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La Salle Readies For Sharp-Shooting Spiders

By Matt Leon

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – La Salle will play it's first Atlantic 10 home game of the season on Saturday afternoon, hosting Richmond at Gola Arena.

The Explorers opened conference play on the road on Wednesday night, losing at Charlotte, 74-65.

"We really didn't do a lot well in the first half," La Salle head coach Dr. John Giannini tells KYW Newsradio. "We didn't match their intensity and we had a hard time shooting the ball.  And I thought it affected our defense, which is a big disappointment.  They just really outplayed us in the first half.  But we came out extremely hard in the second half and we were competitive."

Listen to Matt Leon's interview with Dr. John Giannini:

Dr. John Giannini Interview

La Salle shot just 22% from the field in the first half against Charlotte, 33% for the game.

Richmond will come to town with an 11-5 record.  They opened conference play Wednesday with a home win over Rhode Island.  Giannini says they present a host of challenges.

"They shoot it really well," Giannini says.  "They have the #1 three point shooter in the country, (senior guard) Darien Brothers, shooting (54%) on threes.  They run the Princeton offense.  They're veteran, so they're going to execute.  It's hard to pressure them because they are very comfortable in their system and they're skilled guards."

It is all conference action for the Explorers from here on out, and Giannini says that means every game will be a challenge.

"Pretty much everyone in the A-10 is going to be a good team," Giannini says.  "It's a very special league this year and if somehow you can get yourself in the top half, you're going to have a chance at the post-season.  But that's harder done than said, and we have another hard game this weekend with Richmond."

La Salle and Richmond will tip-off at 2:00pm on Saturday afternoon.

You can follow Matt on Twitter @mattleonkyw.

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