NEW YORK DAILY NEWS
Updated: Wednesday, November 25, 2015, 1:15 AM
Ron Mvouika (l.) improve on Monday’s disaster vs. Vanderbilt, but still end up on the losing end of a 83-73 defeat at the hands of Indiana in Day 2 of the Maui Invitational.
St. John’s fell to No. 13 Indiana in the Maui Invitational Tuesday, but considered the 83-73 defeat an improvement following Monday’s 37-point loss to No. 19 Vanderbilt.
“Defense was much better,” St. John’s coach Chris Mullin said, “and I told the team if we play like that, we’ll be rewarded.”
ROUGH SURF: ST. JOHN’S FACING HOOP GIANTS IN MAUI
His unit will have to keep an eye out for Chaminade, a Division II program, in the seventh-place game on Wednesday. Mullin’s crew lost its exhibition opener by 32 points when it failed to slow St. Thomas Aquinas College, also a Division II program, on Nov. 4.
The Red Storm (3-2) fared better against the ranked Hoosiers (4-1), closing a 13-point deficit to six down the stretch before Indiana put the game away. Indiana’s tandem of senior point guard Yogi Ferrell (22 points) and freshman center Thomas Bryant (19 points) proved the difference.
“Teams can make runs, and when they make runs, you’ve got to find a way to stop the bleeding,” Ferrell said.
St. John’s coach Chris Mullin has watched his team lose its first two games of the Maui Inviational.
Freshman guard Federico Mussini continued to pace the Red Storm with 17 points and four steals. Swingman Ron Mvouika also scored 17.
St. John’s shot 43% — much better than in its Maui opener, when it shot just 30%.
“A lot of it is from a lack of experience, which you cannot fast forward,” Mullin said. “Experience is something you go through and when you go through it, there’s going to be some painful nights. I keep telling them that (experience) is going to make us better. It’s not going to happen right away.”
Chaminade fell to UNLV, 93-73, Tuesday.