January 20, 2018
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St. Joseph’s Hawks hold off UMaine men for basketball victory

By Larry Mahoney, BDN Staff

St. Joseph’s University outscored the University of Maine 25-5 during a span that bridged the first and second halves and withstood a late Black Bear rally to record a 72-59 victory at Hagan Arena in Philadelphia on Sunday.

St. Joseph’s evened its record at 5-5 while UMaine fell to 3-9.

Sunday’s game kicked off a six-game road trip for the Black Bears.

Senior forward James Demery and senior guard Shavar Newkirk each scored 19 points for the Hawks. Demery also grabbed a team-high 10 rebounds while Newkirk handed out a team-leading four assists and came up with a pair of steals.

Taylor Funk scored 10 points and Nick Robinson chipped in with eight points, seven rebounds and a game-high three steals. Pierfrancesco Oliva contributed six points, eight rebounds and a pair of assists.

Redshirt sophomore guard Isaiah White, playing just his third game after coming off an ankle injury suffered in the season-opener, had a game-high 21 points for the Black Bears including a 5-for-7 showing from beyond the 3-point arc. He also grabbed nine rebounds.

Junior guard Aaron Calixte scored 14 points and had three assists and senior guard Ilker Er produced 13 points, nine rebounds and two assists.

Sophomore forward Andrew Fleming from South Paris pulled down a game-high 11 rebounds but was held to just two points.Dennis Ashley had four points and four rebounds.

The Hawks forced 17 turnovers that led to 18 points while turning the ball over just three times resulting in five Black Bear points.

St. Joseph’s outscored UMaine 36-22 in the paint and had an 18-6 edge in points off the bench.

UMaine had a 47-43 rebounding edge.

St. Joseph’s shot 37.1 percent from the floor and 24 percent from behind the 3-point arc while UMaine was 35.9 percent and 34.4 percent, respectively.

The Hawks outscored UMaine from the foul line 14-2.

The Black Bears were holding a 22-14 lead with 8:23 left in the half but were outscored 16-5 over the 8:23 as St. Joseph’s transformed an eight-point deficit into a three-point lead at the intermission.

Newkirk and Funk combined for nine of the 16 points.

UMaine went just 2-for-10 from the floor and turned the ball over four times during the St. Joseph’s spurt.

Er had all five UMaine points.

The Hawks scored the first nine points of the second half to build the lead to 39-27.

But the resilient Black Bears stayed within striking distance and 3-pointers by Calixte and Er pulled them within 59-52 with 6:16 remaining.

Funk then hit a 3-pointer and Robinson converted a steal into a dunk to restore the lead to 12 points and UMaine couldn’t get any closer than 10 the rest of the way.

UMaine will visit 5-6 Central Connecticut State on Wednesday at 7 p.m.

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