Comebacks, Upsets, Drama: Recapping a Big Night for the Big 5

Comebacks, Upsets, Drama: Recapping a Big Night for the Big 5

The Temple Owls weren't the only ones on the floor last night, and they definitely weren't the only ones pulling upsets and creating drama with their win over Duke.

The St. Joseph's Hawks and La Salle Explorers both had nights that fans of the two programs will figure to remember for at least a little while.

Starting with the Explorers, La Salle opened its A10 schedule with an 80-70 victory over the Xavier Musketeers, who have been having all sorts of issues since their brawl with Cincinnati on December 10th. The line heading into the game was less than three in most books. Ever hear of the phrase that "the line is saying something?" Well, in this case, it was speaking volumes as the Explorers took the lead on Chris Mack's embattled warriors (in their case, this is not hyperbole) with 12:45 to play in the first half and never trailed for the remainder of the game.

The win propels La Salle to 11-4 on the year, a record very few, if anyone, saw coming prior to the beginning of the season.

Speaking of teams on the rise playing out of their minds, the St. Joseph's Hawks are now apparently so good that they wait to get down 16 points before deciding that they're ready to win. Trailing 62-46 on the road at Duquesne, the Hawks ripped off an 18-4 run to cut the Dukes lead to just five with 4:49 remaining. They would ultimately force overtime and go on to win 82-80 in the extra period.

The Hawks, just like the Explorers, are now also 11-4 and 1-0 in conference play.

I know its early, and that conference play will shed greater light on what is and isn't for real about these two teams, but the Big 5 looks a whole lot better than many thought it would just two months ago, even without a strong showing from Villanova. With all this in mind, we're sending out a friendly reminder that St. Joseph's and La Salle will meet either each other or the Temple Owls six times between now and the end February.

For more on all the rest of the action, including Zack Rosen passing Jerome Allen on the all-time Penn point list, click here.

God, this is awesome. Here's some video of some kids storming the court somewhere after someone beat someone else.

Instant Replay: Phillies 4, Reds 3

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USA Today Images

Instant Replay: Phillies 4, Reds 3

BOX SCORE

The Phillies rallied for a 4-3 walk-off win over the Cincinnati Reds on Saturday.

Tommy Joseph won it with a single up the middle with no outs in the bottom of the ninth. The hit scored Aaron Altherr, who had singled and moved to second on a wild pitch.

The Phils have won just six of their last 27 games. Joseph has had a walk-off, game-winning hit in the last two wins.

In addition to Joseph, who also homered, the star of the game was the Phillies' bullpen. Four Phils' relievers combined on 3 2/3 scoreless innings after starter Jerad Eickhoff exited. The Phillies' bullpen is riding a 19 2/3-innings scoreless streak.

Starting pitching report
Eickhoff allowed eight hits and three runs over 5 1/3 innings. He gave up a bunt hit and a two-run homer to the first two batters of the game but took a 3-2 lead into the sixth inning. He allowed a leadoff single and a one-out RBI double in that inning as the Reds tied the game at 3-3.

Veteran Bronson Arroyo, back in action at age 40 after recovering from surgery the last two seasons, gave up three runs — all on solo homers — over five innings.

Bullpen report
Good work by Edubray Ramos to get two outs in the sixth to strand a runner in scoring position and preserve a 3-3 tie. Pat Neshek, Joaquin Benoit and Hector Neris each followed with a scoreless inning. Neris struck out dangerous Joey Votto on a splitter with a man on base to end the top of the ninth. He got the win.

Austin Brice pitched two scoreless innings for the Reds. Michael Lorenzen took the loss. He gave up two hits in the ninth. Joseph's game-winning hit came on a 97 mph heater.

At the plate
Cesar Hernandez, Michael Saunders and Joseph all clouted solo homers for the Phillies. Joseph has six homers in his last 21 games.

Zack Cozart smacked a two-run homer against Eickhoff in the first inning. The Reds tied the game on a one-out double by Scooter Gennett in the sixth.

Remembering Bunning
Jim Bunning died Friday night. Larry Bowa recalled the impact that the Hall of Famer had on his career (see story).

Up next
The series concludes Sunday afternoon. Zach Eflin (0-2, 5.36) and Scott Feldman (3-4, 3.99) are the pitchers.

Soul hold off Valor in 48-47 win, remain unbeaten on the season

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Soul hold off Valor in 48-47 win, remain unbeaten on the season

The Soul on Saturday survived a late scare and moved to 7-0 on the season with a 48-47 win over the Washington Valor at Verizon Center.

With 41 seconds left, the Valor scored a touchdown and appeared poised to tie up the game. However, a fumbled snap led to a failed extra-point attempt and the Soul promptly recovered the ensuing onside kick.

"It’s hard to win a game in arena football, but we'll take them any way we can," Soul head coach Clint Dolezel told the team's official website. "We are definitely happy with 7-0 and looking forward to this bye week to get healed up and ready to finish the second half of the season." 

Soul quarterback Dan Raudabaugh led the way with 148 passing yards and five touchdowns. Wide receiver Ryan McDaniel led the team with four receptions, racking up 49 yards, while Darius Reynolds had 54 yards on three receptions. Each receiver reeled in two touchdown catches while Shaun Kauleinamoku accounted for the fifth score.

Running back Mykel Benson ran in a one-yard touchdown while Chirs Duvalt returned a kickoff 58 yards for a touchdown before halftime.

The Soul have a bye week before returning to the Wells Fargo Center on June 10 to face the Cleveland Gladiators.