GW Men's Hoops Surrenders Late Run to Fall to #18/19 Saint Louis, 66-58
Larsen Leads Way with 14 Points, Garino Sets Rookie Steals Mark
March 2, 2013
WASHINGTON - George Washington men's basketball took a 48-45 lead into the final seven minutes, but #18/19 Saint Louis closed on a 21-10 run to edge the Colonials, 66-58, at the Charles E. Smith Center on Saturday.
GW (12-15, 6-8 A-10) falls into a three-way tie for 11th place in the A-10 standings with Dayton (15-13, 6-8) and Charlotte (18-10, 6-8), one game behind an eighth-place tie between Richmond, St. Bonaventure and Saint Joseph's. The top 12 teams in the final 16-team league standings qualify for the 2013 A-10 Championship at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y., March 14-17.
Reigning A-10 Rookie of the Week Kevin Larsen reached double-digit scoring for the seventh time in the last 10 games with a team-high 14 points on 7-of-14 shooting. Reserve Lasan Kromah totaled 12 points on 6-of-9 shooting and four assists, and Dwayne Smith had 10 points on 4-of-8 shooting off the bench in his penultimate home game.
Freshman Patricio Garino had eight points, six rebounds and added a game-high four steals to set a new GW rookie steals record. Garino now has 62 thefts this season, eclipsing Carl Elliott's mark of 60 in 2003-04. Isaiah Armwood had 10 rebounds and chipped in a game-high five blocks to increase his total to 65, the second-most in a season at GW behind only Yinka Dare's 84 in 1992-93.
Nationally ranked Saint Louis (23-5, 12-2 A-10) maintained its one-game lead atop the A-10 and won its 11th consecutive game overall on the strength of Dwayne Evans' 22-point, 12-rebound double-double. Kwamaim Mitchell pumped in 18 points, including 11 of SLU's first 13 of the second half, and Jordair Jett added 11 off the bench.
After trailing by as much as eight in the first half and 32-26 at halftime, the Colonials used a 10-2 run to take their first lead of the game at 42-41 on junior Nemanja Mikic's transition dunk with 14:17 to play. Kromah then scored GW's next six points for the 48-45 advantage with 7:12 remaining.
The Billikens responded with 10 straight points, including eight at the foul line, to ignite a game-deciding 21-10 run during which they converted 15-of-17 free throws. Evans keyed the rally with 12 of his 22 points, as he and Mitchell combined for 29 of SLU's 34 second-half points.
It marked the first time a visiting team won a game in the 10-game series now knotted at 5-5, as well as GW's 15th game decided by single digits this season.
The Colonials held sizable margins in points in the paint (44-30) and points off turnovers (16-9), but made just 8-of-15 free throws compared to 21-of-24 by the Billikens.
GW plays its final road game of the regular season on Wednesday night at La Salle (20-7, 10-4 A-10). The Colonials fell to the Explorers, 80-71, at the Smith Center on Feb. 2. The contest will be broadcast live on FederalNewsRadio.com, RaiseHigh.tv and 1500/820 AM.