WASHINGTON, D.C. – Junior forward Malcolm Miller (Laytonsville, Md.) totaled 14 points, four rebounds and two blocked shots, but the Holy Cross men's basketball team was defeated by American 63-57 at Bender Arena. The Crusaders fall to 12-10 on the season and 6-4 in the Patriot League with the loss, while the Eagles improve to 14-7 overall and 10-0 in the conference.
Holy Cross made 60.0 percent of its field goal attempts on the day (24 of 40), while American just hit 48.0 percent of its shots (24 of 50). But the Eagles held a 24-21 rebounding advantage, and had only seven turnovers while the Crusaders gave the ball away 13 times.
The game was close early on, with the score tied at 16-16 with 10 minutes remaining in the first half. American then went on an 8-0 run over the next four minutes, to claim their largest lead of the day (24-16). Holy Cross scored the next five points to start a 9-3 run, as the Eagles eventually took a 27-25 advantage into the locker room.
The Crusaders opened the second half with a quick 7-2 spurt to claim the lead (32-29), but American came right back with a 12-3 run of its own to take a six-point advantage (41-35). The Eagles' lead would stay between two and six points for the next several minutes, and American was eventually up 55-50 with 2:18 left to play. A short jumper by junior guard Justin Burrell (Dumfries, Va.) and a free throw by sophomore guard Eric Green (Mountain House, Calif.) trimmed the margin to two points (55-53) with 1:18 remaining, before Jesse Reed and Darius Gardner made layups to put the Eagles back up by six (59-53). American would go on to make all four of its free throws in the final 30 seconds to hold on for the victory.
Burrell finished the game with 13 points and three assists, while freshman guard Anthony Thompson (Glenn Dale, Md.) added 12 points and two rebounds. All five of American's starters scored in double-figures, led by Tony Wroblicky with 18 points and six rebounds.
Holy Cross returns to action on Tuesday, Feb. 4, when it travels to Colgate for a 9:00 p.m. game which will be shown live on the CBS Sports Network.