on their next two possessions, but Xavier continued to convert at a highly efficient rate. The Musketeers would extend their lead to 16 by the midway mark of the half before cruising to an 88-60 victory.
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