WORCESTER, Mass. – Sophomore guard Mike Cavataio (Forest Hills, N.Y.) scored a career-high 19 points and pulled down eight rebounds, to lead the Holy Cross men’s basketball team to a 68-56 victory over Marist at the Hart Center. Cavataio hit five of nine shots from the field and all eight of his attempts at the free throw line in the game. The win marked the first victory in the collegiate head coaching career of Holy Cross’ Sean Kearney. The Crusaders improve to 1-6 on the season with the win, while the Red Foxes fall to 0-4 overall.
The Crusaders started the game hot, hitting six of their first seven shots from the field as they jumped out to an early 14-1 lead after the first five minutes of play. Marist would close the gap to eight points on two occasions, and was down by 10 (28-18) with three minutes remaining in the opening half. Holy Cross then went on an 8-0 run, including four points by Cavataio, to take a 36-18 advantage into the locker room.
Early in the second half, the Crusaders extended their lead to 20 points (40-20) with 17 minutes left to play. Holy Cross would maintain a comfortable lead for the next several minutes, and was still up 55-36 with just under seven minutes remaining on the clock. The Red Foxes then went on a 9-1 run to make things interesting, and eventually pulled to within eight points (64-56) with 1:57 left to play. But the Crusaders turned up the pressure on defense and did not allow Marist to score again, eventually posting a 12-point victory.
Junior forward Andrew Keister (Galloway, N.J.) posted a double-double for Holy Cross with 13 points and 10 rebounds, while junior guard Andrew Beinert (Floral Park, N.Y.) added eight points, five assists and four rebounds. As a team, Holy Cross shot 57.9 percent from the field (22 of 38) and 87.0 percent at the free throw line (20 of 23).
The Red Foxes were led by Candon Rusin and Daye Kaba with 12 points each.
Holy Cross returns to action on Wednesday, Dec. 2, when it travels to Brown for a 7:30 p.m. game.