St. John's Steamrolls Sacred Heart Pioneers in Queens

(Photo taken by St. John's University Athletics)

Jamaica, NY--A team that continues to start off very slow in the early going of the previous eight games. The second half seems to be the saving grace for the St. John's Red Storm (7-1) as they go on to defeat the Sacred Heart Pioneers (3-5) by 35 points after leading only by two at the end of the first half.

At the end of the first half, words were said in the locker room, and faces were as red as the logo of the school. Because, simply going 4-for-15 from beyond the arc was not acceptable. Arizona transfer Justin Simon told the media after the game, "Coach Mullin got us really fired up at halftime. It was just a group of everyone speaking up." Then Mullin came back after and said to the New York Post, "I don't really remember what was said. I thought we were participating and simply not competing."

Sophomore Shamorie Ponds started the game shooting 30% from the field by going three of 10. But the worst part of it all, going 0-for-4 from three-point land, which only gave him six total points in the first half, along with tallying three steals on the afternoon. The second half is where Ponds felt most comfortable, as he finished the game with 22 points, and the fifth time this season where he eclipsed the 20 point mark.

Junior forward Tariq Owens led the way with 12 points of his own, and registered 11 boards to give himself his third career double-double, and tallied four blocks on top of that as well. The four blocks makes Owens the Big East blocks leader heading into Arizona. Before the first half came to a close, Sacred Heart went on an 8-0 run which tied the game at 32, but couldn't take the lead going to the room, as they were down by two 36-34.

Then in the second half, The Red Storm went on a 33-4 run during the second half which effectively put the game out of reach. Five different St. John's players netted double digit points, that included Tariq Owens, Marvin Clark II, Bashir Ahmed, Justin Simon, and Shamorie Ponds. The game became out of reach, where Justin Cole and Jay Camus, both walk-on's were inserted into the game, where the Johnnies defeated Sacred Heart 90-55.

The Red Storm had the highest lead of the day with 42, but won by 35, which isn't something to complain about, so we think. ""7-1 is good. I just see that there is a lot of improvements to be made. Defensively, we are doing much better, but we can be better."

The Red Storm next home game will occur at Madison Square Garden on December 17th, when they take on the Iona Gaels in the Advocare Auto Parts Holiday Festival. But first, they travel out to Phoenix, Arizona to take on the Grand Canyon Lopes on Tuesday at Talking Stick Resort Arena, home of the NBA's Phoenix Suns. Game can be seen on ESPNU at 11:30pm.

Joseph Jarzynka