NEW YORK - The seventh-seeded Xavier Musketeers take on the 10th-seeded St. Joseph's Hawks in the first round of the Atlantic 10 Tournament Thursday night at 6:30 p.m. from the Barclays Center in New York.
Xavier (17-13, 9-7 A-10), which is coming into the game off a loss to the Butler Bulldogs to close out the regular-season, lost its only meeting with St. Joe's (17-12, 8-8) this season on Jan. 26, 59-49. Freshman Semaj Christon scored a game-high 16 points, but the rest of the Musketeers struggled to find their rhythm in Philadelphia as the Hawks came out on top.
Thursday night's get-together carries much more weight for both teams, as they are playing for their postseason lives after up-and-down regular seasons. The winner of the game will improve its stock for a likely berth in the NIT and continue their hopes of claiming an automatic NCAA berth by winning the conference tournament title.
Below is a collection of game notes provided by the sports information departments at Xavier and St. Joe's.
Time: Thursday, March 14, 2013 at 6:30 p.m.
Location: Barclays Center (18,000) in Brooklyn, N.Y.
Television: NBC Sports Network with play-by-play from Mike Korey and analysis from David Kaplan. Brooke Weisbrod will be the sideline reporter.
Radio: 700 WLW-AM with play-by-play from XU Hall of Famer and former Musketeer standout Joe Sunderman (‘79) and analysis from Xavier Hall of Famer and XU all-time leading scorer Byron Larkin (‘88). The XU broadcast is available via iHeart Radio.
What's up next: The winner of the game will meet second-seeded Virginia Commonwealth Friday at 6:30 p.m.
About the Hawks
F‐ #13 Ronald Roberts 11.6 points 8.5 rebounds 1.0 assists
F‐ #21 Halil Kanacevic 8.4 points 7.0 rebounds 3.3 assists
F‐ #11 Daryus Quarles 2.2 points 1.3 rebounds 0.4 assists (Has started past two games) OR F‐ #1 C.J. Aiken 10.9 points 5.6 rebounds 1.0 assists
G‐ #10 Langston Galloway 13.3 points 3.6 rebounds 2.3 assists
G‐ #35 Carl Jones 14.1 points 2.8 rebounds 2.6 assists
- Saint Joseph's finished the regular season winning two of the last three.
- The Hawks ended the regular season with a 52-40 loss at Charlotte.
- Carl Jones continues to climb the all-time scoring list at SJU and now has 1,784 points to rank fourth in school history. He is five points behind Ahmad Nivins (2005-09). He is also sixth on the all-time school made 3-pointers list (206).
- This is SJU's 31st consecutive appearance in the Atlantic 10 Tournament and the Hawks have won two straight openers in the tournament and six of their last seven.
- The Hawks went from scoring 80-plus points in two consecutive games to just 40 points in the regular-season finale at Charlotte. The Hawks shot 29.2 percent in the game and 13.6 percent from three-point range for their lowest point total since Feb. 6, 2007, a 56-39 loss at Villanova.
- St. Joe's has qualified for 31 consecutive Atlantic 10 Tournaments, and has played in every one since joining the league in 1981-82.
- SJU owns a 12-3 all-time record in Atlantic 10 First Round games, and scored an 80-64 win over Charlotte last year at Hagan Arena. The Hawks seek their third consecutive berth in the conference quarterfinals.
- Saint Joseph's has posted a 33-28 all-time record in the Atlantic 10 Tournament. The Hawks have reached the championship game five times (1986, 1997, 2005, 2006, 2008).
- The Hawks have already played here at the Barclays Center, with their appearance in the 2013 Coaches vs. Cancer Classic in November. SJU defeated No. 20 Notre Dame in overtime, 79-70, and then lost to Florida State, 73-65. Among the memorable efforts from the Notre Dame win were 21 points and 16 rebounds from Ronald Roberts; Chris Wilson scoring a career-high 19 points; and Langston Galloway scoring 13 points, but losing a tooth while going for a loose ball. Roberts would go on to earn All-Tournament honors.
- In last year's A-10 Tournament, the Hawks were the fifth seed and defeated 12th-seeded Charlotte, 80-64, in the opening round at Hagan Arena. Carl Jones had 23 points to lead four Hawks in double figures. SJU then went to Atlantic City for the quarterfinals to face fourth-seeded St. Bonaventure, and fell in a heartbreaker, 71-68, to the eventual league champion. Jones again led the Hawks' scoring with 24 points in a contest that had 24 lead changes and nine ties.
The X's And O's
- Xavier, 17-13 overall and 9-7 in the Atlantic 10 Conference, earned the no. 7 seed.
- The Musketeers are playing a first-round Atlantic 10 Championship game for only the third time in 13 years. XU had earned first-round byes 10 times in the last 12 A-10 Championships, including the last six. Xavier's last two titles out of four all-time have actually been captured the last two times it has had to play a first-round game, 2006 and 2004.
- The Musketeers are second in field goal percentage defense (.4050) in the A-10, a fraction of a percentage point behind Saint Joseph's (.4045). XU is second in scoring defense (62.6 points per game), and
- third in 3-point field goal percentage defense (.321). Xavier is second in the A-10 in rebounding margin at +5.0 per game.