Heading to Holy Cross
The Game: Dartmouth (2-4) at Holy Cross (5-4)
Location: Hart Center (3,600), Worcester, Mass.
Tipoff: Saturday, December 8 at 4 p.m.
Series Record vs. Holy Cross: Crusaders lead 67-31
Live Audio - WUVR 1490 AM (Dave Collins, play-by-play)
Live Video - Crusader Vision ($)
Complete Game Notes
Holy Cross the Halfway Mark
• With this game at Holy Cross, Dartmouth is playing its fourth of eight straight games on the road.
• The Big Green earned its first road win over a Division I team in nearly two years when it bested Longwood in Farmville, Va., last Saturday by a 61-53 score.
• Most recently, Elon smothered Dartmouth on Tuesday evening in North Carolina, holding the Green to 27.9 percent shooting and 1-of-19 from three-point land in a 71-49 defeat.
• Freshman Connor Boehm was one of the only bright spots for Dartmouth against the Phoenix, leading the way with his first career double-double (12 points, 12 rebounds).
• The Dartmouth defense was quite good at Elon, yielding 21 field goals in 59 attempts (.356) and only 5 threes in 25 tries (.200) while gathering up 51 rebounds, its most in over five years.
• The Big Green will need to improve their accuracy at the free throw line, however. They started the season hitting on 77.0 percent (57-of-74) at the charity stripe in the first four games. Over the last two games, however, they have converted just 50 percent (21-of-42).
Series vs. Holy Cross
• This is the 99th meeting in a series that dates back to 1901. The Crusaders have a decided advantage over Dartmouth with a 67-31 record.
• In the first game between the two teams in nearly seven years, Holy Cross pulled out a 65-61 victory in Hanover on New Year’s Eve last year after trailing for nearly 33 minutes.
• Dartmouth won 12 of the first 17 games in the series, but the Crusaders dominated a 40-year stretch from 1945-85, winning 50 of the 61 contests against the Big Green.
• Since then, Holy Cross has a slimmer edge over Dartmouth at 12-8.
• Head coach Paul Cormier is 3-4 in his career against Holy Cross with all but last year’s meeting coming during his first stint in Hanover.
Scouting the Crusaders
• Although 5-4, Holy Cross is looking to win two straight games for the first time this season. Last time out, the Crusaders earned an 83-78 victory at Sacred Heart to snap a two-game skid.
• Holy Cross shares two common opponents thus far with the Big Green, knocking off both Maine and New Hampshire at home. Dartmouth beat the Black Bears but fell to UNH, also at home.
• Even though the Crusaders scored 83 points at Sacred Heart, they are generally a low-scoring squad, averaging 57.3 ppg.
• Like Dartmouth, Holy Cross has struggled shooting the ball this year with its 36.6 percentage among the top bottom 15 nationally. But the Crusaders are exceptionally accurate at the free throw line at 78.7 percent.
• Dave Dudzinski is the team’s leading scorer and rebounder at 13.1 ppg and 8.4 rpg.
• One other Crusaders averages in double figures — guard Justin Burrell at 12.8 ppg, thanks in large part to putting up a career-best 30 points on 11-of-15 shooting against Sacred Heart.
• Milan Brown is in his third season as the head coach at Holy Cross, sporting a 28-39 record. His squad improved seven games last year after his first year in charge, and he spent seven years at the helm of Mount St. Mary’s, giving him a career record of 123-159.
Since shooting a season-high 44.9 percent from the floor in the opener against Maine, Dartmouth has seen its shooting percentage go up and down like a yo-yo. In the odd-numbered games, the Big Green have shot at least 40 percent and won two of the three games. In even-numbered games, Dartmouth has not shot better than 30.2 percent and lost all three by double figures. As a matter of fact, the Big Green have lost 50 consecutive games in which they did not shoot at least 40 percent, dating back to a 67-53 win over Columbia on Feb. 28, 2009.
Boehm Breaks Out
After five games, freshman had just seven points and nine rebounds to his credit. But he broke out at Elon on Dec. 4, topping both totals while recording his first career double-double with 12 points and a dozen rebounds. No Big Green player has hauled in more boards in a game this season.
Neither Dartmouth nor Elon shot very well in their game on Dec. 4, which led to a lot of rebounds. The Big Green snared 51 of the 100 available caroms, the first time they reached 50 since hitting the mark exactly against VMI on Nov. 10, 2007, more than five years ago.
Bench Steps Up Production
Of the 301 points scored by the Big Green in the first five games, 248 were provided by the starters (82.4 percent) in those contests. At Elon, Dartmouth had a bit of a role reversal with the starters accounting for just 11 points (22.4 pct.), 10 by Gabas Maldunas. Both and Malik Gill came off the bench and reached double figures with 12 and 11 points, respectively, while all of the reserves also grabbed 25 rebounds compared to 18 for the starting five.
With the 61-53 win at Longwood on Dec. 1, Dartmouth earned its first win on the road since defeating Alaska Anchorage in the Great Alaska Shootout last season, slightly more than one year ago (Nov. 25, 2011). The last time the Big Green had defeated a Division I team on the road was Dec. 21, 2010 when they defeated Drake, 67-59.
One aspect at which the Dartmouth defense has done well this year is limiting three-pointers. The opposition is shooting just 24.4 percent from downtown, which ranks among the 25 lowest (best) marks in the country.