ITHACA, N.Y. - Ryan Wittman scored 17 points yesterday to lead four players in double figures as Cornell beat St. Joseph's, 78-66, at Newman Arena.

Garrett Williamson scored 14 points and Darrin Govens added 10 to lead the Hawks (3-4), who lost their fourth straight.

Cornell (7-2) led throughout the first half, but St. Joseph's (3-4) never trailed by more than seven despite shooting just 29 percent from the field. The Big Red took a 30-23 lead with 2 minutes, 13 seconds to go in the half, but the Hawks drew even at the break with a 7-0 run keyed by four points from sophomore Todd O'Brien.

The Big Red opened the second half with a 12-0 run to build a 42-30 lead.

Chris Wroblewski and Jon Jaques scored 15 points each for the Big Red, who have won five straight and are off to their best start since going 8-1 in the 1967-68 season. Geoff Reeves scored 13.

"In the first half we had a real good mental and physical effort defensively," said Hawks coach Phil Martelli. "In the second half there were breakdowns - missed assignments, slow reactions - and that's one of the things with my team that I've seen now over seven games.

"We have a tough time right now stopping the boulder coming at you. We're not able yet to do that. That's going to take every guy stepping up and giving it more of a mental approach."

The Hawks will play Villanova Wednesday night at 9 p.m. at the Palestra.