December 6, 2012

Crusaders Return Home To Face Dartmouth

Complete Release in PDF Format

GAME DAY QUICK FACTS:
The Teams: Holy Cross (5-4, 0-0 PL) vs. Dartmouth (2-4, 0-0 Ivy)
Date: December 8, 2012
Time: 4:00 p.m.
Place: Hart Center (3,600), Worcester, Mass.
Live Video Streaming: Crusader Vision
Holy Cross Radio: Dick Lutsk, play-by-play; Click Here to Listen
Unofficial Live Statistics: Presto Sports Primetime
Series Record: Holy Cross leads, 67-31
Last Meeting: Holy Cross 65, Dartmouth 61 (December 31, 2011; Hanover, N.H.)

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 DARTMOUTH: Holy Cross returns to the Hart Center this week to face Dartmouth on Saturday, Dec. 8, at 4:00 p.m. At the contest with the Big Green, all fans who bring a new, unwrapped toy to donate to Toys for Tots will receive $5.00 off the purchase of a ticket. Following the Dartmouth contest, Holy Cross will take a 10-day break for final exams, before returning to action at San Francisco on Tuesday, Dec. 18, at 10:00 p.m. (EST). The Crusaders will then head to Harvard on Saturday, Dec. 22, at 2:00 p.m., before a seven-day layoff for Christmas.

THE SERIES WITH DARTMOUTH: This will be the 99th meeting between the Crusaders and the Big Green on the hardwood, with Holy Cross leading the all-time series 67-31. The Crusaders have won four straight and seven of the last nine meetings in the series, including a 65-61 victory in Hanover last year. For games played in Worcester, the Crusaders hold a 36-6 advantage, with four straight wins and a 12-3 mark at the Hart Center.The schools first met on December 17, 1901, with Holy Cross winning 25-18 in Worcester.

SERIES QUICK FACTS:
Overall: Holy Cross leads, 67-31
In Worcester: Holy Cross leads 36-6
At the Hart Center: Holy Cross leads, 12-3
Milan Brown vs. Dartmouth: 1-0
Paul Cormier vs. Holy Cross: 3-4
Current Win Streak: Holy Cross, four games
In Overtime: Holy Cross leads, 4-0

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 nine games played this season, he has averaged 12.8 points, 2.6 assists and 2.3 rebounds per contest, while hitting 95.0 percent (19 of 20) of his free throws. During Wednesday's victory at Sacred Heart, Burrell led the team with 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. Previously at Hartford, he totaled 10 points and three assists. Burrell also played well at St. John's, recording 12 points and five assists. A few of his other top this season came against Texas-San Antonio (17 points, three rebounds, two steals), Morgan State (16 points, four assists) and Old Dominion (15 points, six rebounds). 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 329 points, 129 assists, 79 rebounds and 25 steals, while making 80.8 percent (84 of 104) of his free throws.

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 nine games played, he has averaged 13.1 points, 8.4 rebounds and 0.8 blocks per contest, while connecting on 81.6 percent (31 of 38) of his free throw attempts. During the victory at Sacred Heart, Dudzinski totaled 19 points and five rebounds. Previously at Hartford, he posted a double-double with 13 points, a career-high 15 rebounds, three assists and two steals. Dudzinski also had a huge game against Morgan State with 20 points and eight rebounds, including a pair of free throws to give Holy Cross the lead with 17 seconds remaining. Some of his other top games this year have come against New Hampshire (19 points, eight rebounds, three steals, two assists), St. John's (12 points, five rebounds), Providence (11 points, eight rebounds) and Maine (10 points, nine 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 514 points, 324 rebounds and 48 blocked shots, while connecting on 78.9 percent (116 of 147) 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 seven games played, Beans has averaged 9.3 points and 4.9 rebounds per contest, while making 33.3 percent (nine of 27) of his shots from three-point range. During the victory at Sacred Heart, he totaled 18 points, five rebounds and two assists, while making six of nine field goal attempts. Previously against Maine, Beans led the Crusaders with a career-high 19 points and eight rebounds. He also earned  All-Tournament honors at the Liberty Tax Classic, where he averaged 8.7 points and 5.7 rebounds per game. Beans recorded 17 points and six rebounds against Morgan State, posted three points and seven rebounds against Texas-San Antonio, and totaled six points, four rebounds and two steals against Old Dominion. 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 284 points, 173 rebounds and 20 blocked shots.

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 28-39 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 123-159 (.436). 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).

SACRED HEART RECAP: Justin Burrell scored a career-high 30 points to lead Holy Cross to an 83-78 victory over Sacred Heart at the William H. Pitt Center on Dec. 5, 2012. Burrell, who made 11 of 15 field goal attempts, four of six three-pointers and all four of his free throws, netted 20 of his points in the first half to eclipse his previous career high of 17 before the break. Dave Dudzinski totaled 19 points and five rebounds for Holy Cross, while Phil Beans added 18 points, five rebounds and two assists. Sacred Heart was led by Shane Gibson with 24 points and three steals. The Crusaders opened the game by scoring the first eight points, and used a 9-0 run a few minutes later to take a 22-8 lead with 14:14 remaining in the first half. Burrell scored 12 of Holy Cross' first 22 points on the night, sinking four three-point field goals. The Pioneers were able to cut the margin down to seven points (26-19) at the 9:19-mark, before a pair of layups by Burrell pushed the lead back to double digits. The Crusaders would lead by as many as 15 points late in the half, before taking a 46-32 advantage into the locker room. Holy Cross held onto a double-figure lead early in the second half, and increased the margin to 17 points (59-42) with 13:40 left to play. But Sacred Heart then went on an 11-1 run over the next three and a half minutes to get back into the game. The Crusaders were still up by nine (72-63) with 4:24 remaining, when the Pioneers used a 9-0 spurt to tie up the game at 72-72 with 2:02 left to play. On Holy Cross' next possession, Jordan Stevens hit a three-point field goal as the shot clock expired to put the Crusaders back in front for good. Holy Cross then made eight of 10 free throws in the final 1:13 to hold on for the victory. Holy Cross set season highs by making 52.7 percent of its field goal attempts (29 of 55) and 42.5 percent of its three-pointers (10 of 23). The Crusaders also outrebounded the Pioneers 35-26 on the night.

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 24-20 against Ivy League foes since the beginning of the 1999-2000 season. The Crusaders have lost five of their last six games against Ivy League opponents, with the lone victory during that time coming at Dartmouth last year. Holy Cross owns an all-time record of 198-122 against the eight schools which are members of the Ivy League (43-17 vs. Brown, 4-7 against Columbia, 3-2 vs. Cornell, 67-31 against Dartmouth, 41-24 vs. Harvard, 3-3 against Pennsylvania, 2-7 vs. Princeton and 35-31 against Yale).

TRADITION OF EXCELLENCE: This year marks the 94th season of Holy Cross men's basketball. The Crusaders own an overall record of 1319-888 (.598), 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 SHINES ON THE DEFENSIVE END: The Crusaders have once again been a strong defensive team so far this season. Through nine games played, Holy Cross has given up only 59.3 points per contest, while holding the opposition to 39.4 percent shooting from the field and 24.1 percent shooting from three-point range. The Crusaders are also averaging 3.8 blocked shots per game, and are outrebounding the opposition by 2.7 boards per contest. In addition, Holy Cross has held five of its nine 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.

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).

THE LAST MEETING WITH DARTMOUTH: Devin Brown scored 16 of his game-high 18 points in the final 7:04 of play, as Holy Cross rallied from 15 points down to defeat Dartmouth 65-61 at Leede Arena on Dec. 31, 2011. Brown connected on four of his final five shots from the field, two of them from three-point range, and also hit all four of his free throw attempts in the final 30 seconds. The Crusaders shot 51.9 percent from the field in the second half (14 of 27), and hit 85.7 percent of their free throws (six of seven) after the break. Holy Cross also held a 36-27 advantage on the glass and turned the ball over just 11 times. The Big Green started the game hot, hitting nine of their first 13 shots from the field to jump out to a 22-7 lead after the first eight minutes of play. The Crusaders responded with an 11-2 run over the next three minutes to get back into the game. Holy Cross was able to close the gap to three points (27-24) with five minutes left in the half, before Dartmouth expanded the margin back to nine points (37-28) heading into the locker room. The Dartmouth lead was at eight points (44-36) with 15 minutes remaining in regulation, when the Crusaders used a 9-2 spurt to make it a one-point game (46-45). Holy Cross claimed its first lead of the day (49-48) on a put back by Brown with 7:04 left to play, and took the lead for good when Dave Dudzinski hit a pair of free throws with 6:33 remaining. The Crusaders were still clinging to a one-point lead (53-52) with four minutes to go, before using a 10-3 run to put the game. Brown scored all 10 of Holy Cross' points during that late spurt. Dudzinski finished the game with 14 points, eight rebounds and two blocked shots, while Jordan Stevens added 11 points off the bench. Dartmouth was led by Jabari Trotter with 15 points, and Javonte Brooks with 14 points and four rebounds.

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 nine games played this year, he has averaged 6.6 points, 2.8 rebounds, 1.9 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, scoring a season-high 15 points against both Army and Navy. Over the course of his collegiate career, he has now totaled 405 points, 161 rebounds and 90 assists, while connecting on 33.7 percent (61 of 181) of his three-point field goal attempts.

CRUSADERS AT THE HART CENTER: Holy Cross currently owns an all-time record of 332-132 at the Hart Center, including a 2-0 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 118-40 at home since the beginning of the 2000-2001 season, including a 76-20 record against Patriot League foes.

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 4.0 points and 6.4 rebounds over the last five contests. Obeysekere totaled eight points, seven rebounds and two assists at Providence, and pulled down 10 rebounds at Hartford. Last season, he averaged 3.4 points, 5.2 rebounds and 1.7 blocks per game. Obeysekere's best game during the 2011-2012 campaign came against San Francisco, when he totaled 10 points, 15 rebounds and five blocked shots. In 2010-2011, he averaged 4.7 points, 5.9 rebounds and 1.6 blocks per game. Over the course of his career with the Crusaders, Obeysekere has now totaled 260 points, 360 rebounds and 102 blocked shots.

HOLY CROSS NAMES CAPTAINS: Senior center Phil Beans, sophomore guard Justin Burrell and junior forward Dave Dudzinski have been selected 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 served as the Crusaders' captains during the 2011-2012 campaign.

CRUSADERS LOOKING FOR SIXTH PATRIOT LEAGUE REGULAR SEASON TITLE: During the 2012-2013 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 2006-2007, 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' three outright titles are the second-most in league history, and Holy Cross' five total championships are tied for the second-most in conference history with Navy (one outright, four shared), behind only Bucknell (four outright, three shared).

HOLY CROSS LOOKS TO POST ANOTHER WINNING RECORD IN LEAGUE PLAY: With a 9-5 mark in conference games last year, the Crusaders once again finished the regular season with a winning record in Patriot League play. That marked the 14th time Holy Cross has posted a winning record against conference opponents in the league's 22-year history. The Crusaders previously finished with winning records in 1991, 1992, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007 and 2009. Holy Cross' 14 winning seasons in conference play are the second-most in the history of the Patriot League, behind only Bucknell with 17.

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 seventh all-time at Holy Cross in career blocked shots (102). 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 IN THE NCAA STATISTICS: The Crusaders are currently ranked among the NCAA Division I leaders for five statistical categories, through games of Dec. 2. In addition, two players stand among the best in the nation in individual statistical categories. The rankings:

Category Rank   Player / Team Avg.
Three-Point Percent Defense 5   Holy Cross 22.2
Free Throw Percent 11   Holy Cross 78.0
  184   Dave Dudzinski 81.3
Scoring Defense 26   Holy Cross 57.0
Rebounding 54   Dave Dudzinski 8.9
Field Goal Percent Defense 59   Holy Cross 38.6
Fewest Personal Fouls
76   Holy Cross 16.1
Blocked Shots 194   Malcolm Miller 1.4


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 BIG GREEN: Dartmouth enters the game with an overall record of 2-4 on the year. The Big Green have lost four of their last five games, and are coming off a 71-49 setback at Elon on Tuesday night. Sophomore forward Gabas Maldunas currently leads the team by averaging 12.8 points and 6.8 rebounds per game. Freshman guard Alex Mitola has added 11.5 points, 2.8 rebounds and 2.8 assists per contest, while sophomore forward John Golden is chipping in with 10.3 points and 4.2 boards per game. Paul Cormier is in the third year of his second stint as Dartmouth's head coach, with an overall record of 99-147. Cormier's career record stands at 185-258, including seven seasons at Fairfield (1991-1998).

DRIBBLES: Freshman guard Cullen Hamilton (Washington, D.C.) 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. Hamilton added 11 points in the victory over New Hampshire, and is now averaging 6.6 points and 3.0 rebounds per game ... Sophomore forward Malcolm Miller (Laytonsville, Md.) totaled 10 points and seven rebounds during the victory over New Hampshire. He also scored 10 points earlier in the year against Texas-San Antonio, and has now averaged 5.0 points, 5.4 rebounds, 1.4 assists and 1.2 blocks per game this season ... 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 now averaging 3.8 points and 2.3 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 ... Last season, Holy Cross assistant coach Dan Engelstad took part in Shots from the Heart, a project created by CollegeInsider.com to help raise awareness for the growing problem of heart disease ... Holy Cross' six-game winning streak in 2012 (from Feb. 8-25) was its longest since winning six consecutive contests in 2007 (from Nov. 10-28) ... Holy Cross' victory over Boston College on Nov. 18, 2011, snapped a 14-game losing streak against Atlantic Coast Conference schools, since a 63-61 win at North Carolina State during the Dixie Classic on Dec. 29, 1959. The Crusaders' next most previous win over Boston College came on Dec. 1, 2002, when the Eagles were members of the Big East Conference.