Feb. 28, 2007
WORCESTER, Mass.­ - Junior center Tim Clifford (Walpole, Mass.) totaled 22 points and eight rebounds, to lead the Holy Cross men's basketball team to an 83-53 victory over Lafayette in the quarterfinals of the Patriot League Tournament at the Hart Center. The top seeded Crusaders improve to 23-8 overall and advance to the tournament semifinals where they will host fourth-seeded American on Sunday, March 4, at 2:00 p.m. The Leopards conclude the season with a 9-21 record.
Lafayette held an 11-10 lead after five minutes of play, when the Crusaders went on a 9-0 run to go in front by eight points (19-11). After a basket by the Leopards to make it a 19-13 game, Holy Cross went on a 15-0 run to increase its lead to 34-13, while holding Lafayette scoreless for a span of 8:19. The Crusaders outscored the Leopards by an 8-2 margin in the final 3:11 to take a 42-18 lead into the locker room.
The Leopards opened the second half with a 7-2 run to make it a 44-25 game. That is as close as Lafayette would come to Holy Cross as the Crusaders then went on a 14-0 run to extend their lead to 58-25 with 12:36 left in the second half. The Holy Cross lead would grow to 37 points (69-32) with 8:50 remaining, as the Crusaders would eventually win by 30 points (83-53).
Senior guard Torey Thomas (White Plains, N.Y.) finished the day with 13 points and four assists, while senior guard Keith Simmons (Kingston, N.Y.) chipped in with 12 points, four rebounds and five assists. Freshman forward Eric Meister (Boalsburg, Pa.) was strong on the boards with a game-high nine rebounds, while sophomore guard Pat Doherty (Scranton, Pa.) had five assists and five steals.
Lafayette was led by Andrew Brown with 26 points, while Matt Betley added 12 points.