Nov. 28, 2007
THE GAME: After playing seven games in the first 16 days of the season, Loyola returns to action for the first time in a week tonight at Mount St. Mary's. The series is the most-played series in the history of the state of Maryland and dates back to 1910. The Greyhounds will use tonight as a tune-up to the commencement of league play next weekend. The Mountaineers have dropped four straight to open the season following Monday's home loss to American.
THE COACHES: Loyola head coach Jimmy Patsos is in his fourth season and has registered a 43-51 (.457) career record. The 1989 Catholic graduate has won two of three against the Mountaineers, including the last two. Mount St. Mary's head coach Milan Brown is in his fifth season with the Mountaineers and has a 41-80 (.339) career record. The 1993 Howard graduate is 2-2 against the Greyhounds.
THE TEAMS: Among common opponents, both teams hosted American in November. The Greyhounds collected a 71-67 victory on November 13 while Mount St. Mary's dropped a 66-45 decision Monday. There are no other similar opponents on either team's schedules.
THE SERIES: The most-played in-state rivalry in Maryland state history, tonight marks the 163rd meeting with Mount St. Mary's holding a 93-69 advantage. The first game dates back to January 19, 1910, and these teams were long-time members of the Mason Dixon Conference (1940-1977), meeting for the championship six times including four straight seasons between 1954-57, all Mountaineers wins. The Greyhounds have won two straight, snapping a stretch of four straight Mount St. Mary's wins.
THE PROGRAM: Loyola is playing its 98th recorded season of basketball this season. The first season was 1908-09 and the Greyhounds have posted a 1099-1132 (.493) all-time record.
LAST TIME OUT: Drexel held the Greyhounds scoreless for 6:42 at the beginning of the second half to turn a seven-point deficit into an 11-point advantage to capture the championship of the Liberty Bracket of the Philly Hoop Group Classic with a 54-52 victory at the Palestra. Gerald Brown led the Greyhounds with 16 points and nine rebounds and Michael Tuck collected his sixth career double-double with 12 points and a career-high 14 rebounds, 11 of those coming in the second half. Brian Rudolph established his career best with 10 points and added three rebounds and three assists.
BROWN EQUALS CAREER HIGH: After scoring 32 points two games ago, senior guard Gerald Brown returned to his scoring ways by tying his career high with 33 points against Howard. He now has seven games of 30 or more in his career and has scored 25 or more in seven of his last 13 games dating back to last season. The Baltimore native failed to convert a field goal for the first time in a Greyhounds uniform and scored just three free throws against Vermont for his lowest Loyola total after having his knee drained two days prior to the game.
ISREAL PROVIDING CONSISTENCY: Senior forward Omari Isreal has scored in double figures in three straight games earlier this season and has shown an uncanny consistency at home. Having played just 12 games in Reitz Arena since he was eligible, he has averaged 10.8 points and 6.6 rebounds in those contests, helping the Greyhounds to an 9-3 record. He missed just one of his nine shots against Vermont, tallying a career-high 17 points and followed that with 12- and 11-point efforts in his last two outings.
A HEALTHY TUCK IS A PRODUCTIVE TUCK: Last season, senior forward Michael Tuck battled injuries which kept him out of the starting lineup all season and out of some games. Healthy at the start of this season [knock on wood], last year's MAAC Sixth Man of the Year has been able to provide more of his consistent play. He leads the team with 7.1 rebounds per outing as is averaging 11.7 points in seven outings. The school's all-time leader in field-goal percentage, Tuck has made 35 of 71 from the floor this season (.493).
LEWIS PROVIDES ENERGY OFF THE BENCH: After earning a start in the season's third game, freshman guard Tony Lewis provided payoff for the patience of the coaches with a career-high nine points off the bench in the win over Howard. The Fredericksburg native did not miss a shot, making all four of his attempts from the field and his only free throw for his points. He played a career-best 12 minutes and grabbed three rebounds. He followed that with three assists in his next outing.
HARVEY FILLS DUAL ROLE: Sophomore guard Brett Harvey has shared time from possession to possession at point guard and shooting guard depending on whom is in the backcourt with him. Playing 31 minutes against Vermont, he made all three of his three-point attempts and all four of his free throws en route to a season-high 13 points while handing out four assists without a turnover. He has made all 11 of his free-throw attempts and nine of his 13 tries from three-point range (.692).
FRESHMAN RUDOLPH ASSUMES LEADERSHIP ROLE: Freshman point guard Brian Rudolph has answered the call, giving the Greyhounds a consistent floor general of late. Inserted into the starting lineup for the home opener against Pennsylvania, the 5-11 guard played every minute of the second half as he engineered the comeback win over American. In addition to scoring his first field goal and registering his first assist, Rudolph finished the contest with six points, six assists and five rebounds while playing man-to-man against the Eagles backcourt of junior guards Derrick Mercer and Garrison Carr. He followed that with a career-best seven assists in the win over Vermont and is coming off his career-best with 10 points against Drexel.
SULLIVAN ADDS NAME TO RECORD BOOK AGAIN: Junior guard Marquis Sullivan inked his name to the Greyhounds' record book again following his performance against Vermont. En route to his career-high 27 points, Sullivan connected on seven of eight three-pointers, the total tying for second on the all-time list behind the nine made by Andre Collins in 2006. The Westminster, Md., native established a school record by connecting on all six of his shots from three-point range in last year's home finale. He made all four of his three-point attempts in the home exhibition contest with Villa Julie to open the season and then made his first two long-range shots in the home opener against Pennsylvania to give him 12 straight three-pointers at Reitz Arena. He was the only Loyola player to score in double figures in the first five games this season and reached that number 21 times last season.
GREYHOUNDS FINISH AS RUNNERS-UP IN LIBERTY BRACKET OF INAUGURAL PHILLY HOOP GROUP CLASSIC: Loyola split a pair of games in the Philly Hoop Group Classic over the weekend, losing in the championship game of the Liberty Bracket to Drexel, 54-52. For the four-game commitment, the Greyhounds finished 2-2, defeating Pennsylvania at home and Howard at the Palestra. The two-year-old NCAA rule increasing the number of allowable contests to 31 if participating in a multi-team event will allow Loyola to play a minimum of 32 contests (31 regular season plus one MAAC Tournament game), which will be the second-most in school history. The school record is the 33 games contested in 1948-49.