November 28, 2007

Holy Cross Uses Outstanding Defense To Defeat Yale, 60-39

Nov. 28, 2007

Box Score

WORCESTER, Mass. -- Senior center Tim Clifford (Walpole, Mass.) recorded 23 points, eight rebounds and six blocked shots, to lead the Holy Cross men's basketball team to a 60-39 victory over Yale at the Hart Center. Clifford's sixth blocked shot of the night was the 154th of his collegiate career, to set a new school career record. He broke the old mark of 153 blocked shots, set by Nate Lufkin from 2001-2005.

The Crusaders improve to 6-0 on the year with the win, while the Bulldogs fall to 1-4. Holy Cross starts the season with six straight wins for the first time since the 1988-1989 campaign, while improving its Hart Center winning streak to 22 games.

The Crusaders opened the game with a 10-3 run, including a pair of three-pointers by junior forward Colin Cunningham (Memphis, Tenn.). Holy Cross was still up by seven (19-12) with seven minutes left before the break, when it went on a 13-5 run to take a 32-17 advantage into the lockerroom.

In the first six minutes of the second half, the Crusaders used a 10-1 run to build their lead up to 24 points (42-18). Yale would get no closer than 16 points the rest of the way, before Holy Cross finally won 60-39.

The Crusaders turned in one of their top defensive efforts of the season, holding the Bulldogs to just 39 points and 26.7 percent shooting from the field. Holy Cross also recorded 10 steals and eight blocked shots, while forcing Yale to commit 18 turnovers.

Cunningham finished the night with 13 points and a career-high 10 rebounds, good for his first career double-double. Sophomore forward Eric Meister (Boalsburg, Pa.) also played well in the first start of his collegiate career, totaling eight points and nine boards. The Crusaders were without the services of junior forward Alex Vander Baan (Uxbridge, Mass.), who missed the game due to injury.

Yale was led by Eric Flato, Caleb Holmes and Nick Holmes with eight points each.

Holy Cross returns to action on Saturday, December 1, when it faces Dayton at 7:00 p.m., in a contest which will take place at the DCU Center in downtown Worcester.