Ponds leads St. John’s over Nebraska
St. John’s sophomore guard Shamorie Ponds had 22 points and seven rebounds in the Red Storm’s 79-56 victory over the Nebraska Cornhuskers at Carnesecca Arena in New York City on Thursday as part of the Gavitt Tipoff Games, which match Big East and Big Ten teams.
Guard Bashir Ahmed had 15 points, guard Marcus LoVett had 14 points and Justin Simon had 13 for the Red Storm (3-0).
The 6-foot-1 Ponds, who also had three assists, scored 21 points in a victory over Central Connecticut on Friday.
The Red Storm held Nebraska to 28.1 percent shooting from the field and had a 50-39 rebounding edge. Simon had 12 rebounds and center Tariq Owens had nine.
St. John’s has won its first three games, all at home, by an average of 21.3 points.
Guard James Palmer Jr. had 13 points and guard Evan Taylor had nine for the Cornhuskers (2-1). Palmer made 4 of 10 field goal attempts, including 1 of 2 on threes. The rest of the starters were 7 of 28.
Ponds had 14 points and six rebounds in the first half, which the Red Storm closed on an 18-8 run. LoVett’s basket at the buzzer made it 37-24 at halftime.
The Huskers were never closer than 12 points as St. John’s pulled away in the final 16 minutes.
Two free throws by Ponds made it 54-40 with 15:11 remaining, and Ponds’ layup gave made it a 70-49 lead with 7:52 left.
The Big East and Big Ten split the first six games of the Gavitt tournament, with two remaining.
Xavier and Wisconsin played later Thursday, and DePaul and Illinois are to meet Friday.