By Martha Sullivan

The Wildcats may be No. 1 in the nation when the new polls come out tomorrow!

Villanova maintained Big 5 series dominance with an 88-57 victory over Saint Joseph’s yesterday at the Pavilion.

The Wildcats are 2-0 to start the Big 5 series in 2016, and have ripped off 16 straight wins in the series since 2012. After three straight outright titles in the Big 5 series, ‘Nova looks to be well on their way to clinching a fourth consecutive title assuming they handle their business against La Salle and Temple later on this month.

Six Cats were in double figures:

Leading the way was Kris Jenkins who shot 50 percent from the field on 14 attempts and 44.4 percent from the 3-point line on nine attempts from deep. Josh Hart added 16 points of his own while Darryl Reynolds (above) chipped in 13, and Jalen Brunson, Eric Paschall and Donte DiVincenzo added 11, 10 and 10 respectively.

The ‘Cats held the Hawks to a mark of just 33.9 percent from the field and 33.3 percent from the 3-point line. Lamarr Kimble led the way for St. Joe’s on Saturday afternoon with 15 points but did so on 14 shots. Shavar Newkirk was the only other Hawk to get into double figures as he scored 11 on 15 shots from the field.

The ‘Cats haven’t lost a Big 5 game since a 76-61 loss to Temple on December 5, 2012.

Villanova has the benefit of playing Temple at home on December 31 and while the next encounter against La Salle is at the Palestra on Tuesday, ‘Nova should be heavily favored to defeat the Explorers.


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