FACTS & STATS: Site: Hagan Arena (4,200) -- Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Television: None. Home Record: URI 5-9, SJU 10-3. Away Record: URI 3-8, SJU 5-7. Neutral Record: URI 0-2, SJU 1-1. Conference Record: URI 3-11, SJU 7-7. Series Record: Saint Joseph's leads, 53-40.
GAME NOTES: The Saint Joseph's Hawks are set for their final home game of the regular season, as they welcome the Rhode Island Rams to Hagan Arena for an Atlantic 10 Conference matchup on Wednesday night.
This will also be the final road game of the season for the Rams, who are just 3-10 outside of their own building. URI has lost three in a row overall, including Saturday's 76-70 setback at Temple. The Rams will wrap up their schedule this Saturday against Massachusetts.
Saint Joseph's has split its last eight contests and is coming off an 82-56 rout over Fordham this past weekend. The Hawks are in the middle of the pack in the A-10 standings with a 7-7 league mark. They'll conclude the regular season at Charlotte on Saturday.
Saint Joe's leads the all-time series, 53-40, although URI has won three of the last four meetings.
The Rams were eliminated from the A-10 tourney field as a result of Saturday's loss to Temple. They started out hot and led by as many as eight in the first half, but Temple used an 8-1 spurt late in the frame and another 10-0 run in the second half to take control. With Temple leading, 71-70, with 2:10 to play, URI was unable to get a bucked the rest of the way. Xavier Munford, the conference's second-leading scorer (17.8 ppg), had a game-high 30 points for the Rams as he shot 12-of-23 from the floor and 5-of-8 from beyond the arc. Fellow guard Andre Malone joined Munford in double figures with 18 points behind a 4-of-5 effort from the perimeter. Malone is third on the team in scoring (10.0 ppg) behind Munford and forward Nikola Malesevic (10.3 ppg), who leads the team with 5.3 rebounds per tilt.
The Hawks certainly did not look like a team that missed starting forward C.J. Aiken (10.9 ppg, 5.6 rpg) against Fordham as they cruised to a 26-point victory. Aiken, who had never missed a game previously in his collegiate career, is dealing with a bruised back and sprained wrist, and he is considered questionable for today's game. Still, as they proved in Saturday's win, there are still plenty of weapons in the lineup. Carl Jones paces the squad with 14.5 ppg, followed by Langston Galloway with 13.5 ppg. That duo has combined to knock down 120 3-pointers this season at 38-percent accuracy. Ronald Roberts, a 54-percent shooter from the floor, leads the team in rebounding (8.4 rpg) and is third in scoring (11.7 ppg). In the win over Fordham, Jones knocked down 5-of-8 threes en route to a game-high 24 points. SJU committed only eight turnovers while holding the Rams to 33.3-percent shooting from the floor.
The Hawks can still improve their seeding for the upcoming conference tourney with a strong finish to the regular season. Even if Aiken is unable to play, the Hawks should have enough firepower to win this one on their home floor.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Saint Joseph's 72, Rhode Island 61
03/06 10:36:30 ET
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