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The Red Storm were sloppy with the ball, allowing the Blue Demons to go on a 16-0 run in the second half, capped by a Dar Tucker fast-break layup with 4:44 to go. Tucker had 12 of his 16 points after halftime and shot 7-of-12 from the floor in only 20 minutes.The irony of it all? Tucker, like eight players on the St. John's roster, is a freshman."I'm not gonna make the excuse and say we're young," Burrell said. "We had a chance to win all our games. We just didn't get it done."The 6-foot-8 forward had 18 points and 11 rebounds, but was upset after the game. He was not satisfied with his performance."We lost, so I didn't make enough of an impact," Burrell said. "We have one win in the Big East right now - I gotta do more."St. John's (7-8, 1-3 Big East) squandered a 41-35 lead with 9:19 left and has a brutal schedule forthcoming - at West Virginia; Pittsburgh at Madison Square Garden; at Louisville and then Georgetown at MSG. If there were any must-win in the early conference season, DePaul - on campus - was it."Any road win in this league is obviously treasured," Blue Demons coach Jerry Wainwright said.Junior forward Anthony Mason Jr. finished with 11 points on 4-of-14 shooting and senior point guard Eugene Lawrence had five points on 2-of-5 shooting. They combined for 10 turnovers (also 13 assists) and coach Norm Roberts chose to play freshman Malik Boothe instead of Lawrence in the final minutes.It was the second straight game that Boothe seemed more effective running the team. Against Connecticut on Jan. 8, the Rosedale native and Christ the King grad had seven points and no turnovers in only 16 minutes.Roberts was not ready to turn the reins over to Boothe just yet, though."You gotta go with the horses that brung you," the fourth-year coach said.Mac Koshwal and Draelon Burns had 10 points apiece for DePaul (7-8, 3-1) and Wesley Green added 12 rebounds. St. John's won the battle of the boards, though, 39-31. That was a positive for Roberts, but once again the Red Storm couldn't score consistently, missing layups and putbacks around the basket. They shot 34 percent from the field for the game and had 15 turnovers. The Blue Demons shot 58 percent after halftime."If you don't execute the last five, six minutes of the game, you'll get beat," Roberts said.It's something his freshmen are quickly learning; it's a lesson his veterans could use, as well."Even our older guys," Roberts said, "pressed a bit." Reach Associate Sports Editor Marc Raimondi by e-mail at email@example.com or call 718-229-0300, Ext. 130.
©2008 Community Newspaper Group
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