St. John’s Women, Men Eliminated from Postseason Basketball Tournaments

Both the St. John’s University, Jamaica, women’s and men’s basketball teams were ousted from their respective postseason basketball tournaments this past weekend.

Playing in the first round of NCAA Tournament, the women’s team dropped a 96-90 double overtime contest to the University of Dayton, Dayton, Ohio, Sunday at Carnesecca Arena.

The Red Storm trailed by 13 with 5:20 remaining in the second half but battled back to tie the game. But the Flyers advanced to the second round with the win.

St. John's Nadirah McKenith (Photo by Diana Colapietro, The Torch / St. John's University)
St. John’s Nadirah McKenith (Photo by Diana Colapietro, The Torch / St. John’s University)

St. John’s senior Nadirah McKenith was one rebound shy of a triple-double, finishing with 22 pts., 10 assists and nine rebounds. Her lay-up with one-tenth of a second left in regulation forced the first overtime.

Fellow senior Shenneika Smith added 18 pts. in what turned out to be her final game for the Red Storm. She finished as the school’s fourth leading scorer all-time, while McKenith is now the school’s all-time assists leader.

Freshman guard Ashley Perez recorded a career-high 17 pts. and drilled three-pointers.

The game marked the first-time in school history that an NCAA Tournament game was played at St. John’s.

“I will always remember this one,” Smith said. “This one hurts more than freshman year because it’s our last one. We had a couple of years to get back. This one you’ll always have in your memory. Nadirah and I have a chance to move on and do great things for ourselves. This will always be in our mind.”

On the men’s side, the Red Storm fell 68-50 at the hands of the University of Virginia, Charlottesville, Va., in the second round of the NIT.

“Extending our season with the opportunity to participate in the NIT was a valuable experience for our young team,” said head coach Steve Lavin. “This season served as an important building block in continuing our efforts to elevate the St. John’s basketball program into a sustainable winner.”

Phil Greene IV led the Red Storm with 18 pts., while JaKarr Sampson poured in 14.

The loss pushed the Red Storm’s record to 17-16 for the year, which marks the 83rd winning season in program history. The Johnnies earned a 63-61 win over St. Joseph’s University, Philadelphia, in the first round of the NIT.