Johnnies hold on, close out 19-1 conference run

More news about: St. Thomas

Senior center Tyler Weiss contributed a game-high 20 points to go with eight rebounds and three blocks as No. 3-ranked St. John's overcame a sluggish offensive game for both teams to beat the host Tommies, 57-50, and cap off a 19-1 MIAC season.

It was just the second home loss of the season for St. Thomas (14-11 overall, 12-8 MIAC). With a standing-room crowd of near 1,800 on hand, the Tommies only had six turnovers but had the program's lowest offensive output in 13 seasons as they shot just 32 percent from the field (20-of-63) and made only 5-of-13 at the foul line.

Lucas Walford added eight points, 16 boards and three blocks for the Johnnies (23-2, 19-1), who won their first conference regular-season crown since 2001 and improved six wins from their fourth-place finsh of 2016-17.

The Johnnies led 29-18 at halftime, thanks in part to 5-of-10 point shooting from behind the arc.  SJU pushed the lead to 13 early in the second half but would only make 1-of-10 treys on the second half as their lead evaporated. SJU, which came in averaging 80 points a contest, closed with its lowest offensive game in three seasons, and the 107 combined points were the fewest for a Tommie-Johnnie game in 21 seasons.

St. Thomas cut the deficit to one twice in the final eight minutes but never regained a lead. The Toms went scoreless in the final 1:29.

Ryan Boll had 11 points, all in the second half, to lead St. Thomas. Freshman Burt Hedstrom had 10 points and eight rebounds, and G.T. Johnson added nine points and 12 rebounds. Johnson's defense helped slow SJU shooting ace junior guard David Stokman, a 1,000-point career scorer, who scored just one point over 19 minutes.

St. John's is the MIAC playoff top seed and has a Wednesday night round-one bye. The Toms are the fifth seed and play Wednesday at No. 4 seed Augsburg, a team it lost to twice in the regular season.