All UC transactions were Cash only in the first half. The senior point guard scored 61.9% of the Bearcat points. Though they led most of the half Cincinnati trails 24-21 midway home.
Cashmere Wright scored 8 of Cincinnati's first 13 points Saturday afternoon. For a deferential starter it was quite a first half outpouring.
Mick Cronin noticed how vital Wright was Saturday, removing him just one possession prior to the third TV timeout.
A triple with 6:10 to play extended the UC lead to seven points and forced St. John's Head Coach Steve Lavin to call a brief timeout.
Cashmere Wright slipped the ball free from Harrison and Harrison threw a pass away on the first two St. John's possessions. For a team trying to settle into a foreign atmosphere early turnovers are never welcomed.
St. John's did not convert single score before the first TV timeout.
Phil Greene IV also made a horrible passearly.
Cincinnati's defense and erratic individual decisions by St. John's players combined to create 12 first half turnovers. The Bearcats committed 11 themselves leading to 12 points off turnovers by St. John's.
University of Cincinnati coaches recruited Obekpa for ten months, often considered the leader throughout, though neither Obekpa nor his coaches would confirm these assumptions.
With 17:48 officials stopped play. Blood was the cause. Very early in the contest Christopher Obekpa had sustained a cut upper lip inside his mouth. Thanks to the outpouring of blood Obekpa's minor injury looked much, much worse than it truly was.
"That's what you get for choosing the wrong school," shouted a UC student from the baseline mass.
Saturday's game represents the second consecutive Bearcat basketball game during which blood was drawn. Put in another light all Big East opponents have literally been bloodied this season by UC.
Becoming a college scorer
Despite heavy minutes against Pittsburgh Jermaine Sanders still hasn't adapted to Big East Conference defense. Today he showed dramatic improvements. To begin his day he offered a three-pointer from the corner. It did not fall, but he pumped home a layup against a power forward next time down.
With 3:34 Sanders slashed along the baseline and offered a left-handed layup in traffic. It nearly fell.
The scoring problems of University of Cincinnati could clearly be linked to the length of St. John's. Time after time, possession after possession the Bearcat scorers found a driving lane only to be thwarted by a wonderfully athletic block.
Not only does the Johnny defense feature the conference's leading shot-blocker they also run out two springy wings in 6'6"Amir Garrett and 6'8" JaKarr Sampson.
Three blocks were registered by UC Athletic Communications. It felt like more. Either way the Bearcats struggled mightily from the field, 28.6%.
Strategic alterations are mandatory. Time for Coach Cronin to show off that brilliant basketball mind and bring home the Bearcat win.