March 18, 2008
Baltimore, Md. - The winningest men's basketball team in Loyola College's Division I history came within one victory of a regular season title in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference and reach the tournament semifinals for the second straight season, the first time the Greyhounds have accomplished that feat.
The 19-14 record marked Loyola's most wins since 1970-71, when it ruled the old Mason-Dixon Conference. Coupled with 18 victories posted in 2006-07, it was Loyola's best two-season total since 1948-50.
In four seasons, head coach Jimmy Patsos has guided the program to significant growth, taking the Greyhounds from six wins to 15 to 18 and this campaign's high-water mark.
Playing on a gimpy left knee, Brown averaged 18.6 points and was named All-MAAC First Team for the second straight year. Isreal blocked 54 shots, more than half of Loyola's team total, and the second-most in school history for a single season.
Michael Tuck, a fifth-year senior who began his college career prior to Patsos' arrival, capped his career by being named All-MAAC Third Team. He averaged 11.8 points, a team-high 7.2 rebounds and led the regulars by making 50.8 percent of his field goal attempts.
Tuck, the MAAC's Sixth Man of the Year in 2006-07, returned to the starting lineup as a senior. Junior guard Marquis Sullivan became the super-sub off the bench, as he averaged 12.2 points per game and was voted the conference's Sixth Man of the Year. Sullivan also became Loyola's all-time leader in career three-pointers during the season.
Freshman point guard Brian Rudolph was voted MAAC co-Rookie of the Year. He was honored as Rookie of the Week six times with each of those coming during conference play. Seventeen of the Greyhounds' 19 wins came with Rudolph at the point, a move made possible by the versatility of sophomore Brett Harvey who was a mainstay in the starting lineup for his second season.
After opening MAAC play with an even 3-3 record in mid-January, the Greyhounds beat Marist by 12 to begin a sterling 11-2 stretch run that took them to first place in the conference in late February. It included an overtime win at Siena and a Reitz Arena conquest of Rider on the same weekend. Those two teams shared first place in the MAAC when Loyola played them.
A 12-6 MAAC record was good for a share of third place in the regular season for the second straight season. Seeded fourth on the basis of the tiebreaker policy, Loyola beat Fairfield in the quarterfinals of the MAAC tournament for the second straight year, and was eliminated in the semifinals by eventual champion Siena.
The 2008-09 season will mark the 100th anniversary of men's basketball at Loyola. The college will commemorate that milestone on the weekend of Nov. 14-16.
- Gerald Brown's 18.6 average was third highest in the MAAC.
- Brown needed just two seasons to become Loyola's 17th all-time leading scorer with 1,256 points.
- Brown became only the second player in Loyola to average 20 points in his Greyhounds career.
- Brown's 190 free throws made were the second-most by a Loyola player in a single season.
- Omari Isreal's 18 rebounds in the MAAC Semifinals marked a career high and was the third-best performance in MAAC Tournament history.
- Marquis Sullivan led the MAAC in three-pointers made per game.
- Sullivan's 94 threes were the second-most ever by a Greyhound.
- Sullivan will enter his senior season with 218 career threes, a school record. He made four in as many possessions at Canisius Feb. 3 to become Loyola's all-time leader from long distance.
- Brett Harvey, a combo guard, led the MAAC in assist-to-turnover ratio. He finished with 123 assists, and just 44 turnovers.
- MAAC co-Rookie of the Year Brian Rudolph had a team-high 143 assists.
- Michael Tuck played 111 games in his career, tying him for eighth on the Greyhounds' all-time list.
- Tuck's career field goal percentage of .537 is the fourth best in Loyola history.
- The Greyhounds' 76.8 free throw marksmanship was seventh in the nation through conference tournament play. Sullivan made 85.0, and Harvey 83.0.
- The 18 three-pointers made in the home win over Siena was a school record and matched the conference's all-time high.
- Loyola played a school-record 31 games in the regular season. Its total of 33 games tied the school record.
- Loyola went 11-2 at Reitz Arena, an .846 winning percentage that marks its best showing ever there.