Saturday, September 26

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Tigers fall to St. Joseph's, start season 0–3

Eight months after winning the inaugural Ivy League Championship in Philadelphia, Princeton Men’s Basketball returned to the City of Brotherly Love to face St. Joseph’s in its 3rd non-conference game of the season. This time, however, the Tigers failed to come away with a win, falling 71-58.

The game remained tight throughout the first half. Princeton scored the first 5 points of the game, but St Joe’s responded quickly. Devin Cannady was particularly effective for the Tigers in the first half, connecting on 5 three pointers in the half. Neither team was able to take a commanding lead, and Princeton went to the locker room for halftime trailing 32-31.

Roughly midway through the second half, St Joe’s began to pull away, as Princeton’s offense went stagnant. Princeton was unable to replicate its hot shooting in the second half, connecting on just 3-15 second half three pointers. Princeton led 48-45 with about 10 minutes remaining in the second half, but St. Joe's went on a 14-2 run over the next four minutes to take a 59-50 lead. Princeton struggled to contain St Joseph's Freshman Taylor Funk during this period; he scored 10 of the teams 14 points on the run. 

With 5 minutes remaining, Princeton trailed by 10, as the raucous St Joe’s home crowd began to come alive. A serious comeback effort never materialized, and St. Joe’s ran out the clock to secure the 71-58 win.

Cannady led the Tigers in scoring with 22 points. Cannady was hot from behind the arc for much of the game, shooting 6-10 from 3-point territory. The other two members of Princeton’s Big 3, Myles Stephens and Amir Bell, added 13 and 15 points respectively. Combined, the three players scored 50 of Princeton’s 58 points. 

Funk led the way for St Joseph’s, scoring 23 points, and James Demery contributed 13. St Joe’s was careful with the ball throughout, committing only 4 turnovers and forcing 9. St. Joe's shot well, finishing with a 47% field goal percentage and a 37% 3-point percentage, compared to 41% and 31% for Princeton. 

With the loss, Princeton fell to 0-3 on the season, though the losses have been at the hands of strong teams from power conferences. The team will return home Wednesday to continue its non-conference schedule against Lafayette. In order to begin racking up wins, the team will need continued stellar performance from its stars, Cannady, Stephens, and Bell, as well as increased contribution from its role players.