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MENS BASKETBALL


Marquette 86, Saint John's 75

Marquette 86, Saint John's 75

STEVE MEGARGEE
ASSOCIATED PRESS

MILWAUKEE - Tyler Kolek scored 22 of his 27 points in the second half and also had 13 assists as No. 7 Marquette rallied to beat St. John’s 86-75 for its seventh consecutive victory.

Stevie Mitchell added 14 points, David Joplin had 12 and Kam Jones 10 to help Marquette (18-5, 9-3 Big East) erase a 15-point deficit and beat St. John’s for a sixth straight time.

Daniss Jenkins had 22 points, six rebounds and six assists for St. John’s (14-10, 6-7). Joel Soriano, who entered averaging a team-high 15.9 points per game, scored just two and played only 17 minutes while struggling with foul trouble.

Marquette took the lead for good when Kolek, the reigning Big East player of the year, drove into the lane and hit a short jumper that broke a 69-all tie with 5:58 remaining. St. John’s trailed 75-73 when Nahiem Alleyne missed a layup that would have tied it with 3:25 left.

The Golden Eagles outscored St. John’s 11-2 the rest of the way as Kolek scored or assisted on Marquette’s last five baskets.

After the first eight minutes featured eight lead changes, St. John’s capitalized on rebounding and 3-point shooting to go up 45-30 with 2:30 left in the first half before taking a 47-38 edge into the break.

St. John’s shot 8 of 18 from 3-point range and owned a 17-0 advantage in second-chance points over the first 20 minutes. St. John’s was coming off an 85-57 blowout of DePaul in which the Red Storm went 15 of 40 from beyond the arc to set a program record for 3-pointers in a Big East game.

The Red Storm built their lead against Marquette even though Soriano didn’t score at all and attempted only one shot in the first half. St. John’s opened the second half with Zuby Ejiofor on the floor at center instead of Soriano.

Marquette quickly got back in the game as Kolek hit a pair of 3s to cap a 9-0 run that trimmed it to 51-50 with 16:17 left. St. John’s called a timeout and brought back Soriano, who finally scored his first points with 13:25 remaining.

The Golden Eagles pulled ahead 55-54 on Joplin’s 3-pointer with 15:16 to go, but Alleyne put St. John’s back in front 21 seconds later with his own 3-pointer.

St. John’s extended the lead to four before Marquette tied it at 62 with 13:04 left as Mitchell made a driving layup.

The game went back and forth from there until Kolek took over down the stretch.

BIG PICTURE

St. John’s: The Red Storm desperately need a signature win to boost their postseason profile as they seek their first NCAA Tournament berth since 2019. This is a game they might look back on with regret next month.

Marquette: The Golden Eagles won in part because they were much more competitive on the glass in the second half. They allowed only three second-chance points after halftime. After getting outrebounded 23-12 in the first half, they had a 21-12 edge over the final 20 minutes.

Maequette athletics press release

February 10, 2024





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