The Central Connecticut men's basketball team was held scoreless during a five-minute stretch in the second half and St. John's pulled away for an 87-57 win on Saturday at Carnesecca Arena. The Blue Devils trailed by just six points at halftime before the Red Storm used a 20-0 run to pull away after halftime. Central is back in action at Arizona State on Nov. 14 as part of the Air Force Reserve Tip-Off Tournament presented by Citi.
Central had just two players in double-figures scoring with senior Jamir Coleman and freshman Greg Outlaw scoring 11 points each. Sophomore Karrington Wallace had a career-high 10 rebounds. CCSU 34.0 percent (18-of-53) from the field and 6-of-18 (.333) from three-point range. SJU was 34-of-76 (.447) from the field and 11-of-28 (.393) from the arc.
Score: Central Connecticut 59, Hartford 74
Records: CCSU (0-1), SJU (1-0)
Location: Carnesecca Arena | Queens, NY
"The '40 minutes of hell' is trying to get you to play selfish, to play one-on-ones, to try to take bad shots so they can go out. First half, we moved the basketball, we played as a team and it was a six-point lead. Second half, we cut it to three at the end of the half and played right into their hands," said head coach Donyell Marshall on playing St. John's.
"Free throws happen in practice. We were fourth in the country last year because the team concentrated in practice. When we don't concentrate in practice this is what happens," said Marshall after the team was just 15-of-30 at the foul line.
- St. John's scored seven straight points to build a 13-4 lead at the 15:00 mark of the opening half.
- CCSU got within four points in the early going and limited the Red Storm to 1-of-8 shooting during that stretch.
- The Blue Devils used an 8-0 run to take a momentary 18-17 lead on a layup by junior Stephane Ayungma midway through the first half.
- St. John's got a pair of three-pointers from LJ Figueroa and another from Mustapha Heron during a 9-0 run to push the lead to 33-23 with 4:29 to play in the first half. CCSU would cut the deficit to 39-33 at halftime.
- St. John's held CCSU scoreless over a nearly five-minute span in the second half and used a 20-0 run to build a 59-36 lead with 15:08 to play. The Blue Devils would not get any closer.
NUMBER TO KNOW
31 - Central committed got 31 points from its bench, outscoring SJU 31-21.
- The programs were meeting for the third time. The Red Storm have won all three meetings.
- Mustapha Heron (30) points led SJU in scoring. His father, Bryan, played at Central Connecticut (1985-89) and scored 1,558 career points and averaged 14.4 ppg, 6.6 rpg before playing professionaly in Europe.
- Freshman Greg Outlaw has scored in double-digits in both games this season.
- Wallace grabbed a career-high 10 rebounds.
- SJU forced 16 turnovers in the second half and turned them into 22 points.
- SJU outscored CCSU, 38-14 in the paint.
Central is back in action at Arizona State on Nov. 14. The game will tip off at 10;00 PM Eastern on Pac-12 Networks.