Wednesday, February 29, 2012

La Salle Hangs On For Crucial 60-56 Win Over GW

La Salle led from start to finish but had to withstand a late GW rally to hold on for a critical 60-56 road win for the Explorers.  The win clinched a first round A10 playoff game that will be held at Tom Gola Arena next Tuesday.  La Salle took a five point lead into the half and increased the lead to 57-47 with just over three minutes to go when the Colonials made their last run.  A basket by GW's Tony Taylor with twenty-one seconds to go cut the Explorer's lead to one, but Tyreek Duren and Devon White combined to go three for six from the foul line in the last sixteen seconds which was enough to hold off GW.

The star of the game for La Salle was freshman power forward Jerrell Wright who scored 15 points and grabbed 6 rebounds, and more importantly, was able to stay on the floor for 30 minutes.  Also in double figures for the Explorers were Earl Pettis (14) and Duren (12) while Sam Mills and Ramon Galloway chipped in 9 points each.

GW was led by David Pellom's 16 points and 11 rebounds.

With the win, La Salle improves to 19-11 overall and 8-7 in the A10, while GW falls to 10-19 overall and 5-10 in A10 play.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Explorers Don't Show Up In 67-62 Loss To Fordham

In their worst effort of the season, La Salle coughed away an eleven point halftime lead and fell to last place Fordham by a 67-62 score.  Poor defense, shooting, rebounding, and coaching all contributed to the embarrassing loss.  The Explorers had no answer for the Rams' Chris Gaston who scored 35 points and grabbed 16 rebounds, with 15 of them coming off the offensive glass.

Ramon Galloway's 14 points led five La Salle players in double figures.  Branden Frazier (11) was the only other Fordham player in double figures besides Gaston.

With the loss, La Salle falls to 18-11 overall and 7-7 in A10 play.  Fordham improved to 10-17 overall and 3-11 in the A10.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Owls Escape With 80-79 OT Win Over La Salle

Earl Pettis and Sam Mills missed open three point attempts in the last five seconds, allowing Temple to escape Tom Gola Arena with a hard fought 80-79 overtime win over La Salle.  The Explorers played from behind for most of the game and went into halftime trailing 32-29.  The Owls led for most of the second half and held a ten point lead with just over four minutes to go but the Explorers chipped away at the lead.  With help from a technical foul on Temple's Ramone Moore, they cut the Owl's lead to two points after Pettis made both technical foul shots.  La Salle maintained possession and eight seconds into the possession, Tyreek Duren found Pettis open on the perimeter and he drained a three to tie the game with 1:25 to go in regulation.  Khalif Wyatt missed a jumper with just over a minute to go and La Salle had a chance to take the lead, but Duren missed a runner with thirty-three seconds to go.  Temple worked the ball until there were six seconds left and called a timeout to set up a play, but were unable to get a shot off as Wyatt lost track of time and dribbled out the clock.
The Explorers struck first in OT on a Pettis three, but Temple scored nine straight points to take an 80-74 lead with just over two minutes to go and they would not score again.  Duren hit a three and Pettis made a two to cut the Owls lead to one with fifty-five seconds left.  La Salle held Temple again and gained possession with thirty-seven seconds left.  With five seconds left, Pettis got an open look from three that rimmed out, but DJ Peterson grabbed the offensive rebound and found an open Mills in the corner.  His three point attempt with two seconds left bounced off the rim as the final buzzer sounded giving the Owls their eleventh straight win.
Pettis scored a career high 33 points for La Salle and was joined in double figures by Mills (12), Ramon Galloway (12), and Duren (10).  Jerrell Wright added 9 points for the Explorers and Galloway handed out 6 assists.  For Temple, Wyatt's 25 points led four players in double figures.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Explorers Stop The Pain With A 72-71 Win At UMass

Tyreek Duren's short jumper with fifty seconds to go broke a 66-66 tie and the La Salle Explorers held on for a 72-71 win at UMass.  The Minutemen's Terrell Vinson hit a shot at the buzzer that looked like it might tie the game, but his foot was over the three point line and the Explorers escaped with the win.  The loss by UMass was their first at the Mullins Center in the 2011-12 season.

Duren scored all 15 of his points in the second half and knocked down three of four free throws in the final minute to secure the win for La Salle.  Also in double figures for the Explorers were Earl Pettis with 18 and Ramon Galloway and Sam Mills scoring 15 each.  UMass had three players in double figures, led by Maxie Esho's 18 points and 6 rebounds. 

The win by La Salle broke a three game losing streak as they improved to 18-9 overall and 7-5 in the A10 while UMass fell to 18-8 over and 7-5 in A10 play.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

La Salle Falls To Saint Louis 59-51 For Third Straight Loss

Saint Louis' stifling defense was too much as the Billikens shut down the slumping La Salle Explorers by a 59-51 score.  The loss was the third straight for the Explorers whose 14 game home winning streak came to an end.  Saint Louis dictated the pace as the teams went back and forth in a low scoring first half, ending with the Billikens holding a 26-23 lead.

The second half was more of the same with the teams exchanging leads until Saint Louis broke a 47-47 tie on a Mike McCall three with just under five minutes to play.  The closest La Salle would get after that was 52-49 on a three by Tyreek Duren with 1:16 left in the game.  The Explorers got a crucial stop with forty-two seconds left but Dwayne Evans was able to grab the offensive rebound and get the putback to give the Billikens a five point lead with thirty-eight seconds to go.  La Salle turned it over on their next possession and Saint Louis went 5-6 from the free throw line in the final twenty seconds to close out the win.

Evans was one of four Billiken players in double figures, leading the way with 16 points and 13 rebounds.  Jerrell Wright was the lone Explorer in double figures, scoring 18 points and grabbing 9 rebounds.

With the loss, La Salle fell to 17-9 overall and 6-5 in the A10 and Saint Louis improved to 20-5 overall and 8-3 in A10 play.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

La Salle Loses 78-76 Heartbreaker At Richmond

Richmond's Derrick Williams scored on a putback of a Cedric Lindsay miss with just under six seconds to go to give the Spiders a 78-76 win over La Salle.  Williams was unstoppable on the low block in the second half and finished with 21 points and 11 rebounds for Richmond.   La Salle jumped out to an eleven point lead late in the first half but Richmond went on a run of their own to narrow the deficit to two by halftime.  Neither team led by more than six points during a closely contested second half.

With just under a minute to go and  the score tied at 76, the Explorers had the ball but turned it over on a shot clock violation with twenty-one seconds to go.  The Spiders' worked the clock until just under ten seconds to go when Cedric Lindsay penetrated and lofted a floater that bounced off the rim.  Williams collared the rebound and scored what turned out to be the winning basket with just under six seconds left.  After a La Salle timeout, the Explorers ran the ball up the floor but Ramon Galloway was unable to get off a contested three point shot before the buzzer sounded.

In addition to Williams, Darien Brothers (13) and Wayne Sparrow (10) scored in double figures for the Spiders.  Darrius Garrett also chipped in with 11 rebounds and 6 blocked shots.  Tyreek Duren (17), Sam Mills (16), Ramon Galloway (15)  and Jerrell Wright (11) scored in double figures for the Explorers.  Galloway also contributed 9 assists and 7 rebounds.

La Salle lost their second straight game, falling to 17-8 overall and 6-4 in the A10 while Richmond improved to 13-12 overall and 4-6 in A10 play.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Explorers In Foul Mood After 70-66 Loss To St. Joe's

Cold shooting, foul trouble, and a fifteen free throw discrepancy were too much to overcome as La Salle fell to St. Joe's 70-66 at a sold-out Palestra.  Explorers' big men Jerrell Wright and Devon White were whistled for nine fouls while only playing a combined 23 minutes compared to Hawks frontcourt players Halil Kanecevic and CJ Aiken only being whistled for three fouls in 59 minutes.  La Salle was forced to play four guards and inexperienced freshman center Steve Zack for extended minutes which changed the whole complexion of the game.

Despite all this, the gritty Explorers hung tough and actually had a chance to win the game.  After a DJ Peterson steal and dunk by Earl Pettis trimmed the deficit to one point with eleven seconds left, the Hawks were given a disputed timeout in spite of what appeared to be a five second violation on the inbounds attempt.  St. Joe's then got a second break as they appeared to commit a second five second violation only to be awarded another timeout.  The third time was the charm as they inbounded the ball to CJ Aiken who was fouled with nine seconds left.  Aiken drained both free throws giving the Hawks a three point lead.  La Salle had a chance to tie the game but a rushed three pointer by Earl Pettis bounced off the rim into the hands of Langston Galloway who was fouled with two seconds left.  He made one of two to put the game out of reach. 

Earl Pettis led the Explorers with 17 points while Ramon Galloway (14) and Sam Mills (11) also scored in double figures.  For St. Joe's, Kanecevic bulled his way to 18 points and 17 rebounds and Carl Jones was the only other double figure scorer with 13.

With the loss, La Salle falls to 17-7 overall and 6-3 in A10 play while St. Joe's improved to 15-9 overall and 5-4 in the A10.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

La Salle Cruises Past Charlotte 85-72

La Salle took sole possession of first place in the A10 after an 85-72 win over the Charlotte 49ers.  The Explorers took a 39-36 lead into the break and held onto that lead for the remainder of the game.  Charlotte was able to the deficit to 57-55 with nine minutes to go but La Salle was able to increase the lead back to eleven with five minutes left and coasted to the comfortable thirteen point win.

Tyreek Duren led four Explorers in double figures with 22 points, 4 rebounds, 6 assists, and 2 steals.  Also in double-digits for La Salle were Jerrell Wright (18), Earl Pettis (13) and Sam Mills (13).  Ramon Galloway chipped in with 6 assists and 5 rebounds.  Chris Braswell (19 points, 6 rebounds, and 4 assists) was one of four 49ers scoring in double figures.

With the win, La Salle stands at 17-6 overall and 6-2 in the A10 while Charlotte falls to 10-11 overall and 2-6 in A10 play.