January 2, 2013

Men's Basketball Opens The New Year Against Yale

Complete Release in PDF Format

GAME DAY QUICK FACTS:
The Teams: Holy Cross (7-6, 0-0 PL) vs. Yale (4-10, 0-0 Ivy)
Date: January 4, 2013
Time: 7:00 p.m.
Place: Hart Center (3,600), Worcester, Mass.
Live Video Streaming: Crusader Vision
Holy Cross Radio: Bob Fouracre, play-by-play; Click Here to Listen
Unofficial Live Statistics: Presto Sports Primetime
Series Record: Holy Cross leads, 35-31
Last Meeting: Yale 82, Holy Cross 67; January 3, 2012; New Haven, Conn.

PROBABLE HOLY CROSS STARTERS:
Pos., No., Name, Ht., Wt., Cl.
F, 13, Malcolm Miller, 6-6, 190, So.
F, 50, Dave Dudzinski, 6-9, 227, Jr.
C, 44, Phil Beans, 6-9, 233, Sr.
G, 3, Justin Burrell, 5-9, 165, So.
G, 32, Jordan Stevens, 6-5, 200, Sr.

CRUSADERS RETURN HOME TO FACE YALE: Holy Cross will play at home for the first time since Dec. 8 and only the fourth time this season, when it faces Yale at the Hart Center on Friday, Jan. 4, at 7:00 p.m. The Crusaders will then stay at home to close out non-conference play with a contest against Columbia on Tuesday, Jan. 8, at 7:00 p.m. Holy Cross is scheduled to open its Patriot League schedule at Lehigh on Saturday, Jan. 12, in a game which will be shown live on the CBS Sports Network at 2:00 p.m.

THE SERIES WITH YALE: This will be the 67th meeting between the Crusaders and the Bulldogs on the hardwood, with Holy Cross holding a 35-31 advantage in the all-time series. The Crusaders have won eight of the last 14 games between the schools, although Yale has come out victorious in each of the last three meetings. For games played in Worcester, Holy Cross holds a 14-7 advantage in the series, including an 8-3 mark at the Hart Center. Holy Cross and Yale first met on Feb. 10, 1903, with the Bulldogs posting a 26-10 victory in Worcester.

SERIES QUICK FACTS:
Overall: Holy Cross leads, 35-31
In Worcester: Holy Cross leads, 14-7
At the Hart Center: Holy Cross leads, 8-3
Milan Brown vs. Yale: 0-2
James Jones vs. Holy Cross: 4-4
Current Win Streak: Yale, three games
In Overtime: Holy Cross leads, 4-3

DUDZINSKI PLAYS BIG DOWN LOW: Junior forward Dave Dudzinski (Elburn, Ill.) is once again a key player for the Crusaders in the low post positions this year. In 13 games played, he has averaged a team-best 15.1 points, 7.2 rebounds and 1.1 blocks per contest, while connecting 49.3 percent (70 of 142) of his field goals and 84.5 percent (49 of 58) of his free throws. During the Boston College game, Dudzinski recorded 15 points, six rebounds and two blocked shots. Previously at Harvard, He led the team with 22 points, two assists, two blocks and two steals. Dudzinski also had a huge night at San Francisco, totaling a career-high 31 points, seven rebounds and two blocks. Some of his other top games this year have come against Morgan State (20 points, eight rebounds), New Hampshire (19 points, eight rebounds, three steals), Sacred Heart (19 points, five rebounds), Hartford (13 points, career-high 15 rebounds, three assists), St. John's (12 points, five rebounds), Providence (11 points, eight rebounds), Maine (10 points, nine rebounds) and Dartmouth (10 points, four rebounds). In 29 games played last season, Dudzinski averaged 9.4 points, 6.0 rebounds and 1.1 blocks, while making 48.7 percent (97 of 199) of his field goal attempts and 83.1 percent of his free throws (69 of 83). During the 2010-2011 campaign, he was named to the Patriot League All-Rookie team, after averaging 4.6 points and 2.8 rebounds in 27 games played, while hitting 54.8 percent (51 of 93) of his field goal attempts. Over the course of his collegiate career, Dudzinski has now totaled 592 points, 342 rebounds and 55 blocked shots, while connecting on 50.2 percent (218 of 434) of his field goals and 80.2 percent (134 of 167) of his free throws.

OBEYSEKERE STEPS UP ON FRONT LINE: Senior forward Eric Obeysekere (Orinda, Calif.) has developed into a solid presence for the Crusaders in the low post. After missing the first four games of the season due to injury, he has averaged 5.6 points, 6.3 rebounds and 0.8 blocks over the last nine contests. During the Boston College game, Obeysekere led the team with a career-high 17 points and six rebounds, while hitting seven of eight field goal attempts. Previously at Harvard, he posted six points and five rebounds. A few of Obeysekere's other top games this year have come against Providence (eight points, seven rebounds, two assists), San Francisco (four points, eight rebounds) and Hartford (two points, 10 rebounds). Last season, he averaged 3.4 points, 5.2 rebounds and 1.7 blocks per game. In 2010-2011, Obeysekere averaged 4.7 points, 5.9 rebounds and 1.6 blocks per contest. Over the course of his career with the Crusaders, he has now totaled 290 points, 385 rebounds and 106 blocked shots.

BURRELL LEADS HOLY CROSS FROM THE POINT: Sophomore Justin Burrell (Dumfries, Va.) is now in his second season as Holy Cross' starting point guard, after being selected as the 2011-2012 Patriot League Rookie of the Year. Through 13 games played this season, he has averaged 12.8 points, 2.5 assists and 2.2 rebounds per contest, while hitting 96.2 percent (25 of 26) of his free throws. During the Harvard game, Burrell posted 13 points, two rebounds and two assists. Previously at San Francisco, he totaled 15 points, two rebounds and two assists. Burrell also had a huge night at Sacred Heart, recording a career-high 30 points, five assists and three rebounds, while making 11 of 15 field goal attempts, four of six three-pointers and all four of his free throws. A few of his other top performances this season came against Dartmouth (19 points, four assists), Texas-San Antonio (17 points, three rebounds, two steals), Morgan State (16 points, four assists), Old Dominion (15 points, six rebounds), St. John's (12 points, five assists) and Hartford (10 points, three assists). Burrell started all 29 of the Crusaders' games last year, averaging 7.4 points, 3.7 assists and 2.0 rebounds per contest, and hitting 77.4 percent (65 of 84) of his free throw attempts. Over the course of his Holy Cross career, Burrell has now totaled 380 points, 139 assists, 86 rebounds and 27 steals, while making 81.8 percent (90 of 110) of his free throws.

BEANS PLAYS KEY MINUTES IN THE POST: Senior center Phil Beans (Toledo, Ohio) is once again playing a key role for Holy Cross in the paint this season. In 11 games played, Beans has averaged 9.4 points and 4.6 rebounds per contest, while making 41.5 percent (17 of 41) of his shots from three-point range. During the victory over Dartmouth, he recorded 18 points and three rebounds, while hitting four of six shots from three-point range. Previously at Sacred Heart, Beans totaled 18 points, five rebounds and two assists, and made six of nine field goal attempts. He also had a big game against Maine, leading the team with a career-high 19 points and eight rebounds. Beans previously earned All-Tournament honors at the Liberty Tax Classic after averaging 8.7 points and 5.7 rebounds per game, including 17 points and six rebounds against Morgan State. In 28 games last year, he averaged 6.3 points and 3.5 rebounds per contest, while making 36.8 percent (21 of 57) of his three-point field goal attempts. Over the course of his Holy Cross career, Beans has now recorded 322 points, 190 rebounds and 20 blocked shots.

BOSTON COLLEGE RECAP: Eric Obeysekere scored a career-high 17 points, but Holy Cross was defeated by Boston College 70-60 at the Silvio O. Conte Forum on Dec. 29, 2012. Obeysekere hit seven of eight field goal attempts and three of four free throws on the day, in addition to pulling down six rebounds. Dave Dudzinski totaled 15 points, six rebounds and two blocked shots for Holy Cross, while Malcolm Miller added a career-high 13 points, four rebounds and two steals. Boston College was led by Patrick Heckmann with 19 points, five steals and three rebounds, and Ryan Anderson with 18 points and 10 rebounds. The Eagles led 5-4 early on, when the Crusaders used a 7-2 spurt to claim a four-point advantage (11-7). Holy Cross was still up by two points (15-13), when Boston College went on a 9-0 run to reclaim the lead (22-15). The Eagles would stay in front by at least four points for the remainder of the half, before eventually taking a 35-30 advantage into the locker room. The Crusaders trimmed the margin down to two points (37-35) early in the second half, before Boston College went on a 15-0 run to claim its biggest lead of the day (52-35) with 9:47 left in regulation. The Eagles were then able to hold onto a double-digit advantage for the remainder of the game, posting a 10-point victory in the end. Boston College shot 46.8 percent from the field (22 of 47) and 41.7 percent from three-point range (10 of 24) on the afternoon. Holy Cross connected on 44.1 percent of its field goal attempts (26 of 59), but made only 10.5 percent of its shots from beyond the three-point arc (two of 19).

MILLER MAKES PRESENCE FELT ON THE WING: Sophomore forward Malcolm Miller (Laytonsville, Md.) has become one of the top perimeter players for the Crusaders. In 13 games played so far this season, he has averaged 5.6 points, 4.9 rebounds, 1.6 assists and 0.8 blocks per contest. During the Boston College game, Miller posted a career-high 13 points, four rebounds and two steals. Previously at San Francisco, he totaled eight points, six rebounds and two assists. Earlier in the season, Miller recorded 10 points and seven rebounds against New Hampshire, while scoring 10 points against Texas-San Antonio. As a freshman in 2011-2012, he averaged 2.4 points and 2.1 rebounds per game. Over the course of his collegiate career, Miller has now totaled 124 points, 109 rebounds, 34 assists, 21 blocked shots and 17 steals.

HOLY CROSS AGAINST THE IVY LEAGUE: The Crusaders have enjoyed a decent amount of success against schools from the Ivy League over the last 13 years. Holy Cross stands 25-21 against Ivy League foes since the beginning of the 1999-2000 season. The Crusaders have lost five of their last eight games against Ivy League opponents, while splitting a pair of contests this season (defeating Dartmouth and falling to Harvard). Holy Cross owns an all-time record of 199-123 against the eight schools which are members of the Ivy League (43-17 vs. Brown, 4-7 against Columbia, 3-2 vs. Cornell, 68-31 against Dartmouth, 41-25 vs. Harvard, 3-3 against Pennsylvania, 2-7 vs. Princeton and 35-31 against Yale).

CRUSADERS PICKED FOURTH IN PRESEASON POLL: In the 2012-2013 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 55 total points in the conference preseason poll, to tie with Lafayette for fourth place. Lehigh placed first in the poll with 96 total points and 12 first-place votes, followed by Bucknell in second with 88 points and four first-place votes, and American in third with 66 points. The preseason rankings were rounded out by Army (sixth, 47 points), Colgate (seventh, 26 points) and Navy (eighth, 15 points).

HOLY CROSS SHINES ON THE DEFENSIVE END: The Crusaders have once again been a strong defensive team so far this season. Through 13 games played, Holy Cross has given up only 61.2 points per contest, while holding the opposition to 40.9 percent shooting from the field and 27.3 percent shooting from three-point range. The Crusaders are also averaging 3.6 blocked shots per game, and are outrebounding the opposition by 2.4 boards per contest. In addition, Holy Cross has held six of its 13 opponents to 60 points or less this season. Last year, the Crusaders ranked first in the Patriot League in three-point field goal percentage defense (30.5 percent) and blocked shots (4.4 blocks per game), while holding their opponents to 66.8 points per game and 42.1 percent field goal shooting overall.

THE LAST MEETING WITH YALE: R.J. Evans had 24 points, four assists and four steals, but Holy Cross was defeated by Yale 82-67 at the John J. Lee Amphitheater on Jan. 3, 2012. The Bulldogs were led by Greg Mangano with 27 points, 13 rebounds and four blocked shots. Devin Brown scored 22 points for the Crusaders, while Dave Dudzinski added seven points and a team-best five rebounds. Reggie Willhite totaled 10 points and seven rebounds for Yale, with Isaiah Salafia posting 10 points and four assists. The Bulldogs led 13-9 early on, before scoring the next 11 points to increase their lead to double figures. Yale would build its advantage to 22 points with five minutes to go in the first half (35-13), before the Crusaders finally came alive with a quick 8-0 run. Holy Cross would go on to trim the margin to 11 points (39-28) late in the first half, before the Bulldogs took a 41-28 lead into the locker room. Yale brought its lead back up to 18 points (51-33) early in the second half, and was still up by 15 (59-44) with 12:32 left to play. The Crusaders then used a 13-2 spurt over the next 3:36 to trim the margin down to just four points (61-57). It was still a four-point game (63-59) with 8:18 remaining, before the Bulldogs responded with a 14-4 run to bring their lead back to double digits. Holy Cross would get no closer than 13 points in the closing minutes, as Yale posted a 15-point victory in the end. The Crusaders committed only nine turnovers on the night, but were outrebounded by the Bulldogs 44-25. Yale also shot 56.6 percent from the floor (30 of 53), while Holy Cross hit just 36.9 percent of its field goal attempts (24 of 65).

TRADITION OF EXCELLENCE: This year marks the 94th season of Holy Cross men's basketball. The Crusaders own an overall record of 1321-890 (.597), 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.

HOLY CROSS NAMES CAPTAINS: Senior center Phil Beans, sophomore guard Justin Burrell and junior forward Dave Dudzinski are serving as the Crusaders' captains for the 2012-2013 season. These three players have taken over the leadership role from Devin Brown and R.J. Evans, who were the Crusaders' captains during the 2011-2012 campaign.

CRUSADERS AT THE HART CENTER: Holy Cross currently owns an all-time record of 333-132 at the Hart Center, including a 3-0 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 31 out of 37 seasons, while recording double-figure home victories 17 times. The Crusaders stand 120-40 at home since the beginning of the 2000-2001 season, including a 76-20 record against Patriot League foes.

STEVENS STEPS INTO STARTING ROLE: Senior guard Jordan Stevens (Gansevoort, N.Y.) has taken over as a starter for the Crusaders on the wing this year, after serving as a key reserve last season. In 13 games played this year, he has averaged 6.1 points, 2.8 rebounds, 2.5 assists and 1.0 steals per contest. During the victory over Maine, Stevens posted his first career double-double with 13 points, 10 rebounds and five assists. He previously had 14 points, four rebounds and four steals against Texas-San Antonio. Stevens also scored nine points at Hartford, while recording seven points and two rebounds in the victory over Morgan State. In 28 games played in 2011-2012, he averaged 5.1 points, 2.1 rebounds and 1.1 assists, while making 44.0 percent (22 of 50) of his three-point field goal attempts. As a sophomore in 2010-2011, Stevens averaged 7.1 points and 2.3 rebounds per game. Over the course of his collegiate career, he has now totaled 425 points, 173 rebounds and 105 assists, while connecting on 32.1 percent (63 of 196) of his three-point field goal attempts.

HOLY CROSS IN THE NCAA STATISTICS: The Crusaders are currently ranked among the NCAA Division I leaders for five statistical categories, through games of Dec. 30. In addition, junior forward Dave Dudzinski stands among the best in the nation in four individual categories. The rankings:

Category Rank   Player / Team Avg.
Free Throw Percent 8   Holy Cross 76.7
  90   Dave Dudzinski 84.5
Three-Point Percent Defense 13   Holy Cross 27.3
Scoring Defense 75   Holy Cross 61.2
Fewest Turnovers 94   Holy Cross 12.8
Fewest Personal Fouls 97   Holy Cross 16.5
Field Goal Percent 123   Dave Dudzinski 49.3
Rebounding 170   Dave Dudzinski 7.2
Scoring 213   Dave Dudzinski 15.1


CRUSADERS COME TO LIFE ON OFFENSE: After struggling on the offensive end of the court during the first eight contests of the season, Holy Cross has found its rhythm over the last five games. In those four contests, the Crusaders have hit 47.7 percent of their field goal attempts (125 of 262), 35.7 percent of their three-pointers (35 of 98) and 75.0 percent of their free throws (63 of 84). Holy Cross averaged 69.6 points in those five games, including a season-high 83 points at Sacred Heart on Dec. 5.

BROWN NOW IN THIRD YEAR WITH CRUSADERS: Milan Brown is in his third season as the head coach at Holy Cross in 2012-2013, with an overall record of 30-41 and a 16-12 mark in Patriot League regular season games. With the win over Army on Feb. 9, 2011, he recorded the 100th victory of his collegiate head coaching career. Brown's overall career record now stands at 125-161 (.437). 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 (69-60 over Coppin State).

HAMILTON STARTS CAREER STRONG: Freshman guard Cullen Hamilton (Washington, D.C.) has been a key player for the Crusaders off the bench this year. Hamilton is currently averaging 5.6 points and 2.8 rebounds per game, while hitting 70.4 percent (19 of 27) of his free throws. During the victory over Dartmouth, he recorded 10 points, five rebounds and three assists. Hamilton previously scored 11 points in the win over New Hampshire. He also totaled 15 points and four rebounds in the season opener at Old Dominion, including the game-winning free throw with 8.9 seconds remaining. His 15 points were the most by a Holy Cross player in his collegiate debut since R.J. Evans scored 15 points against Sacred Heart in 2008.

CRUSADERS IN THE RECORD BOOKS: Two current Holy Cross players have already earned spots in the school's all-time record book. Senior forward Eric Obeysekere currently ranks fifth all-time at Holy Cross in career blocked shots (106). In addition, senior guard Jordan Stevens tied the all-time school single-game record for three-point field goal percentage when he hit all four of his attempts from behind the arc against Hartford on Nov. 23, 2011.

HOLY CROSS ON THE RADIO: Ten of the Crusaders' basketball contests during the 2012-2013 season will be carried by Emmanuel Radio, WNEB 1230 AM in Worcester.  Holy Cross Hall of Famer Bob Fouracre is in his 26th season calling the play-by-play for Crusader basketball on the radio. In addition, Jeremy Lechan and Dick Lutsk are in their ninth year on the Holy Cross broadcast crew, and will handle either play-by-play or color commentary for selected games. All games aired on Emmanuel Radio can also be heard live over the internet by clicking here. Most games not carried on Emmanuel Radio will be streamed by Stretch Internet free of charge, with links to the broadcasts available by clicking here. WCHC 88.1 FM, the Holy Cross student station, will also carry a number of games this year.

CRUSADERS ON TELEVISION: Holy Cross will have at least seven games shown on live television during the 2012-2013 season. The Crusaders had seven television appearances last year, while appearing on television eight times in 2010-2011, nine times in 2009-2010, 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 2012-2013 season:

Nov. 21 at St. John's: SportsNet New York
Nov. 27 at Providence: Cox Sports
Jan. 12 at Lehigh: CBS Sports Network
Jan. 23 at Lafayette: Lafayette Sports Network
Jan. 26 vs. Bucknell: CBS Sports Network
Jan. 30 vs. Army: Charter TV3
Feb. 17 at American: CBS Sports Network

PATRIOT LEAGUE ALL-ACCESS: Live video streaming of most Patriot League regular season games during the 2012-2013 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.

CRUSADER VISION: Live video streaming of all 2012-2013 Holy Cross home non-conference games will be available over the internet through Crusader Vision. The package, done in association with Stretch Internet, is available for $8.95 per game. Season packages are also available for men's basketball only ($29.95) or all Holy Cross sports ($99.95). For details on how to view games through Crusader Vision, click here.

E-MAIL ALERTS: Get all the latest news and results on the Holy Cross men's basketball team sent directly to your e-mail. To sign up for e-mail alerts, click here.

SCOUTING THE BULLDOGS: Yale enters the game with an overall record of 4-10 on the season. The Bulldogs have lost three games in a row, and are coming off an 80-70 setback at Iowa State on Tuesday. Senior guard Austin Morgan leads the team by averaging 12.5 points, 2.6 assists and 1.1 steals per game. Freshman forward Justin Sears is also off to a strong start this year, averaging 10.7 points and 6.6 assists per contest. Yale is led by head coach James Jones, who owns an overall record of 180-201 in 14 seasons with the Bulldogs.

DRIBBLES: Sophomore forward Taylor Abt (Darnestown, Md.) set new career highs with nine points and eight rebounds in the win over New Hampshire. After missing the first three games of the season due to injury, he in averaging 2.7 points and 1.8 rebounds per contest ... Freshman forward Christopher Morgan (Gloucester, Va.) scored a career-high six points at Providence, while hitting all three of his field goal attempts ... Former Crusader George Kaftan (Class of 1949) was selected as one of the 75 best players in the history of March Madness by the NCAA. In addition, the 1946-1947 Crusaders were chosen as one of the top 25 teams of all-time. Beginning in January, fans can vote on the top 15 all-time players and the best team at 'www.NCAA.com/MarchMadness'.