June 19, 2003
BALTIMORE (June 19)--A early January matchup with local rival Navy (for the first time since 1994) and a late December home game against perennial NCAA tournament contender Princeton (for the first time since 1992) highlight the 2003-2004 Loyola men's basketball team's nine-game non-conference schedule announced today.
The Greyhounds and Midshipmen, who have played 20 times overall but not since Jan. 10, 1994, will meet at Alumni Hall in Annapolis on Saturday, Jan. 3, 2004. Princeton, which has made either an NCAA or NIT appearance in seven of the last eight seasons, visits Loyola's Reitz Arena on Monday, Dec. 29, 2003. The Greyhounds and Tigers last played in December 1992.
"Our non-league schedule is a challenging one and should prepare us well for the MAAC season," says fourth-year Loyola head coach Scott Hicks. "We're excited to have a couple new teams on the schedule and are looking forward to preparing for the season."
For the sixth straight season, Loyola's year will begin with the Toyota Battle of Baltimore Classic. The Greyhounds will face UMBC in the first round, while host Towson and Coppin State will meet in the other semifinal. The tournament is scheduled for Nov. 22 and Nov. 24 at the Towson Center, with the championship game set to be televised locally on WMAR-TV.
The Greyhounds then face Towson at Reitz Arena Nov. 29 in their first of three non-league home games. In addition to the matchup with Princeton Dec. 22, the Greyhounds will host Central Connecticut for the second year in a row at Reitz Arena Jan. 5.
Loyola's longest non-league road trip will come on Sat., Dec. 6, when the Greyhounds travel to Duquesne for their first-ever meeting with the Dukes from the Atlantic 10 Conference. The Greyhounds also renew their rivalry with Delaware at the Bob Carpenter Center Dec. 10 and play at Mount Saint Mary's Dec. 13 in the 158th meeting of Maryland's oldest college basketball rivals.
The Greyhounds' 18-game Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC) schedule will be released by the league office in late August or early September. The 2004 HSBC MAAC Tournament returns to Albany's Pepsi Arena March 5-8, 2004.
Loyola finished the 2002-2003 season with a 4-24 overall record, 1-17 in MAAC play. Junior Bernard Allen, one of the MAAC's top rebounders (7.0 rpg), and sophomore Bobby Bossman, who averaged 8.1 points per game as a freshman and made a team-high 48 three-pointers, will be joined by six returning players and a strong four-person incoming class in the 2003-2004 season.