Friday, November 30, 2012

St. John's turns 'blackout' into blowout

By Jason Schott - Daly Dose of Hoops Contributor - @JESchott19

The St. John's Red Storm turned their "blackout" at Carnesecca Arena into a blowout of South Carolina, 89-65, on Thursday night. The Red Storm wore black uniforms, which they won in for just the second time ever, and all fans were given black t-shirts.

St. John's got off to a  nice lead in the first half by outrunning South Carolina. Point guard Phil Greene IV ran a crisp St. John's offense, and their defense was superb, notching six steals in the first half.
St. John's guard Felix Balamou (24, in center) celebrates with his teammates after a dunk in the first half. Photo by @JESchott19.
One of those steals was by Sir'Dominic Pointer with 7:36 left in the first, and he got it ahead to Chris Obepka, who got a layup to make it 24-15 St. John's.

Later on, Felix Balamou got a dunk to make it 30-15 Red Storm with 4:34 left in the first, and that brought the house down.

In the first half, St. John's was led by D'Angelo Harrison and Phil Greene IV with eight points each.

There was a scary moment with 13:34 left in the second half and St. John's ahead 51-41.

South Carolina guard Brenton Williams injured his neck after being fouled by Greene on a drive to the basket. St. John's forward/center Chris Obepka also fell to the court on the play and landed on Williams.
South Carolina players and medical staff gather around injured Brenton Williams. Photo by @JESchott19.
Obepka said of the play, "I didn't know what happened. Someone fouled him and I went to block the ball and he was there. When I tried to get up, I had pain in my arms, so I stayed down. When I went to get up I realized it was serious."

Williams' neck was placed in a brace and he was put on a backboard before being taken to the hospital for evaluation. He was moving all his extremities.

About an hour after the game, South Carolina announced that Williams was released from the hospital and is traveling home with the team.

St. John's dominated the second half, and opened up a 75-51 lead with 5:21 remaining. St. John's outscored South Carolina 51-39 in the second, on their way to the 89-65 victory.

D'Angelo Harrison led the way for St. John's with 26 points on 8-for-13 shooting with three 3-pointers and seven free throws.

This is Harrison's sixth game of 20 or more points this season. He has done it so often in his two seasons with St. John's that it has almost become routine.

Amir Garrett nearly had a perfect shooting night, as he made seven of eight baskets on his way to scoring 15 points. He had 11 rebounds, six on the offensive end, to give him a double-double.

Phil Greene IV had 13 points (5-for-8) with four assists. JaKarr Sampson chipped in 11 points on 4-for-6 shooting.

WATCH St. John's Head Coach Steve Lavin discusses the progress D'Angelo Harrison has made this season and thoughts on the game:

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