Jamaica, N.Y. – UMBC made an early second half run at St. John's, but the hot-shooting Red Storm responded and came away with a 75-53 victory at Carnesecca Arena.
UMBC (0-2) forced 18 turnovers, but only converted them into 13 points and shot a paltry 26.9 percent from the field. The Retrievers attempted 15 more shots than did the hosts, but converted nine fewer, as St. John's (2-0) hit 27-of-52 (51.9%).
The Retrievers came out of the locker room brightly to start the second half, trimming an early 33-24 deficit to 33-31 after a three-pointer by Sherburne with 17:09 to play. UMBC hit five of its first six shots to open the half, but the Red Storm responded with a 14-6 run to lead 47-37 with Elliott buried a trey to trim the deficit to 47-40 at the midpoint of the half, but five straight St. John's points vaulted the lead back to double figures, where it would stay the rest of the way.
Sherburne corralled nine rebounds, nearly posting his first career double-double and added three steals. Elliott scored all 16 of his points after intermission, hitting 6-of-11 shots, after missing all seven attempts in the first 20 minutes. Senior post Cody Joyce (Churchton, Md./Southern) led all players with 10 rebounds and scored seven points.
St. John's freshman guard Federico Mussini led three players in double figures for the hosts and scored a game-high 18 points.
The Retrievers stayed within striking distance in the first half, by forcing 10 Red Storm turnovers, limiting the hosts to 26 field goal attempts and four free throw tries. But UMBC missed its first six shots and never warmed up, misfiring on 25 of 33 shots from the floor an six-of-nine from the charity stripe.
Sherburne gave the Retrievers a late boost, as he drained his final two long-distance shots of the half and sophomore guard Malcolm Brent (Silver Spring, Md.) hit a short jumper to bring UMBC to within 29-22 with 22 seconds remaining in the half. But Mussini countered Brent's mid-range shot with one of his own to give St. John's a 31-22 halftime advantage.
St. John's edged UMBC on the glass, 41-38, but the Retrievers garnered 17 offensive rebounds and only allowed five.
UMBC opens the home schedule on Wednesday, Nov. 18 when they host cross-town rival Loyola (Md.). Tip-off time is slated for 7:00 p.m.