Crusaders Set For Contest At Boston College

Taylor Abt

Complete Release in PDF Format

The Teams: Holy Cross (7-5, 0-0 PL) vs. Boston College (6-5, 0-0 ACC)
Date: December 29, 2012
Time: 2:00 p.m.
Place: Silvio O. Conte Forum (8,606), Chestnut Hill, Mass.
Live Video Streaming: ESPN3; John Brickley, play-by-play; Malcolm Huckaby, color
Holy Cross Radio: WNEB 1230AM, Worcester; Bob Fouracre, play-by-play; Click Here to Listen
Unofficial Live Statistics: Gametracker
Series Record: Holy Cross leads, 58-53
Last Meeting: Holy Cross 86, Boston College 64; November 18, 2011; Worcester, Mass.

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 CONCLUDE ROAD TRIP AT BOSTON COLLEGE: Holy Cross will play the last contest of a three-game road swing when it heads to  Boston College on Saturday, Dec. 29, at 2:00 p.m. The Crusaders will next return home to face Yale at 7:00 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 4. Holy Cross then closes out non-conference play with a home game against Columbia on Tuesday, Jan. 8, at 7:00 p.m.

THE SERIES WITH BOSTON COLLEGE: This will be the 112th meeting between the Crusaders and the Eagles on the hardwood, with Holy Cross leading the all-time series 58-53. Boston College has won 16 of the last 18 games the schools have played, but the Crusaders did post an 86-64 victory last season at the DCU Center. For games played at the Conte Forum, the Eagles hold a 10-1 advantage with 10 consecutive victories. The teams first met on Jan. 9, 1906, when Holy Cross posted a 35-14 win on the road. There were also two games played between the schools in 1921, when Boston College challenged Holy Cross to a home and home series, even though the Crusaders had not fielded a team in 11 years. Holy Cross won both of those games, 28-26 on the road (March 5, 1921) and 35-23 at home (March 11, 1921).

Overall: Holy Cross leads, 58-53
In Chestnut Hill: Boston College leads, 23-17
At the Conte Forum: Boston College leads, 10-1
Milan Brown vs. Boston College: 1-1
Steve Donahue vs. Holy Cross: 1-1
Current Win Streak: Holy Cross, one game
In Overtime: Holy Cross leads, 4-2

CRUSADERS AGAINST THE ATLANTIC COAST CONFERENCE: Holy Cross has an all-time record of 61-73 against the 12 schools which currently compete in the Atlantic Coast Conference. The majority of those games were played against Boston College, before the Eagles joined the ACC. In addition to their 58-53 all-time mark against Boston College, the Crusaders stand 0-2 against Clemson, 0-2 vs. Duke, 0-5 against Maryland, 0-1 vs. Miami, 1-1 against North Carolina, 2-5 vs. North Carolina State and 1-3 against Wake Forest.

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 12 games played, he has averaged a team-best 15.1 points, 7.3 rebounds and 1.0 blocks per contest, while connecting 48.8 percent (63 of 129) of his field goals and 85.7 percent (48 of 56) of his free throws. During the Harvard game, Dudzinski led the team with 22 points, two assists, two blocks and two steals. Previously at San Francisco, he totaled a career-high 31 points, seven rebounds and two blocks. Dudzinski also played well against Dartmouth, recording 10 points, four rebounds and two assists. 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) 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 577 points, 336 rebounds and 53 blocked shots, while connecting on 50.2 percent (211 of 421) of his field goals and 80.6 percent (133 of 165) of his free throws.

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 four games. In those four contests, the Crusaders have hit 48.8 percent of their field goal attempts (99 of 203), 41.8 percent of their three-pointers (33 of 79) and 76.0 percent of their free throws (57 of 75). Holy Cross averaged 72.0 points in those four games, including a season-high 83 points at Sacred Heart on Dec. 5.

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 12 games played this season, he has averaged 13.5 points, 2.6 assists and 2.3 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 376 points, 137 assists, 85 rebounds and 26 steals, while making 81.8 percent (90 of 110) of his free throws.

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).

HARVARD RECAP: Dave Dudzinski scored a game-high 22 points, but Holy Cross was defeated by Harvard  72-65 at Lavietes Pavilion on Dec. 22, 2012. Dudzinski hit seven of 10 shots for the field, two of three attempts from three-point range and all six of his free throws on the day.  Justin Burrell totaled 13 points, two assists and two rebounds for the Crusaders, while Phil Beans added nine points and seven rebounds. The Crimson was led by Wesley Saunders with 15 points, four rebounds and three steals, and Siyani Chambers with 14 points and six assists. Holy Cross played strong defense early on, jumping out to a 6-1 lead after the first five minutes of play. Harvard scored the next five points to tie up the game, and the score was still tied at 13-13 with 10 minutes left in the half. The Crimson were later up by two points (25-23) with 4:38 to go until the break, before closing out the half on an 11-4 run to take a 36-27 advantage into the locker room. Harvard started the second half strong, using a quick 9-4 spurt to increase its lead to 14 points (45-31). The Crimson was still up by 14 (52-38) with 14:55 left to play, when the Crusaders went on a 15-0 run to regain the lead. Burrell scored five points during that spurt, while Dudzinski and Eric Obeysekere added four points each. The score stayed close for the next several minutes, and Holy Cross was up 60-59 with 5:43 remaining. Harvard then used an 8-2 spurt over the next three minutes to pull back in front for good. The Crusaders were able to close back within two points (67-65) with 1:02 left to play after a pair of free throws by Dudzinski, and had one last possession down by three (68-65) in the final minute. But a jumper by Burrell was off the mark, and the Crimson then hit all four of its free throws in the final 15 seconds to hold on for the win. Holy Cross made 49.0 percent (25 of 51) of its field goal attempts on the day and 83.3 percent (10 of 12) of its free throws. But Harvard also had a strong afternoon shooting the ball, connecting on 50.0 percent (25 of 50) of its short from the floor and 75.0 percent (15 of 20) of its 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 10 games played, Beans has averaged 9.8 points and 4.6 rebounds per contest, while making 42.1 percent (16 of 38) 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 317 points, 185 rebounds and 20 blocked shots.

HOLY CROSS SHINES ON THE DEFENSIVE END: The Crusaders have once again been a strong defensive team so far this season. Through 12 games played, Holy Cross has given up only 60.4 points per contest, while holding the opposition to 40.4 percent shooting from the field and 25.8 percent shooting from three-point range. The Crusaders are also averaging 3.7 blocked shots per game, and are outrebounding the opposition by 2.7 boards per contest. In addition, Holy Cross has held six of its 12 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.

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 12 games played this year, he has averaged 6.1 points, 2.9 rebounds, 2.3 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 419 points, 171 rebounds and 101 assists, while connecting on 33.0 percent (63 of 191) of his three-point field goal attempts.

THE LAST MEETING WITH BOSTON COLLEGE: Devin Brown totaled 32 points, five rebounds and five assists, to lead Holy Cross to an 86-64 victory over Boston College at the DCU Center on Nov. 18, 2011. Brown hit 11 of 19 shots from the field, including five of nine attempts from three-point range, and also connected on five of seven free throws. Holy Cross made 53.4 percent of its field goal attempts in the game (31 of 58) and 52.4 percent of hits three-pointers (11 of 21). The Crusaders also held a 38-29 advantage on the glass, and committed just nine turnovers all night. In addition, Holy Cross snapped a four-game losing streak against Boston College, with its first win over the Eagles since 2002. The game was close early on, and Holy Cross held a 16-13 advantage with 10:22 left in the first half. The Crusaders then went on a 12-3 run over the next four minutes, to claim a 12-point lead (28-16). Boston College would cut the gap to six points on two occasions, before Holy Cross took a 38-30 lead into the locker room at halftime. The Eagles trimmed their deficit to five points early in the second half (45-40), before Brown scored the next four points to put the Crusaders back up by nine. Holy Cross would later hold a 60-50 lead with 10 minutes left in regulation, when it went on a 12-1 run to put the game away. Brown would score eight more points during that spurt, with two three-pointers and a breakaway dunk. Boston College would get no closer than 19 points the rest of way, before the Crusaders eventually posted a 22-point victory.  R.J. Evans finished the night with 14 points, five rebounds, four assists and four steals, while Dave Dudzinski added 10 points and six rebounds. The Eagles were led by Jordan Daniels with 15 points.

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 12 games played so far this season, Miller has averaged 5.0 points, 5.0 rebounds, 1.7 assists and 0.9 blocks per contest. During the victory 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 111 points, 105 rebounds, 33 assists, 21 blocked shots and 15 steals.

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.

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 4.1 points, 6.4 rebounds and 0.9 blocks over the last eight contests. During the Harvard game, Obeysekere posted six points and five rebounds. Previously at San Francisco, he recorded four points and eight rebounds. Obeysekere also 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. In 2010-2011, Obeysekere averaged 4.7 points, 5.9 rebounds and 1.6 blocks per game. Over the course of his career with the Crusaders, he has now totaled 273 points, 379 rebounds and 106 blocked shots.

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 6.1 points and 2.9 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.

TRADITION OF EXCELLENCE: This year marks the 94th season of Holy Cross men's basketball. The Crusaders own an overall record of 1321-889 (.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.

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 30-40 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 125-160 (.439). 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).

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.

HOLY CROSS IN THE NCAA STATISTICS: The Crusaders are currently ranked among the NCAA Division I leaders for seven statistical categories, through games of Dec. 23. In addition, two players stand among the best in the nation in individual statistical categories. The rankings:

Category Rank   Player / Team Avg.
Free Throw Percent 7   Holy Cross 77.2
  79   Dave Dudzinski 85.7
Three-Point Percent Defense 9   Holy Cross 25.8
Scoring Defense 64   Holy Cross 60.4
Fewest Personal Fouls 100   Holy Cross 16.5
Fewest Turnovers 109   Holy Cross 13.1
Field Goal Percent Defense 115   Holy Cross 40.4
Rebounding Margin 125   Holy Cross +2.7
Field Goal Percent 136   Dave Dudzinski 48.8
  214   Justin Burrell 44.8
Rebounding 161   Dave Dudzinski 7.3
Scoring 215   Dave Dudzinski 15.1

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 EAGLES: Boston College enters the contest with an overall record of 6-5 on the season. The Eagles have won their last three games, and are coming off a 71-68 victory over Providence last Saturday. Sophomore forward Ryan Anderson leads the team by averaging 16.1 points and 9.7 rebounds per game. Freshman guard Olivier Hanlan has added 12.8 points and 4.1 rebounds per contest, while freshman guard Joe Rahon is chipping in with 10.4 points and 4.0 assists per game. The Eagles are led by Steve Donahue, who is in his third season as Boston College's head coach with a record of 36-40. Donahue's career record stands at 182-178, including 10 years at Cornell.

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 3.0 points and 1.8 rebounds per contest ... 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 ''.