December 20, 2010

Crusaders Travel To Hofstra On Wednesday

Complete Release in PDF Format

GAME DAY QUICK FACTS:
The Teams: Holy Cross (1-8, 0-0 PL) vs. Hofstra (6-4, 1-0 CAA)
Date: December 22, 2010
Time: 7:00 p.m.
Place: Mack Sports Complex (5,045), Hempstead, N.Y.
Television: Verizon FiOS1 (tape delay)
Holy Cross Radio: Bob Fouracre, play-by-play; Click Here to Listen
Unofficial Live Statistics: www.GoHofstra.com
Series Record: Holy Cross leads, 5-1
Last Meeting: Holy Cross 61, Hofstra 47 (November 10, 2007; Worcester, Mass.)

PROBABLE HOLY CROSS STARTERS:
Pos., No., Name, Ht., Wt., Cl.
F, 5, Mike Cavataio, 6-4, 190, Jr.
F, 35, Eric Obeysekere, 6-8, 209, So.
C, 34, Andrew Keister, 6-9, 235, Sr.   
G, 2, Devin Brown, 6-1, 190, Jr.
G, 22, Andrew Beinert, 6-4, 185, Sr.

THE SERIES WITH HOFSTRA: This will be just the seventh meeting between the Crusaders and the Pride on the hardwood, with Holy Cross leading the all-time series 5-1. The Crusaders won the first four contests between the schools, including a pair of victories at the Hart Center (100-88 on Feb. 4, 1978; 97-84 on Dec. 29, 1979), a win at Nassau Coliseum (64-62 on Jan. 22, 1979) and a victory at the Hofstra Physical Fitness Center (73-63 on Feb. 25, 1981). The Pride then posted a 65-64 at the Mack Sports Complex on Feb. 17, 2007 (as part of the ESPNU BracketBusters), before Holy Cross won the last meeting 61-47 at the Hart Center on Nov. 10, 2007.

SERIES QUICK FACTS:
Overall: Holy Cross leads, 5-1
In Hempstead: Tied, 1-1
At the Mack Sports Complex: Hofstra leads, 1-0
Milan Brown vs. Hofstra: 0-0
Mo Cassara vs. Holy Cross: 0-0
Current Win Streak: Holy Cross, one game

HOLY CROSS STAYS ON THE ROAD FOR GAME AT HOFSTRA: Following a 75-57 victory at Marist on Sunday, the Crusaders will remain on the road when they travel to Hofstra on Wednesday, Dec. 22, at 7:00 p.m. Holy Cross returns home on Tuesday, Dec. 28, when it plays host to St. Joseph's at 7:00 p.m. The Crusaders then hit the road once again, for contests at George Washington on Friday, Dec. 31, and at Sacred Heart on Sunday, Jan. 2.

CRUSADERS AGAINST THE CAA: Holy Cross owns an all-time record of 25-8 against the 12 schools which currently compete in the Colonial Athletic Association. The Crusaders stand 1-0 against Delaware, 0-2 vs. George Mason, 1-0 against Georgia State, 5-1 vs. Hofstra, 13-5 against Northeastern and 5-0 vs. William & Mary.

KEISTER CONTINUES TO DOMINATE IN THE LOW POST: Senior center Andrew Keister (Galloway, N.J.) 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 nine games played so far this season, he has averaged 11.2 points and 7.7 rebounds per contest, while hitting 50.0 percent (40 of 80) of his shots from the floor. During Sunday's victory at Marist, Keister led the team with 16 points and seven rebounds. Previously against Fairfield, he posted his 22nd career double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds. Keister also played well against Stony Brook, scoring eight points and pulling down a team-high 10 rebounds. Some of his other top performances this season have come at Massachusetts (16 points, 11 rebounds), at Wake Forest (16 points, five rebounds), against the College of Charleston (15 points, 10 rebounds), at Boston College (10 points, seven rebounds) and at New Hampshire (10 points, seven rebounds). In 31 games played last season, Keister 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. He 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 710 points and 580 rebounds, while making 51.9 percent (289 of 557) of his field goal attempts and posting 22 double-doubles.

HOLY CROSS FACES TOUGH SLATE: Even though Holy Cross is off to an 1-8 start this season, it has faced the toughest non-conference schedule of any school in the Patriot League. Through games of Dec. 19, the Crusaders' schedule was ranked as the 130th-hardest in the nation by CBSSports.com. The only other Patriot League school to play a schedule that comes close is Bucknell at 131st. Holy Cross has played three teams ranked in the top 100 of the ratings percentage index, and its opponents have combined to go 53-38 this season for a .582 winning percentage.

BROWN PLAYS KEY MINUTES FOR THE CRUSADERS: Junior guard Devin Brown (Baltimore, Md.) continues to be one of Holy Cross' top players during the 2010-2011 campaign. In nine games played so far this year, he has averaged a team-best 13.9 points per contest while hitting 87.5 percent (42 of 48) of his free throws. During Sunday's victory at Marist, Brown totaled 13 points and four assists, while hitting all eight of his free throw attempts. Previously against Stony Brook, he scored a team-high 21 points on seven of 11 shooting from the field. Brown also played well at Wake Forest, when he tied for the team lead in scoring with 16 points. Some of his other top performances this season have come at Massachusetts (18 points, four assists), at New Hampshire (16 points, two steals) and against the College of Charleston (14 points, two assists). In 30 games played last year, Brown averaged 12.5 points per contest, while scoring in double-figures 16 times. He 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. Brown 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. A few 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 685 points, 126 rebounds and 81 assists, while hitting 38.1 percent (91 of 239) of his three-point field goal attempts and 83.0 percent of his free throws (200 of 241).

MARIST RECAP: Andrew Keister totaled 16 points and seven rebounds, to lead Holy Cross to a 75-57 victory over Marist at the McCann Center on Dec. 19, 2010. Devin Brown added 13 points and four assists for the Crusaders, while hitting all eight of his free throw attempts. The game was close early on, and the Crusaders held a 13-12 advantage after the first nine minutes of play. Holy Cross then went on a 10-0 run, including five points from Keister, to extend its lead to 11 points (23-12) with seven minutes remaining in the first half. Marist responded with a 9-0 spurt of its own, before a 9-0 run by the Crusaders later in the half made the score 34-22. Holy Cross eventually took a 35-27 advantage into the locker room. After Marist's Jay Bowie hit a three-pointer early in the second half to make the score 35-30, Holy Cross went on a 10-4 run to build its advantage back to double figures (45-34). The Crusaders' lead would stay between eight and 12 points for the next several minutes, before Andrew Beinert scored five straight points to make the score 58-43 with eight minutes left to play. Holy Cross eventually extended its lead to 24 points (75-51) late in the game, before finally claiming an 18-point victory. Beinert scored all 10 of his points in the second half and added three rebounds, while Eric Obeysekere had career-highs of nine points and 17 rebounds. Jordan Stevens finished with career-highs of nine points and three assists, and Josh Jones tied his career-high with nine points. Marist was led by R.J. Hall with 14 points and three assists. As a team, Holy Cross held a 45-33 rebounding advantage, while committing just seven turnovers.

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 four seasons. In nine games played this season, Beinert has averaged 7.0 points, 3.1 assists and 2.3 rebounds per contest, while hitting 47.2 percent (17 of 36) of his three-point field goal attempts. During Sunday's victory at Marist, he scored 10 points (all in the second half) and pulled down three rebounds. Previously against Fairfield, Beinert led the team with 19 points, three rebounds and three assists, while hitting five of seven attempts from three-point range. A few of his other top performances this season have been at Wake Forest (eight points, seven assists) and at Boston College (11 points, three rebounds, two assists). 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 last 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 773 points, 245 assists, 202 rebounds and 84 steals, while hitting 42.4 percent (146 of 344) of his three-point field goal attempts.

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 nine games played, Cavataio has averaged 6.8 points and 5.0 rebounds per contest. During the Massachusetts game, he filled up the stat line with 13 points, six rebounds, three assists, two blocks and two steals. Cavataio previously had 16 points and seven rebounds against the College of Charleston, while recording 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.

THE LAST MEETING WITH HOFSTRA: Pat Doherty scored a team-high 18 points, to lead Holy Cross to a 61-47 victory over Hofstra at the Hart Center on Nov. 10, 2007. Doherty made nine of 10 free throw attempts on the night, while also dishing out four assists. Doherty scored the first five points of the game with a three-pointer and a jump shot, but Hofstra came back with a 9-0 run to go up by four. The Pride were still up by one point (19-18) with 6:56 left in the first half, before the Crusaders went on a 9-0 run to take the lead for good. Hofstra came as close as three points late in the half, before Adam May scored six straight points to give Holy Cross a 33-24 lead at the break. The Crusaders continued to play outstanding defense early in the second half, and built their lead up to 17 points (44-27) with 12:48 left in the game. At one point, Hofstra went 16:23 without making a field goal. The Pride was able to get no closer than 10 points down the stretch, as Holy Cross cruised to the victory. The Crusaders held a 45-34 rebounding advantage on the night, while forcing 14 turnovers and holding Hofstra to just 26.5 percent shooting from the field. Alex Vander Baan finished the game with 10 points, 15 rebounds, three assists and three blocked shots, while Kyle Cruze added 10 points, two rebounds and two steals. The Pride was led by Antoine Agudio with 28 points on nine-of-23 shooting from the floor.

EVANS KEEPS ON SCORING: Junior guard R.J. Evans (Salem, Conn.) is once again among the top players in the Patriot League this season, but sat out the contest at Marist due to injury. In eight games played so far this season, he is averaging 9.5 points, 4.1 rebounds and 1.6 assists per contest, while hitting 46.3 percent (31 of 67) of his field goal attempts. During the Stony Brook game, Evans totaled 11 points, five rebounds and two assists. Previously at Massachusetts, he finished with 11 points and three rebounds. Some of Evans' other top performances this year have been against the College of Charleston (16 points, five assists, three steals, two rebounds), at Harvard (13 points) and at Boston College (12 points, seven rebounds). 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 879 points, 342 rebounds, 137 assists and 81 steals over the course of his Holy Cross career.

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. In the first round of the tournament, Brown defeated Ron Hunter of IUPUI 30-29, while Engelstad downed Notre Dame's Martin Inglesby 30-28. Brown now moves on to face Rick Stansbury of Mississippi State in the second round, while Engelstad will take on Rusty LaRue of Wake Forest.

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 1-8. Brown earned his first victory with the Crusaders on Dec. 19, 2010, at Marist. The 16th head coach in the history of the program, he came to Holy Cross after spending the previous seven seasons as head coach at Mount St. Mary's. During his final 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 96-128 (.426).

TRADITION OF EXCELLENCE: This year marks the 92nd season of Holy Cross men's basketball. The Crusaders own an overall record of 1292-856 (.601), 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 REMAIN SOLID AT THE HART CENTER: Holy Cross currently owns an all-time record of 316-123 at the Hart Center, including an 0-3 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 103-31 at home since the beginning of the 2000-2001 season, including a 66-14 record against Patriot League foes.

KEISTER NAMED PRESEASON ALL-PATRIOT LEAGUE: Senior center Andrew Keister 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.

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).

HOLY CROSS IN THE NCAA STATISTICS: The Crusaders are currently ranked among the NCAA Division I leaders in three statistical categories, through games of Dec. 19. In addition, junior guard Devin Brown ranks 52nd in free throw percentage, senior center Andrew Keister is 124th in rebounding and senior guard Andrew Beinert ranks 174th in the nation in assist-to-turnover ratio. The rankings:

Category Rank Player / Team Avg.
Free Throw Percentage 52 Devin Brown 87.5
Fewest Personal Fouls 124 Holy Cross 18.6
Rebounding 124 Andrew Keister 7.7
Rebounding Margin 156 Holy Cross +1.7
Assist-Turnover Ratio 174 Andrew Beinert 1.6
Assists 192 Holy Cross 12.9


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).

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 PRIDE: Hofstra enters the game with an overall record of 6-4, and a 1-0 mark in the Colonial Athletic Association. The Pride have won five of their last six games, and are coming off a 71-58 victory over Manhattan. Senior guard Charles Jenkins leads the team with an average of 24.9 points per game, while hitting 60.3 percent (88 of 146) of his field goal attempts and 50.0 percent (22 of 44) of his three-pointers. Junior guard Mike Moore is also off to a solid start this year, averaging 13.8 points and 6.0 rebounds per game. Hofstra is led by head coach Mo Cassara, who owns an overall record of 6-4 in his first season with the Pride. Cassara's career record stands at 28-34, including two seasons at Clark University in Worcester.

DRIBBLES: Sophomore forward Eric Obeysekere (Orinda, Calif.) had career highs of nine points and 17 rebounds during Sunday's victory at Marist. The 17 rebounds were the most by any player in the Patriot League in a single game this season. Obeysekere is now averaging 3.3 points, 4.6 rebounds and 0.9 blocks per game this season ... Sophomore guard Jordan Stevens (Gansevoort, N.Y.) posted career-highs of nine points and three assists during the win at Marist ... 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 a career-high nine points and four rebounds while hitting three of four shots from the field. He then matched his career high with nine points at Marist ... Freshman forward Dave Dudzinski (Elburn, Ill.) had a strong game off the bench against Fairfield, totaling a career-high nine points and four rebounds in 20 minutes of action. He had eight points and a career-high five boards earlier in the year at Harvard, and is now averaging 4.3 points and 2.8 rebounds per game ...  Holy Cross' 0-8 start this year was the worst in school history. Previously, the Crusaders' worst start was 0-7 during the 1940-1941 season ... Holy Cross stands 0-3 so far this season when wearing its white uniforms, while going 1-5 in its purple uniforms ... 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.