Holy Cross Takes Down American 70-64
WORCESTER, Mass. – Freshman guard Austin Butler posted his first career double-double with 14 points and 10 rebounds, as the Holy Cross men’s basketball team earned a 70-64 victory over American at the Hart Center at the Luth Athletic Complex. The Crusaders improve to 11-17 on the season and 8-9 in the Patriot League with the win, while the Eagles fall to 6-22 overall and 3-14 in the conference.
Holy Cross hit 52.1 percent of its field goal attempts and 80.0 percent of its free throws on the night, while holding a 33-23 rebounding advantage. American was able to connect on 40.7 percent of its shots from the floor and 40.6 percent from of its attempts from beyond the arc, but made only 26.7 percent of its field goals and 29.4 percent of its three-pointers in the second half.
Freshman forward Jacob Grandison finished with a team-high 16 points, seven rebounds, three assists and three steals, while junior forward Jehyve Floyd added 14 points, six rebounds, four assists and four blocks. The Eagles were led by Larry Motuzis with 21 points.
MAN OF THE MATCH PRESENTED BY THE UNITED STATES MARINES:
- Following the contest, Butler was selected as the Man of the Match presented by the United States Marines.
- He scored in double-figures for the 15th time this season, while posting a new career high for rebounds.
HOW IT HAPPENED:
- The game was close early on, with the Crusaders holding an 18-15 lead with nine minutes remaining in the first half.
- American then went on an 8-0 run to claim the lead, and would eventually pull in front by seven points (38-31) heading into the locker room.
- Holy Cross started the second half hot, going on 13-1 run over the first seven minutes of play to claim a 44-39 advantage.
- The Eagles used a quick 6-0 spurt to go up by one (45-44), before a short jumper by Floyd and a three-pointer from freshman forward Connor Niego put the Crusaders back on top.
- Holy Cross was later clinging to a 58-56 lead with less than three minutes remaining, when a dunk by Floyd and a pair of free throws from Butler made it a six-point game (63-57).
- The Crusaders would go on to hit seven of eight free throws in the final minute and lead by as many as 10 points, before finally posting a six-point victory.
BEYOND THE BOX SCORE:
- With the win, Holy Cross swept the regular season series with American for the second straight year.
- The Crusaders are now all alone in sixth place in the Patriot League standings, with one game remaining.
- Holy Cross returns to action on Saturday, Feb. 24, when it travels to Colgate for its final regular season game at 2:00 p.m.