St. Bonaventure Men's Basketball Game Preview: Saint Joseph's Hawks
TV: CBS Sports Network with Darren Goldwater and Marc Jackson
Radio: WPIG 95.7 FM with Gary Nease and Don Scholla
Game Promotions: $7 kids tickets (ages 12 & under); free Adidas t-shirts to first 500 SBU students
Complete Game Notes (PDF)
Wednesday night, St. Bonaventure returns home for just its second game in the Reilly Center in the month of January. The Bonnies hope some home cooking is what's needed to help them overcome a Saint Joseph's team they lost to 18 days ago in Philadelphia.
• The Davidson trip was the final contest of a very challenging stretch that had St. Bonaventure on the road for four out of five A-10 games. The Bonnies were sent to Dayton, Saint Joseph's, Rhode Island and Davidson in a 16-day span.
• St. Bonaventure hopes to return to the kind of defense that was a strength in non-conference games. The Bonnies still rank near the top of the A-10 in field goal percentage defense (.421) and three-point defense (.309).
• Senior point guard Jaylen Adams has earned A-10 Player of the Week honors three times already this year. He leads St. Bonaventure in scoring (18.5 points per game), assists (5.1) and three-point shooting (.529). Already one of the most accomplished players in the program's history, Adams was on the preseason watch list for three national player of the year awards.
• Adams' backcourt partner Matt Mobley is averaging 17.6 points per game; combined, the duo average 36.1 points per game and are shooting .393 from three-point range.
• Junior forward LaDarien Griffin averaged 2.7 points and 2.2 rebounds last season. This year, he is at 9.6 points and 6.8 rebounds. In the win over Fordham, the 6-6 Griffin posted career highs of 21 points and 14 rebounds for his third double-double of the season.
• Courtney Stockard missed the last two seasons due to foot injuries, leaving his career in doubt. He persevered, though, and the 22-year old redshirt junior is averaging 11 points per game off the bench. He made his first career start at Davidson.
• Since the start of the 2015-16 season St. Bonaventure is 15-3 against A-10 teams at home.
• Coach Mark Schmidt and his staff will participate in Suits and Sneakers Week this week as part of the 25th anniversary of Coaches Vs. Cancer.
Saint Joseph's Notes:
• Saint Joseph's won its last two games, defeating Dayton and Fordham at home. The Hawks are 7-1 at home and 1-5 in true road games.
• Senior swingman James Demery (18 points per game) and senior point guard Shavar Newkirk (17 ppg) lead Saint Joseph's. They combine to average nearly as many points per game as Jaylen Adams and Matt Mobley. In the first meeting of these teams Jan. 6, Newkirk exploded for 23 points with 10 rebounds with five assists and five steals.
• The Hawks also feature freshman sharpshooter Taylor Funk, a 6-9 forward who has made 54 three-pointers.
St. Bonaventure vs. Saint Joseph's: The Last Meeting
Jan. 6, 2018 at Hagan Arena: Hawks 85, Bonnies 78
The Bonnies fell behind by 17 points early in the second half but rallied to within three late in the game. The Hawks held off the visitors, however, with timely free throws. In the second half, Saint Joseph's scored 11 of the first 13 points to open a 53-37 edge by the 17:51 mark. St. Bonaventure trailed by as many as 17 points before rallying. Adams made a three-pointer, and later Brockington drilled consecutive three-pointers of his own to cut the deficit down to 64-53 at the 12:48 mark. The Bonnies continued to chip away at the Hawks' lead, eventually pulling within four at 79-75 on Courtney Stockard's layup with 1:09 left. More chances came the Bonnies' way down the stretch, but missed shots and a final turnover cost them a chance to pull even. The Hawks converted four free throws in the final :08.
This will be the 74th meeting between these long time Atlantic 10 rivals. The Hawks hold a 48-25 lead in the series, but the Bonnies have won the last seven of the last eight meetings. The first-ever meeting between the schools was in 1958.
Backcourt One Of Nation's Best
All-America candidate Jaylen Adams missed the first six games of the season due to a sprained left ankle which he suffered in the exhibition game against Alfred (N.Y.) on Nov. 4. That meant the Bonnies' dynamic backcourt duo had to wait until Dec. 2 to be reunited. Now with 12 games back together, the Adams-Matt Mobley pairing is performing like they did last season. Dec. 30, they combined for 60 points -- the most they have scored in one game together -- in a home win over UMass. They combined for 38 points Jan. 13 at Rhode Island and 43 points at Davidson Jan. 19.
Adams & Mobley Statistics:
PPG Assists Steals 3-PT% FT%
36.1 7.6 2.6 .393 .855
A-10 High In Three-Point Efficiency
As expected, Jaylen Adams' return to the lineup has helped the Bonnies' three-point shooting. The past 10 games, St. Bonaventure made 69 of 170 attempts (40 percent) from behind the arc. The Bonnies' three-point percentage for the season is .380, which is the best in the Atlantic 10 Conference. Adams is at .492, which is second-best in the A-10.
Experience certainly can help a team win in college basketball and the Bonnies have plenty of it. Combined, seniors Idris Taqqee (108), Matt Mobley (111) and Jaylen Adams (93) have played in 312 career games. As a trio, they have played in 50 games together.
Mobley's Scoring Prowess
Slowing down senior shooting guard Matt Mobley is a high priority for opposing defenders. Even with the added defensive attention, Mobley has continued to perform at a high level. He ranks ninth in the Atlantic 10 in scoring at 17.7 points per game, with eight 20-point games. He now has 23 games of 20 points or more in 50 career games at St. Bonaventure. Mobley also leads the Bonnies in three-pointers (47) and steals (25).
One Of A-10's Best Off Bench, Stockard Makes First Career Start
Entering the season, no player on the roster would have been more accurately described as the "X Factor" than Courtney Stockard. That is because the 6-6 wing missed all of the past two seasons due to a broken bone in his foot. He first broke it in the fall of 2015, then re-injured the same bone in the same foot in the first official practice of 2016. During his two years on the sidelines, the St. Louis native became well-versed in the Bonnies' playbook and what the coaches expect. That knowledge is showing up on the court. Now a 22-year-old redshirt junior, Stockard is third on the team in scoring, averaging 11 points per game, and also is second in rebounding at 5.5 per game. He has scored in double figures nine times in his 16 games. While he has established himself as one of the Atlantic 10's best sixth men, Jan. 19 at Davidson Stockard made his first career start. Stockard has been consistent all year. He scored 14 points against Maryland and 16 against TCU, topped by a highlight-reel moment, the game-winning bucket against Maryland with 3.2 seconds left. Stockard's top moment, however, was the charge he drew in the waning seconds of overtime at Syracuse. With the Bonnies clinging to a 58-57 lead, Stockard stepped in front of a driving Oshae Brissett and got the call with 12 seconds left. In A-10 play, Stockard has scored in double figures four times including a career high 17 points at Saint Joseph's.
St. Bonaventure basketball tickets are available via GoBonnies.com/tickets; by calling (716) 375-2500 or in person at the St. Bonaventure ticket office in the Reilly Center between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. For the latest news on St. Bonaventure athletics, stay connected on social media. Follow the Bonnies on Twitter @Go_Bonnies and get men's basketball updates @BonniesMBB. Keep up with the Bonnies on Facebook /GoBonnies and on Instagram @GoBonnies.