St. Joseph’s freshman Jordan Hall had a chance to end the game with 20 seconds remaining, up by two. But Hall turned the ball over and gave Albany a chance to tie or take the lead.
Fortunately for Hall, he made up for it on defense when he forced an Albany (1-5) turnover. The Hawks followed with a free throw and a missed three-pointer by the Great Danes missed, giving the Hawks (1-8) their first win of the season, 67-64 at Hagan Arena in a nonconference game.
“[Winning] does a lot for our confidence,” said St. Joe’s forward Myles Douglas. “Win or lose, we’re just trying to get better each day with what we do.”
The Hawks trailed, 59-52, with less than seven minutes remaining. They closed the game on a 15-5 run. Five different players scored during that stretch.
Taylor Funk led St. Joe’s with 14 points. Jack Forrest and Douglas scored 12 and 10, respectively.
Hall’s growth will play large role in the Hawks’ results. He finished with 13 points, nine assists and four rebounds.
“We feel like he’s one of the most diverse players that we have, and maybe in our conference as a young basketball player,” St. Joe’s head coach Billy Lange said.
Anthony Longpre did not play due to an unknown injury. Lange said he is day to day. Ryan Daly and Greg Foster are still out with no update on their returns.
St. Joe’s travels to Davidson on Tuesday for the first of three consecutive road games.
Late foul ends Drexel
Drexel led by four points with under a minute to play in its Colonial Athletic Association opener against the College of Charleston. It looked like the Dragons would escape with a road win in a game their best player, Camren Wynter, struggled.
But Charleston’s Zep Jasper sank three free throws with less than a second remaining, and the Dragons (5-3, 0-1 CAA) fell, 61-60, at TD Arena.
With Drexel up, 60-56, the Cougars (4-6, 2-1 CAA) made a quick two-point basket, then made a stop and called a timeout with two seconds remaining. Drexel’s Matey Juric was guarding Jasper and fouled him on a three-point attempt with less than a second left.
“It’s a tough call,” Drexel head coach Zach Spiker said. “Matey did everything he could.”
Wynter had a season-low four points on 2-for-11 shooting. James Butler picked up the slack with 20 points and 14 rebounds. Starters Zach Walton and T.J. Bickerstaff finished with 13 and 12 points, respectively.
The Cougars and Dragons will play again at TD Arena on Sunday at noon.
“I just want to see our guys respond,” Spiker said.
Drexel women take care of business
Drexel’s women didn’t have as much trouble. In fact, the Dragons didn’t have any.
The No. 2-ranked scoring defense in the country lived up to its billing as Drexel (5-1) held Delaware State to 14 first-half points en route to a 70-47 win at the Daskalakis Athletic Center in a nonconference game.
The Dragons led by 19 at the half.
“[Getting down the floor fast] was a big part for us,” Drexel head coach Amy Mallon said. “Doing so, we will get some easier looks. That takes some pressure off for us.”
Mariah Leonard, who missed two games earlier this season, led the Dragons with 15 points. Her paint presence will be important through conference play.
“She’s been here, she’s a senior and she understands what we try to do offensively,” Mallon said. “Today, I think that showed with the points she scored.”
Maura Hendrixson finished with 11 points and made three of Drexel’s five three-pointers. The Dragons shot 45% and held Delaware State to 31% shooting. Mallon said having 20 assists on 28 made field goals was her favorite stat.
Temple remains unbeaten
Temple or Central Florida was going to suffer its first conference loss on Saturday afternoon. They were two of the three remaining unbeaten teams in the American Athletic Conference.
It was Temple who kept its streak alive as the Owls defeated the Knights, 61-58, at The Liacouras Center.
Mia Davis led the way with 19 points and freshman Jasha Clinton added 17 points, including five three-pointers. She did have seven turnovers, but that’s part of the freshman learning curve.
The Owls (4-3, 4-0 AAC) won by three and the difference was at the free throw line. UCF (5-2, 3-1 AAC) finished 14-for-26, but Temple sank 17-of-23 from the charity stripe.