May 15, 2016 |
Some of Joe Cassidy's best memories as a college basketball coach are captured from the same angle: Off to the side and slightly in the background. There's Rowan coach John Giannini and the Profs celebrating the program's only national title in 1996. Cassidy is there, an assistant coach reveling in the moment. There's Giannini and the Profs making the NCAA Division III Final Four in 1993 and 1995, taking the program to unprecedented heights in advance of that breakthrough in 1996.
April 27, 2016 |
WHEN YOU go 0-6 in the city, have the worst loss in school history, finish last in the Atlantic 10, get your only true road win against Rowan, lose to Philadelphia University in an exhibition game and are 9-22, you need drastic changes. La Salle will start next season with its top six scorers returning and six new players, four transfers and two freshmen recruits. Some of those top six scorers are going to find it harder to get playing time. The changes appear to be, in many cases, upgrades.
March 11, 2016 |
NEW YORK - La Salle has been playing in the Atlantic 10 since 1995-96. During that time, the Explorers have won more than one game in the conference tournament exactly once. That was in 2002, the first of coach Billy Hahn's three seasons, when they beat Fordham and Temple at the Spectrum before getting sent home by Richmond in the semifinals. Thursday night at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, in the last of the four second-round matchups, the Explorers had an opportunity to do it again, three years after they'd won three NCAA games in five days.
February 29, 2016 |
Jordan Price often found himself thinking about "Uncle Johnny" as he led La Salle to its 76-68 win against George Mason on Saturday. Just a few hours before the 2 p.m. tipoff at Tom Gola Arena, the Explorers' guard attended the funeral for Johnny Harris, a close family friend who died Tuesday. "I just wanted to come out here and just play for him and honor him," Price, 21, said minutes after his game-high 24 points keyed last-place La Salle to just its third win in Atlantic Ten play.
February 26, 2016 |
Everything is relative with this season's La Salle team, which has dealt with six- and 10-game losing streaks and had won just twice since Thanksgiving weekend. Trying to win two of three (even if the middle game was a 40-point loss) may not seem like much, but when you are closing on 20 losses, any good news is a positive. When the game turned toward Fordham in the second half Wednesday night at Tom Gola Arena and the Rams built a 10-point lead, a comeback, given all that had gone down, did not seem very likely.
February 25, 2016 |
As his team has suffered one frustrating loss after another, La Salle junior Jordan Price has had to readjust his thinking. Where winning once may have been taken for granted, this season Price has found how difficult it can be to accumulate a simple W. So when La Salle upset St. Bonaventure, 71-64, on Feb. 17 to snap a 10-game losing streak, Price rediscovered the joy of winning. "It was a rare feeling for us this year, and you just try to enjoy it as much as you can," Price said.
February 19, 2016 |
ON PAPER, La Salle was due for another blowout loss Wednesday night. Losers of 10 straight games - all by double digits - and 17 of 18 overall, the Explorers faced a St. Bonaventure squad that had won five straight, was 17-6 overall and on the NCAA Tournament bubble. Good thing for the Explorers that the game was played on wood inside Tom Gola Arena. Somehow, the Explorers overcame their 17 turnovers (to just 11 for the Bonnies), a 4-minute, 59-second stretch midway through the second half in which they didn't score a basket, and still came away with an impressive, 71-64 Atlantic 10 win. "Obviously we beat a very good team who's been playing very well and we gave a great effort," La Salle coach John Giannini said.
February 17, 2016 |
AFTER NEARLY two decades at La Salle, what Tom Brennan cherishes most are the relationships. "For me, working in athletics, it's always been an opportunity to make a difference," he said on Monday, after the university announced he will no longer be its athletic director once the basketball season is over. "On one level, you help transform the lives of students. You get to connect with lots of different stakeholders, as we call them. And that's what's really rewarding, to be in that kind of a position.
February 8, 2016 |
The four of them sit at the end of the La Salle bench and provide some context to the struggles of this season and perhaps a glimpse as to what the Explorers of next season, with a full bench, might look like. La Salle coach John Giannini has mentioned multiple times that he "overestimated" and "misevaluated" some things while "under-recruiting" this group, blaming himself for what's become a lost season on Olney Avenue. He's talked about those four guys, though: transfers B.J. Johnson (Syracuse)
February 5, 2016 |
With their matching white headbands, dark shoes and white socks, Korey Billbury and Jordan Price looked like twins wearing different colors on the floor of Tom Gola Arena. For large portions of the game, wherever Price was on the La Salle offensive end, Billbury stood right with him, making it nearly impossible to get the ball in the hands of La Salle's leading scorer, let alone get him a good look at the basket. Virginia Commonwealth, the top team in the Atlantic Ten, knew the best way to beat the Explorers, the league's cellar-dweller: keep the league's second-leading scorer off the scoreboard as much as possible.