Familiar story for Explorers

In what has become par for the course for a young Explorers team, La Salle committed 22 turnovers that led to 27 Villanova points in a 71-58 Wildcat Big 5 victory at the Pavilion. Darnell Harris led three Explorers in double figures with 16 points but once again was not a factor late in the game as La Salle suffered their 5th defeat in their last 6 games.

La Salle played their second Top 25 basketball team in the past week and for the first 10 minutes of the first half proved they belonged with the Wildcats. Helped by the torrid shooting of senior Darnell Harris the Explorers and Wildcats battled back and forth as both teams would change leads before the Wildcats would go on a 13-0 run and open up 43-30 halftime lead. Harris started the game 3 for 3 from long distance but poor shooting from the rest of the team would force the Explorers into their usual dry spell on offense which allowed the Wildcats to open up the lead at halftime.

In the second half Villanova's dynamic duo of sophomore Scottie Reynolds and fab freshman Corey Fisher would keep La Salle from cutting into a double digit lead. The two combined for 37 points and as La Salle finally closed the deficit to under double digits at 60-51 Reynolds would drain a back-breaking three pointer to close the game out as Villanova improved their record to 10-1 on the season while La Salle fell to 4-7. Dante Cunningham finished with a double-double grabbing 12 boards to go along with 12 points.

La Salle will travel to Florida State next Saturday before returning home to Tom Gola arena to open A-10 play against Richmond. The Seminoles will be another big test for the Explorers as they desperately try to stop the continuous frustrating losses that continue to mount. The loss to Villanova was La Salle 5th straight in Big 5 city series action.

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