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City 6 Roundup: Drexel upsets College of Charleston on Moore's last-second shot

02/03/2023, 1:15am EST
By Josh Verlin & Owen McCue

Josh Verlin (@jmverlin) &
Owen McCue (@Owen_McCue)

While the CoBL staff has been focusing on the high school world the last few weeks, we wanted to make sure we were keeping everybody up to date on the City 6. Here are a few recent results, storylines and games to know for the upcoming weekend:


Drexel freshman Justin Moore hit the game-winner against College of Charleston on Thursday night. (Photo: Josh Verlin/CoBL File)

Drexel men upset Charleston to get back on track

Justin Moore called ‘game.’

The Dragons’ point guard capped one of the best games of his freshman season with a game-winning mid-range jumper, pulling up from just outside the right elbow and burying the shot to lift Drexel past Colonial Athletic Association frontrunner College of Charleston 70-69 at a packed (and loud) Daskalakis Athletic Center on Thursday night.

“I was supposed to get to the rim, but I saw I had a mismatch, I didn’t think he could guard me,” Moore said afterwards. “I gave him a little move and put it up there, and it went in. It’s a great feeling, just knowing everybody has your back — and once you make that shot, it’s an even better feeling, because you get to celebrate with your guys.”


Moore’s jumper capped a 16-point night for the Archbishop Wood product, as well as a comeback from 13 points down for Drexel (13-10, 7-4 CAA), which trailed by that margin early in the second half against a Charleston squad (21-3, 9-2) which has now lost two straight after a 20-game winning streak.

It’s the seventh game in a row in double figures for Moore, who struggled with his shot early in his rookie collegiate season but certainly seems to be hitting his stride of late, making more than 40% of his shots in his recent string of strong offensive play. He added eight rebounds plus four assists in 30 minutes on Thursday, playing every bit like the franchise point guard that Zach Spiker and staff expected him to be when they recruited him out of the Philadelphia Catholic League.

“It’s big time, regardless of whether my numbers are down or up,” Moore said of his game-winner. “At the beginning of the season I was struggling, but I just grew over time, and I’ve always had confidence in my jump shot. I always just stuck with it and kept working on it, so when those moments come, I’m comfortable.”

Amari Williams led Drexel with a 19-point, 12-rebound double-double, adding four blocks — including a crucial one in the final minute that helped the Dragons force a shot-clock violation with 13 seconds remaining, setting up Moore’s game-winner. Coletrane Washington added 13 points, including a critical 3-pointer with 4:24 remaining that snapped an 0-for-13 start to the game from deep, pulling the Dragons within three points. 

The win was a much-needed bounce-back for Drexel, which had been 6-2 in the CAA before blowing an 11-point lead on the road at North Carolina A&T and then getting thoroughly outplayed at three-win Elon to fall back into the pack. Thursday’s win left them the only 7-4 team in the league, alone in fifth place out of 13 with seven games left in the regular season.

“I think a lot of people talk about the teams at the top of the division and they kind of forget us,” Spiker said. “It was all, hey, (Charleston’s) lost a game, and we lost two as well. I thought we responded in a great way, and I’m just very, very very proud of our players, and their attitudes and their efforts.”

Villanova senior Maddy Siegrist poses with coach Denise Dillon before a game earlier this season. (Photo: Josh Verlin/CoBL File)

Villanova women keep rolling

Though the Wildcats snapped a nine-game winning streak on Sunday at UConn, they nearly pulled off a road upset as they held a two-point lead entering the fourth quarter before the Huskies rallied for a 63-58 win. Villanova actually climbed a few spots up to No. 19 in the polls earlier this week despite the loss and followed with a 73-54 home win against Marquette on Wednesday. 

The Wildcats (19-4, 10-2), who finished as the league runner-up last season, are the clearcut No. 2 in the Big East — two games behind the Huskies (13-0) and two games ahead of Creighton (9-4) in the loss column. Maddy Siegrist, who recently became the program’s then Big 5’s women’s all-time scoring leader, is still the country’s scoring leader at 28.2 ppg. After a slow stretch, sophomore Lucy Olsen’s been terrific as of late with games of 19, 19, 19 and 16 in her last four.


Temple men getting ready for major opportunity against No. 3 Houston

This non-conference part of the Owls’ season was a strange one with major highs and lows, sometimes coming in consecutive games. But Temple, which game into the season with NCAA Tournament hopes, has looked much more like the squad it expected to be since conference play began, currently 8-2 in The American in second place and one-game behind first place Houston (9-1). With overtime wins against South Florida and Central Florida last week, the Owls have won four in a row, including a Jan. 22 road victory at then-No. 1 Houston. Temple will have another chance to take on the Cougars Sunday at the Liacouras Center with first place in the conference on the line.

Click here for Josh Verlin’s preview of Sunday’s big game


St. Joe’s men finally turning the corner? 

Just three weeks ago, it was looking like it was going to be yet another forgettable season for Billy Lange’s squad, which was sitting at 6-10 on the season, 0-4 in Atlantic 10 play. But the Hawks certainly look like they’re starting to figure things out, winning five of the last six, including a 14-point win over Rhode Island on Wednesday to get back to 11-11 (5-5). With winnable games ahead, the momentum might finally be starting to build again on Hawk Hill.

Click here for Owen McCue’s story on the Hawks’ recent success


Moore’s return not fix-all for Villanova men

In case you missed the news prior to the Eagles game on Sunday, Villanova redshirt-senior guard Justin Moore returned on Sunday against Providence at the Wells Fargo Center from an Achilles tear suffered in the Elite Eight  last season. While Villanova led with about eight minutes left, Moore’s return was sullied by a 70-65 loss to the Friars. The Wildcats followed with a 73-64 loss to Marquette on Wednesday to drop to 10-12 overall and 4-7 in Big East play. Moore, Villanova’s second leading scorer last season at 14.8 ppg, hasn’t been that same player in two games back, posting five points on 2-of-8 shooting and nine points on 2-of-9 shooting against Providence and Marquette, respectively. He has grabbed four rebounds and tallied four assists apiece in the two games in an average of 32 minutes of action.


Temple's Aleah Nelson has played 40 minutes in each of the Owls' last two games. (Photo: Josh Verlin/CoBL File)

Dismissals don’t seem to be bothering Temple women

The Temple News reported the suspension of sophomore guards Jasha Clinton and Aniya Gourdine and voluntary departure of graduate forward Jalynn Holmes and Kourtney Wilson on Jan. 25 and two days later the university released a statement that declared Clinton and Gourdine had been dismissed from the team. Clinton, the 2021 Big Rookie of the Year, averaged 11.1 ppg and 3.0 rpg in 28.8 minutes per contest, starting in 16 of the 18 games she played. After missing the first 12 games, Gourdine averaged 4.8 ppg and 3.5 rpg in 20 minutes per contest. 

Since their departures, the Owls have won their last three games against Tulane, UCF and Wichita State to get over .500 in conference play with 10-11 overall mark and 5-4 record in The American. The Owls have just eight active players on their roster with graduate guard Kendall Currence out all season with an ACL injury and redshirt-junior forward Rayne Tucker still not cleared to play after transferring from Towson. Senior guard Aleah Nelson (15.7 ppg, 4.1 apg) played in all 40 minutes of the last two wins. Sophomore guard Tiarra East has made three straight starts, scoring 20,12 and 14 in those wins.


As for the rest…

— Drexel’s women have bounced back from their own two-game losing streak, beating Hofstra and Elon at home last week to move to 15-5 (7-2 CAA) this season, tied with Stony Brook for second place in the CAA. They’re on the road for two more this weekend, at Northeastern (10-9, 5-3) on Friday and then at Stony Brook on Sunday, where they can see if one of the CAA’s newcomers is ready for one of its powerhouses.

— La Salle’s women lost to VCU 53-38 on Wednesday, snapping a five-game winning streak that had the Explorers (14-9, 5-3 A-10) heading right up towards the top of the conference. They have another big test coming up on Saturday against UMass (18-4, 8-1) in the only regular-season meeting between the two programs. With seven games left in the regular season, the No. 2 preseason pick in the league doesn’t have too much time left to assure itself a good seed in the A-10 tournament.

— La Salle’s men picked up their first win in three weeks on Wednesday night, taking out George Washington 75-64 behind a balanced scoring effort; Khalil Brantley (15 points), Josh Nickelberry (12), Jhamir Brickus (11) and Fousseyni Drame (10) all finished in double figures as the Explorers shot 49.1% (26-of-53) from the floor. At 9-13 (3-6 A-10), La Salle has work to do to avoid playing in the first round of the Atlantic 10 tournament for the third year in a row. Up next: the Big 5 contest at a hot St. Joe’s this Saturday, followed by a trip to St. Bonaventure on Wednesday.

— Penn’s women jumped out to a 4-0 start in the Ivy, including a victory over first place Columbia. The Quakers have gone 2-2 since, dropping lopsided games to Princeton (55-40) and Harvard (84-60) while picking up decisive home wins over Dartmouth (69-57) and Yale (79-57). At 5-2 in the league, Penn is currently tied with the Tigers and Crimson in second place, a game behind Columbia. The Quakers face the Lions on Friday in a game that could cause a log jam at the top of the Ivy standings or drop Penn down to fourth.

— Penn’s men halted a three-game skid in the Ivy with a non-league win over Hartford last week followed by a conference win over Harvard on Saturday. The Quakers (11-11, 3-4 Ivy) have a prime opportunity Friday night to get back to .500 in league play against last place Columbia (6-16, 1-6). Then they will catch first place Cornell (15-5, 5-2) at the Palestra on Saturday. With the Big Red coming off a first place tilt with Princeton (14-6, 5-2), Penn could figure out a way to sneak back into the league r ace.

— St. Joe’s women recently dropped two heartbreakers. The Hawks fell 94-90 at Richmond in overtime on Sunday then had an upset bid at A-10 first place team Rhode Island on Wednesday end with a 77-73 double overtime loss. After jumping out to a 4-0 start in conference play, the Hawks (15-7, 5-5) have now dropped five of their last six to fall to seventh in the standings. They don’t play again until next Wednesday at home against VCU (7-14, 4-5)

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