The first game of NBC Sports Network’s Atlantic 10 triple-header matched two teams with aspirations of contending for the conference title in Rhode Island and Saint Joseph’s. At Hagan Arena it was the host Hawks who moved to 2-1 in conference play, with DeAndre Bembry and Aaron Brown leading the way offensively in the 72-67 victory.
Bembry played all 40 minutes for Phil Martelli’s team, finishing with a game-high 22 points along with seven rebounds, five assists and three steals. Senior Aaron Brown added 19 points, shooting 4-for-4 from beyond the arc, and classmate Isaiah Miles scored ten points for the 12-3 Hawks.
Hassan Martin led three Rams in double figures with 20 points to go along with eight rebounds, but URI’s 16 turnovers were converted into 21 points by Saint Joseph’s.
Last March young Phillip Martelli, the grandson of Saint Joseph’s head coach Phil Martelli, became one of the young stars of college basketball thanks to his mimicking his grandfather’s every move on the sidelines from his seat in the stands. Phillip also joins his grandfather at postgame press conferences on occasion, as was the case Monday night following the Hawks’ 52-49 win over Drexel.
Above is video of Phil and Phillip Martelli at the press conference, which was shot by James Hill of Philahoops.com.
St. Joseph’s lost another piece in their front court on Monday as head coach Phil Martelli annoucned that freshman Markell Lodge will sit out the 2014-2015 season to focus on his academics.
“Markell, his family and I made the decision, while receiving input from our academic advising staff. We feel that he would benefit from placing all of his emphasis on academics this year,” said Martelli. “This decision is absolutely the right step for Markell, who has a bright future at Saint Joseph’s.”
Lodge was a three-star recruit, according to Rivals. He’s an athletic, 6-foot-6 forward Christian Faith Center in Virginia. He played his AAU ball for Team Loaded VA.
Losing Lodge is a major blow considering the number of pieces the Hawks front court will be missing this year. Halil Kanicevic and Ronald Roberts Jr. both graduated, and Papa Ndao will miss the season with an unspecified medical issue.