With five games gone in the 2014-15 BIG EAST season, a rematch of last year’s conference final will help break the logjam at the top of the league, as St. John’s and DePaul will square off on Friday morning at 11:30 a.m. The game, which will serve as the Red Storm’s annual Field Trip Day at Carnesecca Arena, will also be broadcast on the BIG EAST Digital Network with Jonathan Yardley and Julianne Viani on the call.
RED STORM QUICK HITS
- On Sunday afternoon against Creighton, the Red Storm was engaged in a back-and-forth battle with the Bluejays for the first 20 minutes of the contest. After the intermission, the game turned into a one-sided affair rather quickly. In the latter stanza, the Red Storm converted on 17 of its 23 attempts from the floor, good enough for a shooting percentage of 73.9. On the defensive end, St. John’s limited Creighton to just 19 points in each half, putting together its best defensive effort of the season with just 38 points allowed. Nationally, the Red Storm ranks ninth in scoring defense through games played on Jan. 13.
- In the Red Storm’s games last week against Butler and Creighton, Aliyyah Handford strung together two of her best performances of the season en route to finding a spot on the BIG EAST Weekly Honor Roll. In a losing effort against the Bulldogs, the Newark, N.J., native tied a season-high with 27 points on 10-of-17 shooting, grabbing five boards, dishing out four assists and swiping four steals in the process. Against Creighton on Sunday, Handford scored 18 of her game-high 22 points in the second half, going eight-for-11 from the floor in the latter stanza. The junior guard narrowly missed her first double-double of the season, finishing the contest with nine boards and three assists.
- After averaging more than 10 rebounds per game in each of her last two outings, Amber Thompson maintained her spot at the top of the BIG EAST rebounding standings. The St. John’s career leader in that category, Thompson currently ranks sixth in the nation with 11.9 boards per contest this season. Thompson broke the career record earlier this month against Seton Hall, pulling down 20 rebounds in the Red Storm’s win over the 23rd-ranked Pirates. Her 20 boards were the third-highest single-game total in school history and the program’s first 20-plus rebound game since Shenneika Smith pulled down 21 on Nov. 25, 2011 against Iowa.
- Averaging 90 points per game this season heading into Friday, DePaul currently sports the top-ranked scoring offense in the nation.
- DePaul’s offense comes primarily from two sources, three-pointers and points off turnovers. The Blue Demons rank third nationally in three-pointers per game at 9.8 and second nationally in steals per game at 14.1. DePaul is also the top team in the NCAA in terms of turnover margin (+12.82).
- Brittany Hrynko sports the second-highest scoring average in the BIG EAST, pouring in 19.6 points per contest. The senior guard from Philadelphia trails Aliyyah Handford by 0.2 points for the conference lead.
ST JOHN’S VS. DePAUL – THE SERIES
- Conference foes since the 2005-06 season, DePaul and St. John’s have played one another on 12 occasions over the history of the two programs, with the Blue Demons holding an 8-4 advantage.
- Last season, the Red Storm and the Blue Demons split during the regular season, as each team picked up a road win. DePaul took the rubber match in the BIG EAST Championship Game, the Red Storm’s first appearance in the conference final since 1988.
For more information on the St. John’s University Women’s Basketball team fans are encouraged to click on the link seen here: