Catholic 87, Lycoming 70

Dec. 17, 2001

WASHINGTON - Nine months to the date that Catholic won the NCAA Division III National Championship, the No. 9-ranked Cardinals exploded in the second half to win their eighth consecutive game in an 87-70 win against Lycoming Monday night at the DuFour Center.

Junior Matt Hilleary (Manassas, Va./Seton School) led four Cardinals in double figures, netting a game-high 20 points and adding 10 rebounds for his fourth double-double of the season. Hilleary also added two blocks and a steal.

The Warriors' Thomas Wesner scored all of his team-high 13 points in the first half as Lycoming kept within it close for most of the period. Wesner's three-pointer gave Lycoming the lead at 25-24, but Catholic responded by going on a 14-2 run. Three-pointers by freshman Tim Burke (Lincroft, N.J./Christian Brothers Academy) and sophomore Blair Mills (Hebron, Md./Wicomico) helped CUA to a 38-27 lead with just over three minutes to play. Lycoming managed to get within six as Jason Black hit a layup as the buzzer sounded to mark the contest at 43-37 at the break.

In the second half, Catholic started slow and saw the Warriors get within one at 43-42 on Nick Tagliaferri's three-pointer. But a 23-4 run followed that broke the game wide open. Lycoming showed sings of frustration as they picked up two technical fouls midway through the half. The Cardinals kept the pressure on, as they would go up by as many as 31 points.

Catholic (8-1) shot 32-for-72 from the floor while sinking seven of 23 from beyond the arc. The Cardinals were 16-for-20 from the charity stripe. Junior Craig Avallone (Lincroft, N.J./Christian Brothers Academy) finished with 14 points while sophomore Will Morley (Olney, Md./Good Counsel) and junior Kevin Wise (Newtown, Pa./Notre Dame N.J.) each scored 13 points respectively.

Lycoming (8-2) was 30-for-75 from the field and 7-for-29 from the three-point land. The Warriors were just 3-for-5 from the line. Catholic dominated the battle under the boards, collecting 52 rebounds to Lycoming's 37.

The Cardinals return to action after the holiday break as they host the CUA Pepsi Classic on Jan. 5-6. In the first game of the doubleheader on Saturday, North Carolina Wesleyan takes on Edgewood at 2 p.m. and Catholic battles Swarthmore at 4 p.m. The consolation and championship games will take place on Sunday, starting at 2 p.m.