"They came out ready to play and we weren't ready from the tip," said Langston Galloway.
Tyreek Duren matched Galloway's 27 points for La Salle, and Jerrell Wright recorded a double-double with 17 points and 12 rebounds, as the Explorers played spoiler to the Hawks' regular season finale.
The Explorers closed the half on a dominant 21-5 run, holding the Hawks without a field goal for close to eight minutes, as they went to the locker room up 33-23.
Galloway scored 12 points in the half to lead the Hawks, but they all came in the first 7:52 of play, as Saint Joseph's struggled to the tune of 30.8 percent shooting in the half, while also coughing the ball up 10 times.
Tyreek Duren led the charge in the half for the Explorers, scoring 11 points, while La Salle racked up eight first half steals.
Saint Joseph's emerged from the locker room looking ready to mount a comeback, utilizing a 7-0 run to start the half and pull within three points. The Hawks would revert back to their sloppy play after that however, as La Salle went on a 9-0 run to take a 42-30 lead.
With Halil Kanacevic in foul trouble and unable to do virtually anything on defense as a result, the Hawks struggled to come up with stops against the Explorers. Poor free throw shooting didn't help the Hawks cause, making it difficult to close the gap, as they fell by a score of 71-63.
"We're disappointed. We're down on the mat. We'll take tomorrow off and pick ourselves up on Tuesday and get back at it," said Saint Joseph's coach Phil Martelli.
Tyreek Duren led the Explorers' efforts, scoring 27 points, including going 16-of-17 from the free throw line. Jerrell Wright added a double-double for La Salle, as the Explorers got back to the .500 mark with the win.
Langston Galloway led three Saint Joseph's scorers in double figures, as he scored 27 points on 7-of-14 shooting. DeAndre' Bembry and Ronald Roberts Jr. added 15 and 13 points, respectively, while both grabbing 8 rebounds, but struggled mightily from the charity stripe.
"We had a long stretch where we were one of the better teams in the Atlantic 10 and we haven't been this week," said Martelli.
Next up for both teams is the Atlantic 10 Tournament in Brooklyn. La Salle will play Thursday, while Saint Joseph's will have a bye until Friday.
"We just have to pick up the pieces and get ready for Friday," said Galloway.
By: Kyle Babcock
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