Yesterday, three Hawks received Atlantic Ten Honors. DeAndre Bembry won Play of the Year as well as being voted First Team All-A10, Isaiah Miles won Most Improved Player along with Second Team recognition, while Freshman Lamarr Kimble was voted to the All-Freshman Team. Each of these players for the Hawks are going to be key to making a run in the A-10 tournament and beyond.
The key player driving the Hawks is DeAndre Bembry, the leader and team captain of Saint Joseph’s. Bembry is averaging 17 poins, 7.8 rebounds and 4.5 assists per game. Along with his offense stats, Bembry also is one of the best defensive players on the team, averaging a steal and a half per game. In order for the Hawks to make a run in the A-10, Bembry is going to need to be the best player on the floor, as he has been so many times this year. He will need to make plays, score points and lead his team, who is looking for an NCAA bid after missing out of the dance last year. Bembry is going to have to elevate his game and get the Hawks back on track after a shaky end to the regular season, where they lost 3 of their last five while giving up 98 or more twice. He will have to lock down defensively and bring the confidence back to the floor.
The next key player on the Hawks is senior Isaiah Miles, who is averaging 18 points and 8.1 rebounds a game. Miles has been great for the Hawks this season, elevating his game to new levels. Miles is shooting 52.8% from the field, up 14% from a year ago. Mile is also averaging 3 rebounds and just over 7 points per game than he was last year. His free throw percentage is also up 13 points from a year ago, to 87.6%. Overall, Miles rightfully so won Most Improved Player. Miles is going to have to continue his season long tear of scoring the ball if the Hawks are going to be successful. Miles will have to take the big shots and make plays, especially down the stretch, as the Hawks will look to get him more touches in clutch time.
Lamarr Kimble, the Philadelphia native freshman, is the third Hawk who was honored yesterday. Kimble, the back-up point guard, has been anything but a back-up this season. After a shaky adjustment period, Kimble has gotten comfortable with the offense and began to play at a high level. Kimble, who shares time with sophomore Shavar Newkirk, has been a contributor to the Hawks winning ways. He is a fearless player, not afraid to take big shots in big games, as he did against Dayton and Temple. He averages just under 6 points a game, but controls tempo and keep the team composed on the floor. Recently, Kimble has been on a tear, scoring double digits in 4 of the last 6 games. Kimble is going to be playing significant minutes in March, where every minute counts. Kimble is not afraid of the big game, though, as he has played in several big games in his high school career. Kimble was the starting guard in games including Philadelphia Catholic League, District 12 and State Championship games. He seems to up his play come playoff time, and hopefully for the Hawks, he will continue as the Hawks look for their first NCAA bid since 2013-2014 season.