Patriot League Men's Basketball Weekend Preview - 12.6.13

PATRIOTLEAGUEDOTORG Holy Cross' Dave Dudzinski is six points away from 1,000 entering Saturday's game.
PATRIOTLEAGUEDOTORG
Holy Cross' Dave Dudzinski is six points away from 1,000 entering Saturday's game.
PATRIOTLEAGUEDOTORG

Dec. 6, 2013

Patriot League Men's Basketball Weekend Preview - 12.6.13 Get Acrobat Reader

CENTER VALLEY, Pa. - Final exams are coming soon for Patriot League schools, but each team except one still has at least one more game first. Nine schools will be in action on Saturday, including five playing at home on Patriot League Network.

Patriot League Twitter Notebook - @PL_MBB
*Nine Patriot League teams play on Saturday, with five at home on Patriot League Network.
*American, Boston University and Lehigh are each trying to open with a 3-0 home record.
*Colgate goes for its first five-game win streak since 2008 when it visits Georgetown at Noon on Fox Sports 1.
*The Raiders lead the nation in both three-pointers per game (13.3) and three-point field-goal percentage (51.0%).
*Boston University also aims for a five-game run when it hosts intra-city rival Harvard at 1 p.m.
*BU's 6-2 mark is its best since 2004-05, while Colgate's 4-2 record is its top mark since 2007-08.
*Patriot League teams are up to 39-36 for the season, with a 35-16 mark against the other Mid-Major conferences.
*League squads are up to 18-6 at home, and seven of 10 teams have not lost a game on their home court.
*Navy has a 4-0 mark at home, while six other teams are at 2-0.
*Holy Cross' Dave Dudzinski is just six points away from 1,000 for his career.
*Navy is in a nine-day break for finals, while five teams will enter an exam break of a week or more after Saturday's game.

Patriot League Notebook
Nine Patriot League Teams in Action on Saturday....
Final exams are coming soon for Patriot League schools, but each team except one still has at least one more game first. Nine schools will be in action on Saturday, including five playing at home on Patriot League Network. Boston University hosts defending Ivy League champion Harvard at 1 p.m., American welcomes Brown and Lehigh hosts UMBC at 2 p.m, Army welcomes St. Francis (Brooklyn) at 3 p.m. and Bucknell hosts Columbia at 7 p.m. Two road games will be televised, with Colgate at Georgetown on Fox Sports 1 at Noon and Loyola Maryland at Mount St. Mary's on MASN at 2 p.m. Two other teams play on the road in free webcasts, with Lafayette at Sacred Heart (2 p.m.) on NEC Front Row and Holy Cross at Hartford (7 p.m.) on America East.TV. Navy is the only team to hit exam break, with the Mids returning to action on Dec. 14 at Bryant.

...After Eight Win During the Week
Most of the Patriot League teams are on winning streaks after eight won during the week. It started with Boston University nipping Quinnipiac 69-66 on Monday, and Lafayette topping Wagner 77-65 on the road on Tuesday. Wednesday's action featured an impressive 6-1 record, including Bucknell winning 66-59 at a Kent State team ranked No. 15 in the CollegeInsider.com Mid-Major top 25. Holy Cross topped Albany 62-57, Navy beat The Citadel 79-74, American knocked off Howard 76-53 and Loyola Maryland beat Catholic 87-75 at home, while Lehigh won 57-50 at St. Francis (Pa.).

Patriot League Goes Over .500 with Dominance Against Mid-Major Conferences
The 8-2 record for Patriot League teams during the week brought the League's cumulative mark to 39-36 for the season, including 37-36 against Division I opponents. The reason? Patriot League teams are having great success against their fellow Mid-Major conference foes. League squads have a 35-16 record against teams from conferences that are a part of the College Insider Mid-Major top 25 rankings. The best results have come against the America East (11-0) and MAAC (5-0), with an 8-4 mark against the Northeast Conference

Seven Teams with Winning Streaks of Two or More
Patriot League teams have gone a combined 14-4 since Thanksgiving, leading to winning streaks for a number of squads in the League. Boston University and Colgate have the longest runs at four in a row, with the Raiders hitting that mark for the first time since January 2010. Colgate's 4-2 start is its best mark through six games since the 2007-08 season, while Boston has its best eight-game record since the 2004-05 campaign at 6-2. Holy Cross and Navy each won their third straight game on Wednesday, with the Mids hitting that mark for the first time since January 2011. Lehigh, Lafayette and American have each won two games in a row going into their contests on Saturday.

Protecting the Home Court
All four Patriot League teams to play at home on Wednesday came away with victories, with each of those squads staying unblemished at home this season. That's nothing new, as Patriot League teams are now 18-6 at home for the year and seven squads have undefeated marks. Navy has the top record at 4-0 following its 79-74 win over The Citadel on Wednesday, as the Mids open 4-0 at home for the first time since 2008-09 and have their first four-game home win streak at any point since 2009-10. American, Boston University, Colgate, Holy Cross, Lehigh and Loyola Maryland are each 2-0 at home this year, with three of those squads hosting opponents on Saturday. Boston University aims to start 3-0 at home for the first time since 2001-02 when it takes on Harvard Satudray, while American goes for a 3-0 home start for the first time since 2011-12 and Lehigh tries to do it for the fourth year in a row.

Time for a Study Break
Multiple Patriot League teams have an extended break from action coming up for fall semester finals, beginning with nine days off for Navy until it returns on Dec. 14. American, Bucknell, Holy Cross, Lafayette and Loyola will each have more than a week off for exams following their games on Saturday, while Army, Colgate and Lehigh each have more than a week off ahead as they break for finals.

Dudzinski Approaching 1,000-point Club
Holy Cross' Dave Dudzinski had 22 points in a win over Albany on Wednesday, and is now within six points of reaching 1,000 for his career. Dudzinski aims to become the fifth active 1,000-point scorer in the Patriot League, joining Loyola's Dylon Cormier (1,389), Bucknell's Cameron Ayers (1,182), BU's D.J. Irving (1,130) and Lehigh's Mackey McKnight (1,034). Dudzinski would become the 92nd 1,000-point scorer in Patriot League history and the 47th in Holy Cross annals.

Colgate Shooting the Lights Out
Colgate has scored 90 points or more in consecutive games for the first time since 1995-96, and has 80 or more in each of its four straight wins. The Raiders are doing it from long range, as they made 32-of-51 three-pointers in the two games last week and now lead the nation in both three-pointers per game (13.3) and three-point field goal percentage (51.0%).

Cormier, Hinrichs Filling It Up
The Patriot League has two players in the top 40 nationally in scoring, including Loyola senior guard Dylon Cormier at fourth in the country with 25.1 points per game. Lafayette junior Seth Hinrichs is not far behind at 20.9 points per game, good for 36th in the nation. Cormier opened the year with a five-game streak of 20 points or more and has hit the 20-point mark in six of seven games, while Hinrichs had a four-game run of at least 20 points snapped on Tuesday.

Dialing Long Distance
Patriot League teams are among the national leaders in hitting shots from behind the arc and at the free throw line. Colgate leads the nation in both three-pointers per game (13.3) and three-point field-goal percentage (51.0%), but there are other Patriot League teams high on the list in both categories. Entering the week, Lafayette (9.5) was eighth in the nation and Army (8.0) 40th in three-pointers, while Bucknell (43.4%) stood 16th with Lafayette (39.6%) and Loyola (39.6%) in the top 50 nationally in percentage from long range. Lafayette (78.6%) and Bucknell (78.0%) were both in the top 10 in Division I at the foul line. Lafayette's Seth Hinrichs came into the week leading all active players with a 46.4% mark from long range, while Bucknell's Cameron Ayers, Colgate's Pat Moore and American's John Schoof are each on the League all-time top 10 in three-point percentage.

Team Notebooks
AMERICAN American dominated from start to finish in its 76-53 win over Howard on Wednesday...The Eagles scored the first eight points, led 16-4 early and 36-13 at halftime...American pushed the lead as high as 30 points in the second half, and never saw it dip below 20...Tony Wroblicky had a double-double with 23 points and 12 rebounds, and posted a nearly-perfect shooting night at 11-of-12...Jalen Rhea had 14 points in nine minutes for American, while John Schoof added 13...It was the second straight outstanding outing for the Eagles after a 75-43 win at St. Francis (Pa.) on Saturday...American has won two in a row for the first time since February, and has consecutive 20-points wins for the first time since February 2012...The Eagles go for their first three-game win streak since 2011-12 when they host Brown on Saturday afternoon.

Brown Bears (5-2) at American Eagles (3-4), 2 p.m.
Coverage: Comcast Sports Net+ | Patriot League Network | Live Stats | American Game Notes

ARMY Columbia hit 13 three-pointers on its way to the 81-64 victory against Army on Wednesday...The Lions had an early 11-0 run to take the lead for good, and went up by as many as 19 points in the second half...Kevin Ferguson scored a career-high 19 points on 8-of-10 shooting for Army, while Kyle Wilson added 11..The Black Knights have dropped five in a row, including a 74-72 loss in overtime against Houston Baptist on Saturday...Army will try to back on track at home when it takes on St. Francis (Brooklyn) on Saturday afternoon.

St. Francis (Brooklyn) Terriers (5-3) at Army Black Knights (1-6), 3 p.m.
Coverage: Patriot League Network | GameTracker | Audio | Army Game Notes

BOSTON UNIVERSITY D.J. Irving hit a three-pointer with 2.5 seconds left in regulation to give Boston University a 69-66 win at Quinnipiac on Monday night...The Terriers improved to 6-2 with their fourth-straight victory...BU trailed by four with under eight minutes to play before putting up an 8-0 run and never falling behind again...Irving led the way with 22 points, while Maurice Watson Jr. had 17 points and seven assists...BU won despite being outrebounded 47-27 as it held Quinnipiac to 27-of-67 (40.3%) from the field and just 4-of-16 from three-point range....It was the second last-second win in three days...On Saturday, Nathan Dieudonne finished with a career-high 21 points in a 66-65 win over St. Peter's and his free throw with 1.7 seconds left provided the winning margin for the Terriers...BU rallied from an early nine-point deficit and led 65-59 with under three minutes to go, but St. Peter's scored six straight points to tie the game before Dieudonne's free throw...Watson Jr. had 17 points and six assists and Dom Morris scored 12...The Terriers play host to Harvard on Saturday at 1 p.m....The Crimson are No. 2 in this week's CollegeInsider.com Mid-Major top 25.

Harvard Crimson (8-1) at Boston University Terriers (6-2), 1 p.m.
Coverage: Patriot League Network | GameTracker | Audio | BU Game Notes

BUCKNELL Bucknell used a pair of big second-half runs to get past a solid Kent State squad 66-59 on the road on Wednesday...The Bison used a 15-0 run to turn a 45-38 deficit into a 53-45 lead with 8:58 left...After Kent State answered with eight in a row to tie the score, the Bison closed with a 13-6 stretch in the final five minutes to earn the win...Brian Fitzpatrick led the Bison with 16 points, while Cameron Ayers and Ben Brackney scored 12 and Ryan Frazier had 10...The Bison held Kent State to 37.1% shooting and just 7-of-28 from three-point range...Kent State had been 8-1 overall and 7-0 at home coming into the game, and had a 13-game home win streak dating back to last season...Kent State came in at No. 15 in this week's CollegeInsider.com Mid-Major Top 25 poll...Bucknell put an end to a two-game losing skid as it fell to Mount St. Mary's and Princeton last week...The Bison return home on Saturday to take on Columbia in their last game before an exam break that keeps them off the court until Dec. 20.

Columbia Lions (5-4) at Bucknell Bison (4-4), 7 p.m.
Coverage: Patriot League Network | Live Stats | Audio | Bucknell Game Notes

COLGATE Colgate had the weekday portion of the schedule off, and is in action on Saturday as it tries to extend its winning streak to five at Georgetown...The game will tip off at Noon and be shown on Fox Sports 1...Colgate has its first four-game win streak since Jan. 2-9, 2010, and is looking for its first five-game run since a six-game win streak that it took into the Patriot League Championship in 2008...Offense has been the key, as Colgate leads the nation in three-pointers per game (13.3) and three-point field-goal percentage (51.0%)... The Raiders have topped 80 points in each of their four straight wins and are averaging 80.2 for the season...They surpassed 90 points in both games last week, beating Binghamton 93-64 on Sunday and Tulane 98-86 on Tuesday...The Raiders went 32-of-51 from three-point range in those two games...Colgate's 4-2 record is its best mark through six games since it held the same mark in the 2007-08 season.

Colgate Raiders (4-2) at Georgetown Hoyas (4-2), 12 p.m.
Coverage: Fox Sports 1 | GameTracker | Audio | Hoya All-Access ($$) | Colgate Game Notes

HOLY CROSS Dave Dudzinski scored 13 of the final 15 points for Holy Cross to lead the way in a 62-57 win over Albany on Wednesday...The score was tied at 47-47 with eight minutes to play when Dudzinski's run started, as he started with four straight to give Holy Cross the lead for good...Dudzinski drained a three-pointer with 13.5 seconds on the clock to put the game away and provide the final margin...He finished with 22 points and seven rebounds, while Malachi Alexander added 10...Dudzinski stands third in the Patriot League with 17.6 points per game, and is just six points away from 1,000 for his career...Holy Cross has won three straight games for the first time since last December...All three of the victories have come against America East opponents, beginning with an 80--55 triumph over Hartford on Nov. 24 at the Hall of Fame Tip-Off in Uncasville, Conn...The two teams match up again when the Crusaders visit the Hawks on Saturday...Holy Cross is trying to win four-straight games for the first time since a six-game run to close the 2012 regular season.

Holy Cross Crusaders (5-3) at Hartford Hawks (2-7), 7 p.m.
Coverage: America East TV | Live Stats | Audio | Holy Cross Game Notes

LAFAYETTE Lafayette took control with a 14-0 first-half run and went on to a 77-65 victory at Wagner on Tuesday...The Leopards turned a 12-9 deficit with 14:31 left in the first half to a 23-12 lead with 10:07 to go...Lafayette put the game away in the second half with another run as a 9-0 surge made it 54-41 with 11:43 to play...The lead never dipped below six points again and the Leopards made 11-of-12 free throws in the final 1:13 to seal the win...Bryce Scott led four players in double figures with 18 points, while Nick Lindner had 17 and Seth Hinrichs and Dan Trist each scored 12...The Leopards have won two games in a row after starting the season with five losses...They try to make it a three-game run when they visit another NEC opponent with a trip to Sacred Heart on Saturday.

Lafayette Leopards (2-5) at Sacred Heart Pioneers (2-6), 2 p.m.
Coverage: NEC Front Row | Live Stats

LEHIGH Tim Kempton finished with 18 points and 15 rebounds to lead Lehigh to a 57-50 win at St. Francis (Pa.) on Wednesday...Lehigh held a small lead throughout the game, and closed with an 8-2 stretch after St. Francis (Pa.) cut it to 49-48 with under three minutes to play...Corey Schaefer added 14 points for Lehigh, while Mackey McKnight and Austin Price each scored 12...Lehigh won despite a tough shooting night as it held the Red Flash to 19-of-57 from the field and 5-of-23 from three-point range...The Mountain Hawks have won two straight after also beating Sacred Heart 76-64 on Sunday at home...Lehigh trailed for a total of 20 seconds in the two games...The Mountain Hawks try to extend their home winning streak to six and open 3-0 at Stabler Arena for the fourth year in a row when they host UMBC on Saturday.

UMBC Retrievers (3-6) at Lehigh Mountain Hawks (4-5), 2 p.m.
Coverage: Patriot League Network | Live Stats | Audio | Lehigh Game Notes

LOYOLA MARYLAND After the score was tied at halftime, Loyola opened the second half with a 16-6 stretch and pulled away from there for a 87-75 win over Division III Catholic on Wednesday...The Greyhounds saw Catholic get back within 65-60 with eight minutes to play before going on an 18-5 run to put the game away...Dylon Cormier led five players in double figures with 23 points...Franz Rassman (14), Jarred Jones (13), Tyler Hubbard (11) and Jordan Latham (10) also had double-digit totals...Loyola shot 53% (35-of-66) from the field in the game...The Greyhounds put an end to a two-game losing streak that came at Connecticut and West Virginia...The Mountaineers held a 62-22 rebounding edge on their way to a 96-47 win over Loyola on Monday...Cormier led Loyola with 11 points, snapping his streak of five-consecutive 20-point games to open the season..Cormier had the longest season-opening run of 20-point games in Loyola's Division I history, and first at any point since 2006-07...The Greyhounds play their final game before an exam break when they visit Mount St. Mary's on Saturday at 2 p.m. on Mid-Atlantic Sports Network (MASN).

Loyola Maryland Greyhounds (5-2) at Mount St. Mary's Mountaineers (2-7), 2 p.m.
Coverage: Mid-Atlantic Sports Network (MASN) | NEC Front Row | Live Stats | Loyola Game Notes

NAVY Tilman Dunbar had 28 points, eight rebounds and seven assists and Navy held off a late charge for a 79-74 win over The Citadel on Wednesday...The Mids closed the first half on a 16-4 run to go up 41-26 at the break, and went up by as many as 17 before The Citadel trimmed the final margin to five...Worth Smith added 17 points for Navy, while Kendall Knorr scored 13...Navy won its third-straight game and fifth in the last six, and finishes its non-conference home schedule at 4-0 after a perfect three-game homestand...The Mids have their first three-game win streak since January 2011, and open 4-0 at Alumni Hall for the first time since winning their first nine home games in 2008-09...It is Navy's first four-game home win streak at any point since the 2009-10 season...Navy will have a break for final exams before returning to action at Bryant on December 14.