• After no double-double performances in the first five games of this year’s Wooden Legacy event, this game featured two double-doubles.
• Saint Joseph’s James Demery recorded his fifth career double-double… the senior forward scored 18 points to go with 10 rebounds, the fifth time in his career with 10+ rebounds.
• Harvard’s Robert Baker notched his first career double-double, with 14 points and 11 rebounds.
• Playing in its second ESPN event (2-3 record in those).
• Harvard had two players score more than 20 points for the first time since 1/9/16 vs. Dartmouth.
• Chris Lewis scored 21 points, just one off his career best, while grabbing nine rebounds, which is also one shy of his career best.
• Bryce Aiken dished out a career high eight assists… with his 21 points, he has now scored in double digits in 24 of his 32 games at Harvard… his 21 points was the 11th time he has scored at least 20 points in a game.
• Robert Baker got his first start of his career, and responded with a career best 14 points and a career high 11 boards.
Saint Joseph’s (2-3)
• Playing in its third ESPN event (4-4 record in those).
• Saint Joseph’s shot just 22-61 (.361), marking a season low for Saint Joseph’s offensively and a season best defensively for Harvard.
• One day after setting a career high in rebounds, Pierfrancesco Oliva set a career high in points with 16… hat was his fourth career game in double digit scoring… he also added eight rebounds.
• Taylor Funk, the team’s leading scorer entering the game at 20.3 ppg, scored 11 points to go with nine rebounds… his 3-10 (.300) shooting on 3pt-FGs marked the first time he had made less than 50% in his collegiate career (five games).
• Pierfrancesco Oliva and James Demery combined to shoot 13-27 (.481) FG and 34 points, while the rest of the Saint Joseph’s team combined to shoot 9-34 (.257) FG and 37 points.
• Lorenzo Edwards scored a career high seven points while grabbing a career best seven rebounds.
• Shavar Newkirk scored nine points today, ending his streak of 17 consecutive games scoring in double digits… his last time with fewer than 10 points came on March 18, 2016, in the NCAA First Round win over Cincinnati.
Harvard Head Coach Tommy Amaker
(Opening statement) – “We’re really excited and proud, it’s easy in a tournament to get up and be excited and enthusiastic to play in a game in the semifinals when you advance in a tournament. It’s very difficult when you have a tough loss, with both of us, Saint Joseph’s and our team. I thought both teams played with a lot of heart today, it showed how much we both wanted to win and how hard we competed. I was very pleased with the effort that our kids brought and I thought the opening few minutes of the game set the tone for us and we really tried to prepare for that…”
(On getting the team to focus after Thursday’s tough loss) – “It wasn’t hard to get their attention, we have tremendous kids, I’m blown away by their character and so it wasn’t difficult at all. There was some things that needed to be said and how we need to play better and compete harder for 40 minutes and I thought they embraced that. I thought they did it themselves in terms of talking amongst themselves and wanting to do better. They know we are better than the team that we displayed in our first game and I thought they were determined to make that a reality this afternoon.”
Harvard sophomore point guard Bryce Aike
(On getting to the free-throw line for 12 attempts) – “Honestly, I just took what the defense gave me today. The coaches and the rest of my teammates do a terrific job of putting me in a position to be successful and I think I capitalized on the opportunities that were there today.
(On scoring 20 plus points in back-to-back games) – “Just staying confident even though I shot horribly from the three in this tournament so far but it’s alright, you just stick with it and like coach always preaches, short memory, you have to move on to the next play. But offensively, like I said, coach and my teammates they trust me a lot and it’s up to me to produce for our team.”
Harvard sophomore forward Robert Baker
(On the team bouncing back after Thursday’s loss) – Everybody just had to step up. With Seth (Towns) being out I didn’t want to do too much because nobody can replace what Seth does on this team, nobody in the country I don’t think. I just wanted to step in and do my job, play my role and everything will take care of itself. I just had to do a better job of sticking to what I do best.”
Saint Joseph’s Head Coach Phil Martelli
(Opening Statement) – “We had way too many empty possessions. We showed a lack of energy on defense that hurt us. They had a couple unanticipated additions to lineup that made it hard on us down underneath the basket. Our team gave up too many points to their big men (Henry Welsh and Robert Baker) and we can’t be successful in the Atlantic (conference) if we continue to play with these continuous mistakes.”
(On their preparation for next game)- “We will start to prepare for our next opponent on Sunday, as if we were home, and as of right now we can’t really do much to change this. We have a tough week coming up with Bucknell University on Wednesday and Villanova on Saturday, so in regards to our players we are telling them that it starts with the man in the mirror, we need our players to self-evaluate themselves and start to learn their role on this team and utilize that.”