The Friars got behind early, made a run in the second half but then ran out of gas around the 5 minute mark and St. John’s held on to win 86-76.
Cotton had 32 points and 6 assists despite getting off to a cold shooting start and Batts played really well (15 and 10) all night despite having his shot rejected emphatically a few times early. Josh Fortune chipped in 12 points, 5 rebounds and 4 assists. Tyler Harris didn’t play much and wasn’t really a factor when he did as he was getting beat on defense early and the St. John’s bigs were much more effective tonight than in Queens so Carson Desrosiers played heavier minutes than usual. CD played well down low and answered with a few blocks of his own.
St. John’s shot lights out in the first half and PC allowed a season high 53 points in the first half. Jakarr Sampson played a great floor game and couldn’t miss. He led the Red Storm with 21 points until D’Angelo Harrison (22 points) went on a personal parade to the free throw line as Ed Cooley opted to extend the game by fouling with about 1:30 remaining.
The 16 point halftime deficit which grew to over 20 at times in the 2nd half proved too much to overcome. As a Xavier fan said last night on Twitter after they fell at Villanova:
“Saturday just became huge.”
Ps: Students-proud of you tonight. You came out, stood up and were loud. Wasn’t that fun? Keep it up.