December 29, 2010

Men's Basketball Travels To George Washington On New Year's Eve

Complete Release in PDF Format

GAME DAY QUICK FACTS:
The Teams: Holy Cross (1-10, 0-0 PL) vs. George Washington (5-6, 0-0 A-10)
Date: December 31, 2010
Time: 3:00 p.m.
Place: Charles E. Smith Center (4,338), Washington, D.C.
Live Video Streaming: George Washington All-Access
Holy Cross Radio: Bob Fouracre, play-by-play; Click Here to Listen
George Washington Radio: WFED 1500 AM, Washington, D.C.; WWFD 820 AM, Frederick, Md.
Unofficial Live Statistics: Gametracker
Series Record: George Washington leads, 3-0
Last Meeting: George Washington 70, Holy Cross 68 (December 28, 2009; 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 GEORGE WASHINGTON: This will be just the fourth meeting between the Crusaders and the Colonials on the hardwood, with George Washington leading the all-time series 3-0. The first two games between the schools were played in Washington, D.C., with the Colonials winning 76-68 on Jan. 20, 1983, and 86-56 on Nov. 22, 1996. Last season, George Washington posted a 70-68 victory at the Hart Center on Dec. 28, 2009.

SERIES QUICK FACTS:
Overall: George Washington leads, 3-0
In Washington: George Washington leads, 2-0
At the Smith Center: George Washington leads, 2-0
Milan Brown vs. George Washington: 0-2
Karl Hobbs vs. Holy Cross: 1-0
Current Win Streak: George Washington, three games

HOLY CROSS TRAVELS TO GEORGE WASHINGTON ON FRIDAY: After falling St. Joseph's 65-54 on Tuesday night, the Crusaders hit the road once again for a 3:00 p.m. contest at George Washington on Friday, Dec. 31. Holy Cross will then stay on the road for a game at Sacred Heart on Sunday, Jan. 2, at 2:00 p.m. The Crusaders return home again on Wednesday, Jan. 5, when they play their final non-conference game of the season against Yale 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 12-11 against Atlantic 10 foes since the beginning of the 1999-2000 season, even though it has lost seven in a row. 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 127-115 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, 36-20 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).

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 11 games played so far this season, he has averaged 11.0 points and 7.8 rebounds per contest, while hitting 46.5 percent (47 of 101) of his shots from the floor. During the Hofstra game, Keister led the team with 12 points and eight rebounds. Previously at Marist, he totaled 16 points and seven boards. Keister also played well against Fairfield, posting his 22nd career double-double with 16 points and seven 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 740 points and 597 rebounds, while making 51.2 percent (296 of 578) of his field goal attempts and posting 22 double-doubles.

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 11 games played, he has averaged 7.3 points and 5.5 rebounds per contest. During the St. Joseph's game, Cavataio led the team with 12 points and eight rebounds, while hitting six of 11 shots from the field. Previously at Massachusetts, he filled up the stat line with 13 points, six rebounds, three assists, two blocks and two steals. Earlier in the season, Cavataio 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 sat out the 2008-2009 season after transferring to Holy Cross from St. John's, where he totaled 23 points and 20 rebounds during his only year with the Red Storm. During his two year career at Holy Cross, he has totaled 429 points, 229 rebounds and 88 assists.

HOLY CROSS FACES TOUGH SLATE: Even though Holy Cross is off to an 1-10 start this season, it has faced the second-toughest non-conference schedule of any school in the Patriot League. Through games of Dec. 28, the Crusaders' schedule was ranked as the 193rd-hardest in the nation by CBSSports.com. The only Patriot League school to play a tougher schedule is Bucknell at 126th. Holy Cross has played five teams ranked in the top 133 of the ratings percentage index, and its opponents have combined to go 66-55 this season for a .545 winning percentage.

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. Brown defeated Ron Hunter of IUPUI 30-29 in the first round of the tournament, then downed Rick Stansbury of Mississippi State 30-29 in the second round. Next, he will face Mark Phelps of Drake in the round of 16. Engelstad defeated Notre Dame's Martin Inglesby 30-28 in the first round, and will take on Rusty LaRue of Wake Forest in the second round.

ST. JOSEPH'S RECAP: St. Joseph's guard Justin Crosgile scored a career-high 19 points, to lead the Hawks to a 65-54 victory over Holy Cross at the Hart Center on Dec. 28, 2010. The Crusaders were led by Mike Cavataio with 12 points and eight rebounds. After Holy Cross opened the game with an early 5-1 lead, St. Joseph's went on a 9-0 to pull in front. A few minutes later, the Hawks used an 11-0 spurt to extend their lead to double figures (23-10) with 5:43 left in the half. The Crusaders did come back to close out the half with a 7-2 run, cutting the St. Joseph's advantage to 31-23 at the break. Holy Cross began the second half with a 5-2 spurt, closing the gap to five points (33-28) on a three-point field goal by Devin Brown. But the Hawks came back to score the next four points, and would later use a 7-0 run to build their lead back to double figures. St. Joseph's was up 62-45 with 3:37 remaining, before the Crusaders went on a 9-1 run to trim the lead to nine points (63-54). But Holy Cross would not score again, as the Hawks held on for an 11-point victory. Andrew Keister finished the game with eight points and nine rebounds, while Andrew Beinert added seven points and eight assists with no 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 11 games played this season, Beinert has averaged 6.8 points, 3.5 assists and 2.5 rebounds per contest, while hitting 44.2 percent (19 of 43) of his three-point field goal attempts. During the St. Joseph's game, he totaled seven points and eight assists with no turnovers. Previously at Marist, Beinert scored 10 points (all in the second half) and pulled down three rebounds. A few of his other top performances this season have been against Fairfield (19 points, three rebounds, three assists), 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 785 points, 256 assists, 208 rebounds and 88 steals, while hitting 42.2 percent (148 of 351) of his three-point field goal attempts.

TRADITION OF EXCELLENCE: This year marks the 92nd season of Holy Cross men's basketball. The Crusaders own an overall record of 1292-858 (.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.

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.

THE LAST MEETING WITH GEORGE WASHINGTON: Devin Brown scored a game-high 20 points and pulled down five rebounds, but it was not enough as Holy Cross fell to George Washington 70-68 at the Hart Center on Dec. 28, 2009. The Crusaders trailed by 18 points in the first half and were down by 14 at the break, before rallying to nearly come all the way back. The Colonials started the game on fire, jumping out to a 20-4 lead after the first eight minutes of play. George Washington eventually extended its advantage to 18 points (28-10 at the 7:42-mark), before taking a 36-22 lead into the locker room. The Colonials were still up 40-26 early in the second half, when the Crusaders scored six straight points to cut the lead to single digits. George Washington was able to build its lead back to 11 points (58-47) with 4:21 left to play, before Holy Cross went on a 13-4 spurt, including eight points from Adam May, making the score 62-60. The Colonials clung to a slim lead the rest of way, and were up 70-68 with 3.5 seconds to go after a three-pointer by Brown. Tony Taylor then missed a pair of free throws to give the Crusaders one last chance, but a 30-foot shot by Mike Cavataio at the buzzer was just off the mark. R.J. Evans finished the game with 16 points, seven rebounds and four assists, while Andrew Beinert added 13 points and three assists. George Washington was led by Damian Hollis with 19 points and five rebounds.

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 11 games played so far this year, he has averaged a team-best 13.1 points per contest while hitting 85.5 percent (47 of 55) of his free throws. During the 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), against the College of Charleston (14 points, two assists) and at Hofstra (10 points). 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. Over the course of his Holy Cross career, Brown has now totaled 704 points, 128 rebounds and 82 assists, while hitting 37.7 percent (95 of 252) of his three-point field goal attempts and 82.7 percent of his free throws (205 of 248).

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 REMAIN SOLID AT THE HART CENTER: Holy Cross currently owns an all-time record of 316-124 at the Hart Center, including an 0-4 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 103-32 at home since the beginning of the 2000-2001 season, including a 66-14 record against Patriot League foes.

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 1-10. 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 96-130 (.425).

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).

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 has sat out the last three contests 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.

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

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 COLONIALS: George Washington enters the game with an overall record of 5-6 on the season. The Colonials had won three straight games, before suffering a 79-44 loss at Alabama-Birmingham on Monday. Junior guard Tony Taylor leads the team with averages of 13.1 points and 5.1 assists per contest. Sophomore forward Dwayne Smith is also off to a solid start this season, averaging 9.3 points and 4.9 rebounds per game. George Washington is led by head coach Karl Hobbs, who owns an overall record of 154-121 during his 10 seasons. Prior to his time with the Colonials, Hobbs served as an assistant coach at Connecticut and Boston University.

DRIBBLES: Sophomore forward Eric Obeysekere (Orinda, Calif.) had career highs of nine points and 17 rebounds during the 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 3.8 points, 5.2 rebounds and 0.9 blocks per game this season ... 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 then had seven points and a career-high six boards against St. Joseph's, and is now averaging 4.2 points and 2.8 rebounds per game ... Sophomore guard Jordan Stevens (Gansevoort, N.Y.) scored a career-high 11 points during the Hofstra game. He previously had nine points and a career-high three assists during the win at Marist, and is averaging 4.6 points per game on the year ... 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 ... 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 0-4 so far this season when wearing its white uniforms, while going 1-6 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.