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February 20, 2013

St. John's starts fast, holds off rally

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QUEENS- USF (10-16, 1-13) dropped its ninth game in a row Wednesday night, 69-54 versus the St. Johns Red Storm (16-10, 8-6).

The Bulls fell behind earlier in the first half, 16-4 and were never able to recover. They did pull within 10 in the second half, after being down 41-19, but the Red Storm was able to hold on.

St. Johns had four of its five starts score in double-figures. Jakarr Sampson led all scorers with 20 points on 8-of-15 shooting. Sampson added seven rebounds to go along with that total. D'Angelo Harrison, who came into the game third in the Big East in scoring, dropped 18 points of his own on 5-of-11 shooting. Four of his 5 field goals were from beyond the arc. Sir'Dominic Pointer and Marc-Antoine Bourgault added 12 and 10 points respectively.

Just like in the Louisville game, USF only had one player score in double figures. Against the Cardinals, it was Jawanza Poland off the bench who scored 11. Tonight it was Victor Rudd, who had another double-double with 18 points and 11 rebounds. Anthony Collins scored eight points and have five assists. Jawanza Poland turned in another solid performance coming off the bench and scoring nine points as well as bringing down six rebounds.

As a team, the Bulls shot 9-of-28 from 3-point range, and were just 3-of-12 from the charity stripe. That number is staggering considering USF is usually a solid team from the free throw line.

The Bulls once again won the rebounding battle in this game, 35-33. It's been pointed out before that this was a glaring weakness earlier in the season, but it seems that USF has been able to somewhat correct that. That was the only bright spot defensively for the Bulls, however. As for the fifth time in the past six games, the opponent has scored at least 68 points. That number is too high for a team that struggles to have success offensively.

USF has a week off before they return to the court. On February 27th, the Bulls head to Pittsburgh to take on the 20th ranked Panthers. Tipoff is set for 7:00 pm next Wednesday.

Josh Appel is the Senior Writer for RunningtheBulls.com. He is a student broadcaster at the University of South Florida. You can contact him at Josh@RunningtheBulls.com. Follow Josh on Twitter at @JoshAppel.



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