The St. John's Red Storm concluded their west coast tour in L.A. against the undefeated Arizona State Sun Devils, where they fell 82-70 at STAPLES Center to the Sun Devils, who move to 8-0 on the year.
ASU came out hot with Vitaliy Shibel draining two 3-pointers. At about the 11:47, St. John’s took their only lead of the game, 19-18, and the Sun Devils never let go of the lead after that.
The Johnnies struggled to score in the final minutes of the first half. At that point, ASU led by 12 going into halftime. The Red Storm again came out swinging in the second half offensively, with a Marvin Clark II 3-pointer and a Tariq Owens layup. However, their poor shooting from the behind the arc (7-24 3PT FG) eventually did them in.
On defense, early foul trouble hurt the Red Storm in the first half. Tariq Owens picked up two early fouls, and the size of Romello White and De'Quon Lake caused some issues. On the ball however, St. John's forced five steals and 14 turnovers overall. They also had six blocks. They did hold ASU to 39.1 percent (9-23 3PT FG) from behind the arc, which is actually really good for the Johnnies playing one of the nation's top offenses.
Shamorie Ponds finished the game with 19 points, seven assists and seven rebounds with Clark adding in 18 points of his own. Owens finished with 17 points on 8-10 shooting from the field. Marcus LoVett was held out due to injury on the road trip. Hopefully he returns soon to provide St. John’s with his natural offense.
Ultimately, the poor shooting combined with an early lead caused the loss for St. John's. Ponds, despite his great stat line, shot 6-23 from the field. The bench contribution this game was also not helpful with the absence of LoVett. Arizona State could not be stopped that game.