Demons Downed By Johnnies

DePaul 0-3 in Big East Play, Trouble Brewing

In a game that both teams needed, the St. Johns’s Red Storm prevailed in an ugly, forgettable victory.

Not all was bad at first.  Charlie Moore hit a 3 pointer at the 16 minute mark.  We like when Charlie finds his long-distance stroke.  DePaul took at six point lead at 13-7 with 14:31 in the half.  The players were playing loose and confident.  Of course, it rapidly changed after that.  A quick 3, a turnover leading to a layup, and it was a one point game.  From that point on, the Demons were never up by more than 4 points.  The teams exchanged the lead several times for the next few minutes until the Red Storm began to take control of the game taking a lead that they would never relinquish with 6:12 to go in the 1st half.  DePaul went over 3 minutes without a point, during which the Jonnies went on a 10-0 run getting the lead to 6 points.

With 1:24 left in the half, Paul Reed finally got on the board to cut the St. John’s lead to 3.  DePaul  played strong defense to get the ball back with the chance to tie and 1:09 left in the half.  Then badness occurred.  Moore missed a layup, DePaul played excellent defense again, getting the ball with 32 left.  After running the clock down to less then 10, Devin Gage missed a wild shot which lead to this awful sequence.

So instead of being down 1 or being tied, the Blue Demons found themselves down 5 and extremely hot-headed going into the locker room.


Something Bad Happened Early in the 2nd Half

St. John’s started the 2nd half on a quick 6-0 run to extend the lead to 11.

Not sure what occurred, but Paul Reed was subbed for Darious Hall with 17:17 left in the half.  Leitao and Reed had a conversation, and we didn’t see Reed in the game for another 9 minutes.

It was clearly something related to defensive responsibilities, but call me crazy, in a game that might make or break your early conference season, leaving your best player on the bench, while other guys are getting into foul trouble, against a deep team, might not be the best decision making.  I don’t know what was said, but clearly it was something Bad.

The lead fluctuated between 6 to 10 points until the 11:21 mark after dunks by Butz and Hall, and a layup by Moore got the Demons to within 4 points.

Of course, the Red Storm went on their own run to go up 12 with 8:11 to go.  Finally, after  9 minutes and 6 seconds of game time, Dave Leitao allowed Paul Reed back into the game.

At 6:28 left in the half, Jalen Coleman-Lands made his first 3 point shot of the game and DePaul’s 2nd of the game, after a stretch of 6 consecutive team missed 3 point shots.

And then JCL made a second in a row followed by another Hall basket to get it to 7 with 5:34 to go.

At 2:33 left in the game, Paul Reed made his 2nd and last shot of the game to get it to 5.  It was desperation time, and DePaul’s defense played like it.  The Johnnies were playing like they wanted to give the game away; the Blue Demons just had to take it.

DePaul forced a steal and Moore lined up Coleman-Lands for a catch and shoot 3 point shot.  JCL missed.  Butz rebounded retaining ball possession.  Moore then took a questionable running jumper that he missed.    St. John’s rebounded and called timeout.  Paul Reed made a steal and was away for a fast break but fumbled the ball and had it stolen.

Then the Red Storm missed another shot leading to Moore setting up JCL for another catch and shoot 3.  He missed but was fouled.  For the 2nd game in a row, JCL had to make 3 clutch free-throws to keep the Demons in the game.  He missed the 1st.  He missed the 2nd.  Finally, on his 3rd shot Coleman-Lands connected cutting the lead to 4, but it was too late.

Even though St. Johns did not make a field goal in the final 6:03, they managed to hold the Blue Demons off.  It was there for the taking, and DePaul failed, yet again.

The Good

Jaylen Butz

Butz, coming back from an injury, was excellent.  He went 6-6 from the field with 9 rebounds for 17 points.  He also had 2 assists and a block.  His offensive rating for the game was 119 due to missing 4 free-throws.

Darious Hall

Hall played aggressive defense and was a finishing machine.  He finished with 11 points.


The Bad

3 Point Shooting

Charlie Moore hit a 3 pointer in the 1st 4 minutes of the game, and then the Demons proceeded to miss 6 in a row.  Finally, 29 minutes and 32 seconds later, DePaul made their 2nd team 3 pointer.  For the game, the men in blue went 3-15 or 20%.  This is the 3rd game in a row in which they have shot under 24%.  It is hard to win shooting that badly.

Free Throw Shooting

16-27 on the game for 59%.  The killer was JCL missing 2 of 3 three late in the game, when he could have cut the Red Storm lead to 2.


In the game preview, it was noted that St. John’s creates a ton of turnovers, and that the Demons needed to be clean with the ball.  DePaul turned it over 19 times.  This one was my favorite.

Dave Leitao and the Coaching Staff

The offense stagnated for several minutes.  Communication issues with the players.  Difficulties in handling the ball pressure.  Possible dissension within the team.  The Demons are staying on the East Coast for Tuesday’s game against Villanova.  I truly hope the coaches and players can get reunited.

Paul Reed

Reed had his worst scoring game since the Creighton game last year.  He shot 2-7 from the field putting up an Offensive rating of 57 (100 is average).  He did have 12 rebounds.  I know he is frustrated beyond belief.  Paul, if you are listening, we are all behind you.  Keep working hard.

Romeo Weems

Weems uncharacteristically went scoreless and was in constant foul trouble.  He played a total of 13 minutes and had 3 turnovers and 4 fouls.   I love Weems and the Demons need him to be impactful every game.

The Interesting

Flynn Cameron sighting

Cameron received 5 minutes of playing time down the stretch in the 1st half.  I am guessing it was because of his height.  Our smaller guards were having issues seeing over the individual press, so Leitao wanted to bring in his tallest ball handler.

Charlie Moore

Charlie Moore worked his butt off playing the entire 40 minutes of the game.  He had 5 turnovers and went 4-12 from the field, but he did have 12 assists.  Considering the defensive pressure that he had to deal with, he did ok.  He had a couple of questionable shot selections, but he did set up others for success.

Where Do We Go from Here?

It doesn’t get any easier.


Road game at Villanova who has an 18 game winning streak against DePaul.  DePaul last won against the Wildcats at home in 2008.  We follow that with league leading, top 10 ranked Butler.



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