Sports Information Director
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(#2 South) Holy Cross (20-10)
Game #31: Wednesday, Feb. 26 - 7:00 p.m.
vs. (#3 North) No. 19 Robert Morris (22-8)
McKenna Arena (Notre Dame, Ind.)
Next Up in Saints Basketball: After losing the tie-breaker to St. Francis (Ill.) on senior night, the Saints got a big boost from Trinity International as the Trojans upset the Fighting Saints on Saturday night to bring us to tonight's situation. For just the second time in program history, the Saints will host a CCAC postseason game as they take on No. 19 Robert Morris University on Wednesday night.
Following Live: Wednesday night's matchup with Robert, like all Saints home games this season, will be broadcasted live courtesy of the Regional Radio Sports Network (RRSN). Live video links can be found on the men's basketball page at hcsaints.com. Duane Lewandowski, Matt Kopsea and Pat Doherty will have the call. Live video can be found here.
Last Time Out: The Saints wrapped up the regular season on the road Saturday as they squared off with Calumet St. Joseph. A dominant first half performance, where they went 18-for-31 from the floor and 5-for-10 from distance, helped the Saints take a 43-29 lead at the break. With their lead up to 11 points in the second half, the Crimson Wave rallied off a 13-0 run to tie the game at 49-49. The Saints would reclaim a five-point advantage with 8:40 to play in the game, but the Crimson Wave continued to get productive baskets while opening up a six-point lead with five minutes remaining. Seven straight points by the Saints put them back in front with time running out. Calumet St. Joseph would have one final possession to take the lead with three seconds remaining but it was Parker Dominguez who came up with the play of the day after stealing the inbound pass. Dominguez would go 1-for-2 from the line but grab an offensive rebound to get another crack at the charity stripe. Another 1-for-2 performance from the line extended the lead to three as the Saints would hold on to win 69-66 following the missed full-court shot attempt by the Crimson Wave. Brandon Evans led the Saints with 17 points and six rebounds while Parker Dominguez and Zoe Bauer each added 14.
Head Coach Mike McBride: Hired as the third head coach in Holy Cross men's basketball history last spring, McBride enters his first season with the Saints after serving a stint as the associate head coach at Tusculum (Tenn.) College. This is also McBride's first season as a head coach at the collegiate level. Currently, McBride and the Saints won a program-best 20 games while finishing the regular season 20-10 overall. The enter tonight as the No. 2 seed in the CCAC South Division.
Series Notes: Wednesday night's postseason matchup will be the sixth all-time meeting between the two programs in a series dating back to the 2009-2010 season. The Eagles have won the previous five meetings, including the lone regular season meeting earlier this month where the Saints fell in Arlington Heights, Ill. by a score of 80-76. Clayton Webb led the Saints with a career-best 24 points and 10 rebounds. This was the first time this season that the Saints had lost a game when scoring 70 or more points.
Looking at Robert Morris: The Eagles wrapped up the regular season with a 22-8 overall record, finishing third in the CCAC North Division ... They enter Wednesday night's matchup as winner's of four straight and ranked No. 19 in the NAIA Division II poll ... Sean Montgomery (4th, 18.6 ppg) and Kashaune McKinney (17th, 13.9 ppg) highlight a duo scoring attack for the Eagles ... Having appeared in only 17 games this year, Jarrell Turner provides a solid scoring and rebounding option for the Eagles (15.4 ppg and 9.4 rpg).
Looking at the Key Matchups: Ranking as the second-best scoring offense in the league (83.8 ppg), the Eagles be up against the top scoring defense in the league with the Saints (67.6 ppg) ... The Saints rank fourth in the league three-point field goal percentage (36.2%) and will be up against the top three-point field goal defensive team in Robert Morris (30.3%) ... The Saints have the fifth-best rebounding margin (+3.1) in the conference while the Eagles rank second in rebounding offense (40.3); conversely, the Eagles give 40.4 rebounds per game giving them a negative rebounding margin (-0.1).
Being Aggressive Inside: The Saints found the majority of their offensive success coming inside the paint in their prior meeting with the Eagles on February 15. Clayton Webb finished with a career-best 24 points as the Saints scored 42 of their 76 point in the paint. Conversely, the Saints must limit the opportunities inside for Robert Morris. The Eagles added 46 points in the paint in their last meeting and had 14 offensive rebounds leading to 17 second-chance points.
In their Last Home Postseason Game: The Saints have hosted just one prior CCAC playoff game in their history which happened during the 2011-2012 CCAC Quarterfinals against Trinity Christian College. In the game, the Saints knocked off the Trolls with a last-second three-pointer by Yama Kader to win by a final score of 78-76.
This and That: A win in Wednesday night's Quarterfinal matchup would likely send the Saints to Milwaukee, Wis. to take on No. 1 Cardinal Stritch ... The Saints enter Wednesday night's matchup with a 10-3 record at McKenna Arena; a program-best ... The Saints are 16-4 when outrebounding opponents and 15-1 when scoring 70 points or more ... In the 13 prior home games the Saints average 69.9 points per game while allowing 64.5.
Updated CCAC bracket pairings can be found here.