Holy Cross To Play At Massachusetts On Saturday

Phil Beans

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The Teams: Holy Cross (0-4, 0-0 PL) vs. Massachusetts (5-0, 0-0 A-10)
Date: November 27, 2010
Time: 3:00 p.m.
Place: Curry Hicks Cage (4,000), Amherst, Mass.
Live Video Streaming: www.UMassAthletics.com
Holy Cross Radio: Bob Fouracre, play-by-play; Click Here to Listen
UMass Radio Network: WRNX 100.9 FM, Holyoke, flagship; Josh Maurer, play-by-play; Tim Collins, color
Unofficial Live Statistics: Gametracker
Series Record: Holy Cross leads, 36-19
Last Meeting: Massachusetts 84, Holy Cross 63; December 5, 2009; Worcester, Mass.

Pos., No., Name, Ht., Wt., Cl.
F, 5, Mike Cavataio, 6-4, 190, Jr. 
F, 44, Phil Beans, 6-9, 233, So.  
C, 34, Andrew Keister, 6-9, 235, Sr.   
G, 10, R.J. Evans, 6-3, 200, Jr.   
G, 22, Andrew Beinert, 6-4, 185, Sr.

THE SERIES WITH MASSACHUSETTS: This will be 56th meeting between the Crusaders and the Minutemen on the hardwood, with Holy Cross leading the all-time series 36-19. UMass has won the last two meetings (84-63 at the DCU Center on Dec. 5, 2009, and 73-59 at the Mullins Center on Dec. 10, 2008), but prior to that the Crusaders posted two straight victories (67-56 at the Mullins Center on Dec. 4, 2001, and 78-65 at the DCU Center on Nov. 25, 2000). Previously, UMass won four straight games in the series from 1991-1993. The schools first met on Jan. 8, 1908, with Holy Cross winning 51-4 in Worcester.

Overall: Holy Cross leads, 36-19
In Amherst: Holy Cross leads, 12-7
At Curry Hicks Cage: Holy Cross leads, 9-5
Milan Brown vs. Massachusetts: 0-0
Derek Kellogg vs. Holy Cross: 2-0
Current Win Streak: Massachusetts, two games
In Overtime: Tied, 1-1

HOLY CROSS CONTINUES ROAD TRIP AT UMASS: The Crusaders will play the fourth game of a five-game road trip when they head to Massachusetts for a 3:00 p.m. contest on Saturday, Nov. 27. Holy Cross is then off until the following Saturday, Dec. 4, when it travels to Wake Forest at 1:00 p.m. The next home game for the Crusaders comes on Tuesday, Dec. 7, when they play host to Stony Brook at 7:00 p.m.

HOLY CROSS AGAINST THE ATLANTIC 10: The Crusaders have enjoyed a decent amount of success against schools from the Atlantic 10 Conference over the last 11 years. Holy Cross stands 12-10 against Atlantic 10 foes since the beginning of the 1999-2000 season, even though they were 0-4 a year ago. From 1999-2005, the Crusaders won eight straight against Atlantic 10 opponents, but that streak was snapped with a 68-60 loss at St. Joseph's in the 2005 National Invitation Tournament. The Crusaders own an all-time record of 127-114 against the 14 schools which are currently members of the Atlantic 10 (0-1 vs. Charlotte, 1-3 against Dayton, 3-5 vs. Duquesne, 39-41 against Fordham, 0-3 vs. George Washington, 6-16 against La Salle, 36-19 vs. Massachusetts, 26-13 against Rhode Island, 3-2 vs. St. Bonaventure, 2-5 against St. Joseph's, 2-3 vs. St. Louis, 6-3 against Temple and 3-0 vs. Xavier).

EVANS KEEPS ON SCORING: Junior guard R.J. Evans (Salem, Conn.) is once again among the top players in the Patriot League during the 2010-2011 season. In four games played so far this season, he is averaging 11.3 points, 3.5 rebounds and 2.0 assists per contest, while hitting 51.4 percent (19 of 37) of his field goal attempts. Evans recorded 16 points, five assists, three steals and two rebounds against the College of Charleston, then scored 13 points at Harvard and had 12 points and seven rebounds at Boston College. In 28 games played last year, he averaged a team-best 13.4 points, 5.1 rebounds and 2.6 assists per contest. Evans finished last season ranked eighth in the Patriot League in scoring, 11th in assists and 14th in rebounding. A few of Evans' top performances in 2009-2010 came at Lafayette in the Patriot League semifinals (21 points, seven rebounds and three assists), at Fairfield (21 points and 10 rebounds), against Sacred Heart (20 points and five rebounds) and against Navy (20 points, four rebounds and four assists). The 2008-2009 Patriot League Rookie of the Year, Evans has now totaled 848 points, 323 rebounds, 132 assists and 77 steals over the course of his Holy Cross career.

KEISTER NAMED PRESEASON ALL-PATRIOT LEAGUE: Senior center Andrew Keister (Galloway, N.J.) was selected to the preseason All-Patriot League team, in voting by the conference's head coaches and sports information directors. Keister was joined on the preseason all-conference team by Lehigh sophomore guard C.J. McCollum, Lafayette senior forward Jared Mintz, American senior forward Vlad Moldoveanu, Bucknell sophomore forward Mike Muscala and Navy junior guard Jordan Sugars. In addition, McCollum was selected as the preseason Player of the Year.

BROWN PLAYS KEY MINUTES OFF THE BENCH: Junior guard Devin Brown (Baltimore, Md.) looks to return to his role as one of the Patriot League's top sixth men during the 2010-2011 campaign. In four games played so far this year, he has averaged a team-best 12.3 points per contest while hitting 41.2 percent (7 of 17) of his three-point field goals and 82.4 percent (14 of 17) of his free throws. Brown recorded 16 points and two steals at New Hampshire, after posting 14 points and two assists against the College of Charleston. In 30 games played last year, he averaged 12.5 points per contest, while scoring in double-figures 16 times. Brown also hit 44.8 percent (64 of 143) of his three-point field goal attempts and 77.3 percent (85 of 110) of his free throws last season. He finished the 2009-2010 campaign ranked third in the Patriot League in three-point field goal percentage, eighth in free throw percentage and 11th in scoring. Some of Brown's top games last season came against Bucknell (career-high 29 points), at Navy (23 points, five of eight shooting from three-point range), at North Carolina State (21 points, five rebounds and three assists) and against George Washington (20 points and five rebounds). Over the course of his Holy Cross career, Brown has now totaled 609 points, 119 rebounds and 71 assists, while hitting 39.7 percent (83 of 209) of his three-point field goal attempts and 81.9 percent of his free throws (172 of 210).

KEISTER LOOKS TO CONTINUE DOMINATING IN THE LOW POST: Senior center Andrew Keister has been one of the top low post players in the Patriot League over the last two seasons, and has twice been selected All-Patriot League. Keister earned first team All-Patriot League in 2008-2009, then was named second team all-conference in 2009-2010. In four games played so far this season, he has averaged 8.8 points and 6.5 rebounds per contest. Keister posted his 20th career double-double with 15 points and 10 rebounds against the College of Charleston, then had 10 points and seven rebounds at both Boston College and New Hampshire. In 31 games played last season, he averaged 10.2 points and 8.9 rebounds per contest, while hitting 51.6 percent (130 of 252) of his shots from the floor and posting 12 double-doubles. Keister led the Patriot League in rebounding a year ago, while ranking third in field goal percentage and 19th in scoring. Some of Keister's top games in 2009-2010 came at Navy (22 points, 14 rebounds and four assists), against Harvard (22 points and eight rebounds), at Rhode Island (21 points and 11 rebounds) and against Army (17 points and 18 rebounds). Over the course of his collegiate career, Keister has now totaled 644 points and 537 rebounds, while making 52.1 percent (263 of 505) of his field goal attempts.

BOSTON COLLEGE RECAP: Cory Raji scored 15 points and Danny Rubin recorded 14 points as Boston College posted a 69-54 victory over Holy Cross at Conte Forum on Nov. 22, 2010. R.J. Evans led the Crusaders with 12 points and seven rebounds. After the Eagles took an early 13-6 lead with 13:21 left in the first half, Holy Cross went on a 9-0 run  to take a 15-13 advantage with 9:07 remaining. The Eagles then scored six straight points, before Andrew Beinert hit a three-pointer to cut the Boston College lead to 19-18. With the Eagles later up 25-20, Devin Brown and Beinert each hit shots to make it a 25-24 contest with 3:50 left before the break. The Eagles then tallied six of the next eight points to end the half with a 31-26 lead. With Holy Cross trailing 34-27 early in the second half, Beinert hit two straight three-pointers to cut the lead to 34-33. A few minutes later the Eagles led 36-35, when they went on a 12-0 run to extend their advantage to 48-35 with 13:10 left. The Crusaders were later down by 15 (55-40), when they tallied seven consecutive points to cut the deficit to eight (55-47) with 5:53 remaining in the game. But the Eagles then went on a 12-0 run to put the game away, eventually claiming a 15-point victory. Beinert and Brown each scored 11 points for the Crusaders, while Andrew Keister added 10 points and seven rebounds.

BEINERT LEADS HOLY CROSS FROM THE POINT: Senior guard Andrew Beinert (Floral Park, N.Y.) has been one of the Crusaders' top players in the backcourt over the last three seasons. During Monday's game at Boston College, he totaled 11 points, three rebounds and two assists, while hitting three of five attempts from three-point range. In 31 games played last year, Beinert averaged 10.5 points, 3.5 assists, 2.2 rebounds and 1.1 steals per contest, while hitting 61 of 141 (43.3 percent) three-point field goal attempts. He finished the season ranked fourth in the Patriot League in assists and three-point field goal percentage, while standing 17th in scoring. Some of Beinert's top games in 2009-2010 came at Lehigh (career-high 21 points and three steals, while hitting five of six shots from three-point range), at Bucknell in the Patriot League quarterfinals (19 points and three assists) and against Loyola (17 points, six rebounds, six assists and three steals). During his career as a Crusader, Beinert has now totaled 724 points, 224 assists, 191 rebounds and 82 steals, while hitting 41.6 percent (133 of 320) of his three-point field goal attempts.

BROWN ENTERS FIRST SEASON WITH THE CRUSADERS: Milan Brown is in his first season as the head men's basketball coach at Holy Cross in 2010-2011, with a record of 0-4. The 16th head coach in the history of the program, he joined the Crusaders after spending the previous seven seasons as head coach at Mount St. Mary's. During the last three years at Mount St. Mary's, Brown led the Mountaineers to three straight winning seasons and a pair of postseason appearances. His teams posted a 54-44 record (.551) during those three years, including a 35-19 mark (.648) in Northeast Conference play. During the 2007-2008 campaign, Brown led Mount St. Mary's to the first NCAA Division I Tournament victory in school history, with a 69-60 win over Coppin State in the opening round. Brown's career collegiate head coaching record stands at 95-124 (.434).

CRUSADERS REMAIN SOLID AT THE HART CENTER: Holy Cross currently owns an all-time record of 316-121 at the Hart Center, including an 0-1 mark so far this year. The Crusaders posted their 300th win in the building against Sacred Heart on Nov. 14, 2008. Holy Cross had a 23-game winning streak at the Hart Center from Feb. 15, 2006-Jan. 2, 2008, which was the longest streak in the history of the building and the sixth-longest home court winning streak in the nation at the time. In 2006-2007 the Crusaders posted a perfect 14-0 mark at the Hart Center, setting a school record for the most home victories since they moved into the building. During the Hart Center's history, Holy Cross has posted a winning record at home in 30 out of 35 seasons, while recording double-figure home victories 16 times. The Crusaders stand 103-29 at home since the beginning of the 2000-2001 season, including a 66-14 record against Patriot League foes.

THE LAST MEETING WITH UMASS: Massachusetts' Ricky Harris totaled 19 points, six assists and three rebounds, to lead the Minutemen to an 84-63 victory over Holy Cross at the DCU Center on Dec. 5, 2009. The Crusaders were led by R.J. Evans with 18 points, four rebounds and three assists. The Minutemen held a 10-7 lead after the first five minutes of the opening half, before an 11-0 run to put Massachusetts ahead 21-7. The Crusaders answered by scoring nine straight points to make the score 23-18, but that was as close as Holy Cross would get. The Minutemen came back by scoring 12 of the next 16 points, and eventually took a 49-34 advantage into the locker room. The Crusaders came out strong in the early minutes of the second half, using a 16-8 spurt to cut the margin to seven points (57-50) with just under 13 minutes to play. But UMass then scored 11 straight points, and eventually increased its lead to 74-54 with five minutes left in the game. The Minutemen would lead by at least 20 points the rest of the way, finishing with a 84-63 victory. Andrew Keister posted 12 points and four rebounds for Holy Cross, while Andrew Beinert added 12 points and three steals. Eric Meister totaled nine points and a team-high seven rebounds for the Crusaders. Anthony Gurley had 18 points and five rebounds for UMass, with Freddie Riley adding 12 points and five boards.

CAVATAIO SHINES ON THE WING: Junior guard Mike Cavataio (Forest Hills, N.Y.) is once again among Holy Cross' top players during the 2010-2011 campaign. In four games played, he has averaged 8.5 points and 5.0 rebounds per contest. Cavataio totaled 16 points and seven rebounds against the College of Charleston, then recorded 11 points, seven rebounds and two steals at New Hampshire. In 31 games played last season, he averaged 11.3 points, 5.5 rebounds and 2.2 assists per contest. Cavataio also shot 47.1 percent (131 of 278) from the field and 82.1 percent (78 of 95) on the free throw line in 2009-2010. He finished last year ranked fourth in the Patriot League in free throw percentage, eighth in field goal percentage, ninth in rebounding and 14th in scoring. A few of Cavataio's top performances in 2009-2010 came at Brown (21 points and six rebounds), at Bucknell in the Patriot League quarterfinals (20 points, four rebounds, two assists), against Colgate (19 points, five assists, four rebounds) and against Marist (19 points, eight rebounds). Cavataio previously sat out the 2008-2009 season after transferring to Holy Cross from St. John's University, where he totaled 23 points and 20 rebounds during his only year with the Red Storm.

CRUSADERS PICKED FOURTH IN PRESEASON POLL: In the 2010-2011 Patriot League preseason poll, Holy Cross was picked to finish in fourth place in voting by the conference's head coaches and sports information directors. The Crusaders received 70 total points in the conference preseason poll, along with two first-place votes. American placed first in the poll with 79 total points and seven first-place votes, followed by Bucknell in second (76 points, three first-place votes) and Lafayette in third (73 points, two first-place votes). The preseason rankings were rounded out by Lehigh (fifth, 69 points, two first-place votes), Navy (sixth, 35 points), Colgate (seventh, 31 points) and Army (eighth, 15 points).

CRUSADERS LOOKING FOR SIXTH PATRIOT LEAGUE REGULAR SEASON TITLE: During the 2010-2011 campaign, Holy Cross will attempt to win the Patriot League regular season title for the sixth time in school history. The last championship for the Crusaders came in 2007, when they tied for first place in the conference with Bucknell, as both teams posted 13-1 records in league play. Prior to that, Holy Cross won outright Patriot League regular season titles in 2001, 2003 and 2005, while sharing the regular season championship in 1994. The Crusaders are the only team in league history to win more than two outright titles, while their five total championships are tied for the most in conference history with Navy (one outright, four shared) and Bucknell (two outright, three shared).

CRUSADERS KNOCK DOWN FREE THROWS: Holy Cross was a good free throw shooting team during the 2009-2010 season, making 70.1 percent (464 of 662) of its foul shots last year. Guard Mike Cavataio led the team by hitting 82.1 percent (78 of 95) of his free throws, while guard Devin Brown made 77.3 percent (85 of 110) of his attempts at the charity stripe and guard Andrew Beinert knocked down 77.1 percent (64 of 83) of his foul shots. Even though he had fewer attempts, guard Dee Goens (Alpharetta, Ga.) was also an excellent free throw shooter, hitting hit 37 of 47 foul shots (78.7 percent). All told, 10 of the 12 players on the Holy Cross roster who attempted a free throw last year hit over 70.0 percent.

HOLY CROSS HAS GOOD SUCCESS ON THE BOARDS: The Crusaders look to once again be a strong rebounding team this year, after outrebounding the College of Charleston 33-25 in their season opener. During the 2009-2010 campaign, Holy Cross averaged 36.6 boards per contest and outrebounded its opponents by an average margin of 4.1 rebounds per game in 2009-2010. Holy Cross was even more impressive on the boards during conference regular season play last season, posting a +4.7 rebound margin against Patriot League foes. The Crusaders' top game overall on the boards last year came at St. Joseph's, when they pulled down a season-best 50 rebounds. Center Andrew Keister led the team with an average of 8.9 rebounds per game, while forward Eric Meister stood second with 5.6 boards per contest. Guard Mike Cavataio pulled down 5.5 rebounds per contest and guard R.J. Evans has chipped in with 5.1 boards per game. Entering 2010-2011, the Crusaders had posted a positive rebounding margin in 11 straight seasons, including nine years in which they outrebounded the opposition by at least four boards per game.

TRADITION OF EXCELLENCE: This year marks the 92nd season of Holy Cross men's basketball. The Crusaders own an overall record of 1291-853 (.602), while making 24 postseason tournament appearances — 12 trips to the NCAA Tournament and 12 to the National Invitation Tournament. In the history of collegiate basketball, Holy Cross is one of only 16 schools to have won the NCAA Tournament (1946-1947) as well as the National Invitational Tournament (1953-1954). Throughout its history, Holy Cross has had six first team All-America selections, sent 10 players to the National Basketball Association, had four players inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame, had 23 players drafted by professional teams, had three players go on to coach professionally, and had 15 players who have coached in college.

CRUSADERS HAVE FIVE PATRIOT LEAGUE TOURNAMENT CROWNS: Four years ago, the Crusaders captured their fifth Patriot League Tournament with their 74-66 victory over Bucknell on March 9, 2007. Holy Cross' previous tournament titles came in 2003 (72-64 over American), 2002 (58-54 at American), 2001 (68-64 over Navy in overtime) and 1993 (98-73 at Bucknell). The Crusaders' five conference tournament championships are the most in Patriot League history, with Navy having the second most (three in 1994, 1997 and 1998). Holy Cross has also appeared in the championship game in seven times in the last nine years. Overall, the Crusaders have made a conference-record 10 appearances in the Patriot League championship game.

SHOTS FROM THE HEART: Holy Cross head coach Milan Brown and assistant coach Dan Engelstad are taking part in Shots from the Heart, a project created by CollegeInsider.com to help raise awareness for the growing problem of heart disease. Brown and Engelstad will compete against other college basketball coaches from around the nation in a free throw shooting tournament, which will benefit the American Heart Association. The first round of the tournament will take place from Nov. 15-30 with winners advancing to the next round, which will be competed the following month. The event will conclude with a free throw final contested at the 2011 Final Four in Houston. Brown will face Ron Hunter of IUPUI in the first round, while Engelstad will take on Notre Dame's Martin Inglesby.

HOLY CROSS ON THE RADIO: All of the Crusaders' basketball contests during the 2010-2011 season will be carried live over the internet. The games will be streamed by Stretch Internet free of charge, and can be heard by clicking here. Holy Cross Hall of Famer Bob Fouracre will be in his 24th season calling the play-by-play for Crusader basketball on the radio. In addition, Jeremy Lechan and Dick Lutsk are in their seventh year on the Holy Cross broadcast crew, and will handle either play-by-play or color commentary for selected games. In addition, the Holy Cross student station, WCHC 88.1 FM, will carry a number of games this year.

CRUSADERS ON TELEVISION: Holy Cross will have at least seven games shown on live television during the 2010-2011 season. The Crusaders had nine television appearances last year, while appearing on television 10 times in 2008-2009, eight times in 2007-2008, 13 times in 2006-2007, 10 times in 2005-2006 and 10 times in 2004-2005. Here is a look at Holy Cross' television schedule for the 2010-2011 season:

Dec. 22 at Hofstra: Verizon FiOS1
Dec. 28 vs. St. Joseph's: WCTR-TV3
Jan. 16 at Bucknell: CBS College Sports
Jan. 27 vs. Colgate: CBS College Sports
Jan. 29 at Lehigh: Service Electric Cable
Feb. 5 at Lafayette: Lafayette Sports Network
Feb. 9 vs. Army: WCTR-TV3

CRUSADER VISION: Live video streaming of three home non-conference games during the 2010-2011 season will be available over the internet through Crusader Vision. The contests against the College of Charleston, Stony Brook and St. Joseph's will be shown. The package, done in association with Stretch Internet, is available through individual game pay-per-view. For details on how to view games through Crusader Vision, click here.

PATRIOT LEAGUE ALL-ACCESS: Live video streaming of all Patriot League regular season games during the 2010-2011 season will be available over the internet through Patriot League All-Access. The package, done in association with CBS College Sports Online, is available for a monthly subscription. For details on how to sign up for Patriot League All-Access, click here.

SCOUTING THE MINUTEMEN: Massachusetts enters the game with an overall record of 5-0 on the year. The Minutemen are coming off an 83-56 victory over American International, and also own wins over Texas Christian (67-48), New Mexico State (71-57), Sacred Heart (73-65) and Rider (77-67). Senior guard     Anthony Gurley leads the team with an average of 21.2 points per game, while hitting seven of 13 shots (53.8 percent) from three-point range. Sophomore guard Javorn Farrell has added 12.3 points and 4.0 rebounds per contest, while sophomore guard Freddie Riley is averaging 12.6 points and 2.6 rebounds per game. Massachusetts is led by Derek Kellogg, who stands 29-38 in his three seasons as head coach. Kellogg, who was previously an assistant coach at Memphis, Youngstown State and George Mason, is a 1995 UMass graduate who helped the Minutemen to four straight NCAA Tournament appearances from 1992-1995.

DRIBBLES: Freshman forward Dave Dudzinski (Elburn, Ill.) had a strong night off the bench at Harvard, scoring eight points and pulling down a team-high five rebounds in 24 minutes of action. He then added seven points and four boards at New Hampshire, and is now averaging 4.8 points and 3.0 rebounds per game ... Senior forward Josh Jones (Ocala, Fla.) earned his first career start in the season opener against the College of Charleston. He responded with a solid performance, totaling nine points and four rebounds while hitting three of four shots from the field ... The Crusaders have a 13-4 record in overtime contests since the beginning of the 1999-2000 season, including a 1-1 mark last year ...  Holy Cross stands 0-1 so far this season when wearing its white uniforms, while going 0-3 in its purple uniforms and 0-0 in its black uniforms.