St. Mary's puts five in double figures in victory against Morrisville State
ST MARY'S CITY, Md. –- Five players scored in double figures while two notched double-doubles in leading St. Mary's (Md.) to an 84-66 victory against Morrisville State on Saturday night in the third round of the 2013 NCAA Division III Men's Basketball Championship Tournament.
The win sends St. Mary's (27-3) to just its second-ever Elite Eight appearance while also setting the school record for most wins in a season at 27. This year's 27 wins breaks the old mark of 26 set by the 2009-10 squad. The Seahawks' last Elite Eight trip was in 2011, falling to Middlebury College by a score of 65-50.
The Seahawks will take on the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor next Friday, March 22 at the Salem Civic Center in Salem, Virginia. Mary Hardin-Baylor (25-5) posted a 71-63 victory over No. 6 Whitworth University on Saturday to punch its ticket to the national quarterfinals.
Junior guard Donn Hill dropped his second double-double of the season – and first since Nov. 25th – with game-highs of 17 points and 11 rebounds while senior forward Jeff Haus added his second double-double of the season as well. Haus poured in 13 points on 6-of-10 shooting and pulled down 11 boards off the bench. St. Mary's posted a +13 rebounding margin over the Mustangs, including a 38-23 edge on defense as Hill helped the charge on the glass with 10 defensive caroms.
Senior guard James Davenport (Baltimore, Md./Loyola Blakefield) contributed a season-best 15 points, five boards, and three assists while fellow guard Nick LaGuerre chipped in 14 points and six assists to quarterback the Seahawks' balanced attack tonight. Junior guard Brendan McFall rounded out St. Mary's scoring with 11 while grabbing seven caroms – all defensive boards.
Morrisville State's (23-6) only lead of the entire contest occurred in the first two minutes as junior guard Rhamel Williams netted the Mustangs' first four points. After that 4-2 deficit at 18:15 of the first half, St. Mary's never again trailed as McFall's three-pointer 12 seconds later sparked 26-12 run for a 12-point lead with 5:32 left in the first half. The Seahawks headed into the locker room with a 35-27 halftime lead as MSC used a 5-0 run in the final minute of the half to close the gap to eight.
Junior forward Kucjok Ater paced all players at intermission with 10 points as Ater was a perfect 4-for-4 from the field while McFall led the Seahawks as he was 3-for-3 from downtown.
Williams' layup 13 seconds into the second half pulled the Mustangs within six but Morrisville would get no closer as St. Mary's exploded for a 15-1 run to boast a 20-point advantage with 15:31 remaining in the contest. The Mustangs never recovered from that run, only cutting the deficit in half by the 9:29-minute mark.
St. Mary's outshot the Mustangs 51.7-percent to 31.7-percent as the Seahawks knocked down 8-of-16 three pointers. Morrisville only made five long-range shots in 24 attempts. Ater and Williams both finished with 16 points while junior guard Jordan Prior chipped in 10 points. Junior guard Brandon Hanks grabbed nine rebounds to pace the Mustangs on the boards.