Miles' career-high night propels Hawks to win

St. Joe's got a career-high 20 points from junior forward Isaiah Miles on Wednesday night. Miles' 20-point, 9-rebound, 4-assist evening was exactly what head coach Phil Martelli needed, as the Hawks squeaked by Big 5 rival Temple 58-56. With the win, St. Joe's improves to 4-3 on the season.

On a night where he really struggled offensively, St. Joe's sophomore swingman DeAndre Bembry iced the Hawks' win Wednesday night when he elevated and blocked a game-tying Will Cummings lay-in at the buzzer. Both the Hawks and Owls squandered last-minute opportunities in Wednesday evening's Big 5 tilt, but in the end, St. Joe's did just enough to eek out a much-needed home win.

The star of the night was 6'7 junior power forward Isaiah Miles. Miles shot 7-14 from the field en route to a game-high 20 points. He also chipped in with 9 rebounds and 4 assists, both team highs. Miles canned a corner three at the end of the first half to give the Hawks a comfortable 34-22 lead over Fran Dunphy's Owls.

St. Joe's maintained a safe double-digit lead throughout the opening half of the second stanza. However, around the 13-minute mark, the Hawks went absolutely stagnant from the field. In fact, over the game's final 13 minutes, St. Joe's scored exactly one field goal, a Chris Wilson triple. All of the Hawks' other points came from the charity stripe. In the second half as a whole, St. Joe's scored just five field goals. Everything else came at the line.

Luckily for St. Joe's, Temple didn't do much better. The Owls made it a one-possession game at the 2:53 mark, when a Quenton DeCosey jumper pulled the Owls within 53-50. Then, after a careless Isaiah Miles turnover, Temple sophomore Josh Brown scored a put-back off a missed three to pull the Owls within 57-56. Following another turnover, this time by Aaron Brown, Temple had an opportunity to win a game they hadn't led since the 17:56 mark of the first half. The Owls turned it back over, then following a 1-2 trip to the line for Miles, DeAndre Bembry blocked the game-tying lay-up attempt by Temple senior Will Cummings. After the dust settled, the Hawks escaped with a narrow 58-56 Big 5 win.

Wednesday night's game was a tough one for both team's star players. Both Will Cummings and DeAndre Bembry shot 3-15 from the field. Bembry's block at the buzzer, however, gave his Hawks the win.

For the Hawks, the story remains the same. Their shooting woes continued, as they went just 2-15 from three. They also went shot just 36% from the field as a whole. The 16-21 from the free throw line, however, was a positive sign, and a major factor in the win. Miles (20) and Bembry (11) were the only double-digit scorers for SJU. Aaron Brown, Chris Wilson, and James Demery each chipped in 7 in the win.

On the Temple side of things, it was Quenton DeCosey who led the way, shooting 7-11 from the field en route to a game-high 22 points. The good news for the Owls is that transfers Devin Coleman (Clemson) and Jesse Morgan (UMass) are both eligible at the beginning of the second semester. This Temple team will be significantly different when they are able to go.

St. Joe's improved to 4-3 with the win. Things hardly get easier for them though, as they travel to the Main Line Saturday to take on a high-scoring, top-ten Villanova team. I will have a detailed preview of that up on Friday.

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