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Red Storm surge in second half to improve to 10-0

St. John’s came to life in the second half Sunday afternoon

NCAA Basketball: Legends Classic Nicole Sweet-USA TODAY Sports

St. John’s got back to action this weekend with a Sunday evening affair against the Seahawks of Wagner. Along with the hopes of improving to a mark of 10-0 on the season, something that St. John’s has not done since Chris Mullin was playing for St. John’s in the 1980’s, Sunday was also for the Red Storm the hopes of winning in a convincing fashion to avoid the woe of winning and yet playing down.

In the end, St. John’s were able to achieve both, improving to a mark of 10-0 on the season and also winning in a convincing fashion over Wagner by a score of 73-58 thanks in large part to a surging second half by the Red Storm.

Coming out of the half, the Red Storm were up by one, and seemingly playing down to Wagner. Wagner’s 2-3 zone was tough to crack for much of the game but once St. John’s found the spacing and movement it became easy to move around. The way that St. John’s were able to do this with some excellent ball movement to find the open man and get the necessary space as well. This is where Shamorie Ponds came into his own this game with a game-leading 14 assists and dishing the ball with ease.

Along with the 14 assists, Ponds had a double-double night with 16 points and came close to a triple-double but could not get that rebound to bring that mark up to 10. Still though he led the team in rebounds with nine and at times was dropping back to the rim to help out. In short, Ponds was all over the place and it was weird because at the start of the game there was a feeling that he would have a off night, but once he got going he was on.

Ponds was not the only one who had a solid night for St. John’s. The leading scorer for the Johnnies was LJ Figueroa who posted a 19 point game for the Red Storm. Rounding out the scoring was Marvin Clark II with a 14 point game and Mustapha Heron with a 10 point effort, though his night was a little on and off. He seemed to click later on in the second half but for much of the game had trouble finding his shot.

As a team, St. John’s shot the ball at a rate of 45% from the floor, 48% from beyond the arc, and 61% from the foul line. They were out rebounded 39-35 by Wagner, and were seriously turnover prone from much of the game with St. John’s committing 15 turnovers over the forty minutes of play.

On the Wagner side of things, Romone Saunders was by far and away the best scoring option for the Seahawks with 17 point tonight and the only Wagner player to reach double digit points tonight.

As a team, the Seahawks tonight shot the ball at a rate of 33% from the field, 31% from beyond the arc, and 57% from the floor. They also had their turnover troubles with 16 turnovers committed. In all, it was kind of a sloppy game.

Hopefully St. John’s will tighten things up in their next game midweek against St. Francis Brooklyn, Other than that the march is on for St. John’s as they start to close out their non-conference schedule.