February 5, 2021 –
The Dayton Flyers remained undefeated in the Atlantic 10 holding the Saint Joseph’s Hawks offense in check to earn a 55 – 43 win at the Hagan Arena. On offense Saint Joseph’s converted 18 of 61 shots and sank 3 of 19 from beyond the arc. More offense was needed to pull off an upset bid and the Hawks had too many missed chances and scoreless streaks.
“We missed a lot of layups, we were 3 of 10 from that standpoint,” said Saint Joseph’s Coach Cindy Griffin. “It was tough to score. Dayton did a good job defensively taking away our primary options. We got some secondary looks and weren’t able to convert. Those are things we need to fine tune.”
The 43 points is the lowest number scored this season for the Hawks.
Dayton was able to create separation over the third and fourth quarter behind a 12 – 2 run. Saint Joseph’s had a spell of over four minutes without a point, and lost the third quarter by a 16 – 7 margin. The Flyers got their offense going behind the shooting of Jenna Giacone who made 3 of 4 from distance. She posted a game-high 15 points getting 12 after halftime. Three-pointers by Giancone and Araion Bradshaw were back breakers in decisive turning point.
“We thought we contained them for the most part,” Griffin said. “They made timely threes.”
The game was knotted at 24 at intermission. The Hawks stayed in contention by their defense being disruptive, and not allowing Dayton to go on a run. The Flyers were shooting 9 of 25 at halftime (36%) and connected on less than 40% for the game.
The visitors kept SJU in check and got to the free throw line 15 times making 10. The Hawks made 4 of 6 from the charity stripe.
“We also need to get to the free throw line a little bit more, and we haven’t been doing that, and need to get better at,” Griffin said.
Bradshaw scored in double-figures getting 13 and pulled down 7 rebounds for the Flyers (9-1, 8-0).
Gabby Smalls led Saint Joe’s with 10 points and a game-high 8 rebounds, 4 off the offensive boards. Lula Roig handed out a game-high 4 assists.
Saint Joseph’s (5-3, 3-3) will be playing a back-to-back next as the Saint Louis Billikens are in for games on Sunday and Monday, a quasi-doubleheader. For this team getting more games to play and chances to be on the court is of the utmost importance and can lead to improvement.
“If you’re a player, you love this, you love to play games,” said Griffin. “I think it’s great. Play as many games as you can and see where we fall. We obviously got to bounce back from this and quickly. We want to fix what we need to fix. As long as keep defending, you look at our kids diving on the floor for the loose balls, we were really gritty and scrappy. That’s great and I know it’s going to payoff for us in the long run.”
Written By: Glenn Papazian