George Washington 58, Saint Joseph’s 48
ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. (AP)—Maureece Rice scored 16 points and George Washington forced 21 turnovers and held Saint Joseph’s to a season-low 24 percent shooting from the field in a 58-48 win in the quarterfinals of the Atlantic 10 Conference tournament on Thursday night.
Carl Elliott added 15 points and Rob Diggs had 13 as the third-seeded Colonials (21-8) won their sixth straight game and moved within two victories of capturing their second conference tournament in three years.
Their next opponent will be seventh-seeded Saint Louis, which upset second-seeded Massachusetts 74-71 in overtime earlier Thursday night. Top-seeded and defending champion Xavier will play fourth-seeded Rhode Island in the other semifinal at Boardwalk Hall.
Ahmad Nivens scored 14 of his 18 points from the foul line for Saint Joseph’s (18-14), which struggled with George Washington’s matchup zone. Darrin Govens added 10 for the Hawks, whose point total was its second lowest of the season. The turnover total was one off the season high.
George Washington never trailed in the game, but they had to cope with a couple of Saint Joseph’s spurts.
The last one came when Nivins scored inside with 8:04 to play to cut the George Washington lead to 43-37. However, Rice sandwiched a jumper and a layup around a free throw by Elliott for a 48-37 lead.
Rice also had two 3-pointers in a 14-3 spurt that closed the first half and gave the Colonials a 33-21 lead.