Loyola Looks To Continue Hot MAAC Start Sunday at Iona

January 15, 2012 | WNST Staff

Opponent Iona Gaels
Date Sunday, January 15, 2012
Time 3:30 p.m.
Location New Rochelle, N.Y. | Hymes Center
TV/Radio Iona Webstreaming
Series Record Iona leads, 40-12
Last Meeting Loyola 88, Iona 85 (OT) – Jan. 30, 2011 at Loyola

Game Data

Loyola University Maryland wraps up a two-game road trip on Sunday, January 15, when it takes on Iona College at 3:30 p.m. in New Rochelle, N.Y. The game is the second part of a doubleheader, as Iona’s women take on Manhattan College at 1 p.m.

First place in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference will be on the line Sunday. Loyola and Iona are both 5-1 in the league and enter the game knotted in the top spot.

Series History

Loyola and Iona will meet for the 54th time in series history when the teams take the court on Sunday. The Gaels hold a 40-12 advantage in the series, although Loyola won the most recent meeting, an overtime thriller on January 30, 2011.

Robert Olson tied the game with a 3-pointer with seven ticks left in regulation, sending the game to overtime where he put the Greyhounds up for good, 86-84, with a layup with 41.6 seconds on the clock.

Six Loyola players scored in double figures in the game – Brian Rudolph (19), J’hared Hall (15), Justin Drummond (14), Dylon Cormier (12), Erik Etherly (12) and Olson (12). It was the first time that a Loyola team had six players score in double figures since December 6, 1991, when the Greyhounds matched the feat in a 98-84 overtime home victory against Mount St. Mary’s.

Good MAAC Start

With wins in five of its first six Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference games this season, Loyola is off to its best start in league play since opening 7-1 in 2006-2007. That year, the Greyhounds lost their conference opener and then reeled off seven in a row.

The 5-1 mark is tied for the best start to MAAC play through six games, matching that of the 2006-2007 team.

Through 16

Loyola’s 12-4 start through its first 16 games of the season ranks as the fourth best start during in that many games in program history. It is the best 16-game start since the Greyhounds moved up to NCAA Division I for the 1981-1982 season, improving on the 11-5 mark that Jimmy Patsos’ 2005-2006 team put together.

The start is the best since 1970-1971 when Nap Doherty’s Greyhounds had the same 12-4 mark and went on to finish 19-7 and win the Mason-Dixon Conference Championship.

The best start through 16 games came in 1940-1941 when the squad led by Emil ‘Lefty’ Reitz went 3-3 through 16. The 1940-1941 team finished 19-4.

All The Way Back

Loyola trailed by 15 points with 16:42 to play in the second half when two Keith Matthews free throws gave Fairfield a 45-30 lead Friday night. The Greyhounds, however, outscored the Stags 36-18 from that point forward to win, 66-63.

The 15-point deficit overcome was the largest erased by a Loyola team since the Greyhounds came back from a 20-point Coppin State lead in the first half on December 10, 2008, to defeat the Eagles, 73-70.

Second In Road Wins

As of Friday night’s games, Loyola’s seven road wins have them tied for second in all of NCAA Division I for victories away from its home court.

Cleveland State leads the nation with eight, while the Greyhounds’ seven wins away from Reitz Arena are matched with fellow Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference side Iona, No. 15/14 Murray State and Wagner for the national lead with seven.

The seven road wins also match Loyola’s total from all of last year when it was 7-8 away from home.

Olson Scores In Bunches

Robert Olson scored seven points in a 23-second stretch Friday night, going on a 7-0 run by himself. Fairfield led 62-55 when Olson pulled up for an 18-foot jumper with 1:42 left in regulation. He then hit a shot with his foot on the 3-point line 15 ticks later to make it a 3-point Stags lead. The junior guard tied the game at 62-62 with 1:19 on the clock with a three from the right side.

Olson finished with 15 points, 13 coming in the second half. Earlier in the stanza, an Olson three at the 14:38 mark cut Fairfield’s largest lead of 15 to 12, and he then knocked one down with 10:04 on the clock.

It was the second game in a row Olson has scored seven-straight points in the second half. He went on a personal 7-0 run against Canisius to move Loyola’s lead back to 11 after the Golden Griffins cut it to four.

The second half has often been a big one for Olson. Last year, he scored nine points in 83 seconds to help defeat Morgan State, and against Iona in Baltimore, Olson made a three pointer with seven ticks of the clock left to tie and send the game to overtime. He then scored the game’s last four points to secure the victory.

Loyola is undefeated in the five games this season that Olson has made three or more 3-pointers. He is now fourth in the MAAC in 3-point field goal percentage (.413).

Cormier’s Steals Help The Cause

Robert Olson’s 7-0 run would not have been possible if not for two Dylon Cormier steals in the backcourt. Cormier tied up Rakim Sanders on the inbound pass after Olson’s first bucket, creating a jump ball with the possession arrow in Loyola’s favor.

Cormier then stole the ball from Fairfield’s Derek Needham after Olson’s second jumper, and he fed a pass to Olson for the game-tying three.

Cormier was one off his career-high with four steals against the Stags. He set his career-best of five just one game prior, against Canisius.

With his nine steals in the Greyhounds’ last two games, Cormier has moved into the MAAC lead with 2.0 steals per game. Loyola tops the conference, averaging 8.6 a contest.

Cormier also tied his career-best with a team-high four assists against Fairfield.

Walker Moves Into Second

Shane Walker blocked two Fairfield shots in the first three minutes of the game, and he then swatted a Maurice Barrow layup with 13:58 on the clock, tying him for second all-time at Loyola in blocked shots.

Walker now has 117 blocks in his career, matching the total of George Sereikas from 1989-1993. Brian Carroll (1997-2001) holds the school record with 213.

Doubled Up

Erik Etherly recorded his sixth double-double of the season and 11th of his career on Friday night when he finished with game highs of 17 points and 10 rebounds.

The junior forward had not posted a double-double this calender with his last coming on December 22, 2011, at then-No. 3 Kentucky.

Etherly’s production has been key to Loyola’s success this season, as the Greyhounds are 8-0 when he played 32 or more minutes in games.

Defensively Speaking

Loyola used two significant stretches of time Friday night in which it held Fairfield without a field goal en route to its comeback.

Ryan Olander made a three with 18:12 to go in the second half for the Stags, giving them a 14-point lead, but they did not make a shot from the field for nearly eight minutes until Rakim Sanders’ jumper at 10:19.

Fairfield did make 5-of-7 free throws during that stretch of seven minutes, 53 seconds, but it was 0-of-6 from the field during that time. The Stags still led by 10 after Sanders’ jumper, but an Olson three and layups by Erik Etherly and Justin Drummond made it a three-point game in the next three possessions.

Later, Loyola held Fairfield to just one field goal in the last two minutes as it went from seven down to the three-point win.

Productive Minutes For Winbush

Anthony Winbush played just 14 minutes Friday night, but he scored five points and had five rebounds in that time. He also played solid defense for the Greyhounds on the perimeter and in the post.

Winbush had both defensive rebounds for Loyola on the Stags’ final two missed shots in the last 10 minutes.

Slowing Stag Options

Fairfield’s Rakim Sanders scored just over a point above his season average on Friday night, finishing with 17 after entering the game averaging 15.8 points per game.

Loyola, however, limited the production of Fairfield’s next three scorers, holding Derek Needham (11.2 points per game prior to contest), Ryan Olander (10.8) and Maurice Barrow (10.8) to four, three and six points, respectively on 6-of-22 shooting from the field.

Second-Half Rebounding

Fairfield led the rebounding battle, as well as the game at halftime, grabbing 19 first-half boards to Loyola’s 16. The Greyhounds reversed those numbers in the second, however, tallying 18 rebounds and holding the Stags to just 12.

Erik Etherly had seven of his boards after halftime to lead all players in the second half.

Last Time Out

Robert Olson scored seven of his 15 points during a 23-second stretch in the second half, erasing a 62-55 Fairfield advantage and tying the game with a three with 1:19 to play.

Dylon Cormier set up two of Olson’s buckets with steals in full-court press, and he recorded an assist on the three.

Desmond Wade made 1-of-2 from the free-throw line after the game-tying three, but then Cormier responded by making two of his own to give Loyola the lead for good in a 66-63 victory on the road. The Greyhounds made three defensive stops after Cormier’s shots to secure the game.

Everyone On The Offensive Boards

Loyola leads the MAAC in offensive rebounding as a team, averaging 14.4, more than a full offensive board a game higher than second-place Niagara (12.8).

Despite the team ranking, no Greyhounds player is higher than eighth in the conference in offensive rebounds per game. Erik Etherly is eighth with 2.6, while Dylon Cormier is 10th with 2.3, and Justin Drummond is 14th at 2.3.

No other league team has more than two players in the top 15 of the statistical category.

3-Point Shooting Back On Track

In its first MAAC loss of the season, a 66-61 defeat on January 2 against Niagara, the Greyhounds shot just 4-of-20 from 3-point range, its worst effort from behind the arc since going 2-of-14 at UMBC on November 17.

Loyola improved by 21 percentage points against Manhattan, going 7-of-17, and it then turned in its third-best 3-point shooting outing of the season on Saturday versus Canisius. The Greyhounds made 9-of-17 (.529), behind only their 6-of-11 (.545) at George Washington and 8-of-15 (.533) versus Marist. The Greyhounds were then .500 from 3-point range (7-of-14) against Fairfield.

Robert Olson and Dylon Cormier did most of the damage against the Golden Griffins and Stags. Olson was 7-of-11, and Cormier made 5-of-10.

Picking Up Where He Left Off

Last Thursday against Manhattan, Dylon Cormier was mired in a stretch of 115 minutes, 46 seconds without making a 3-pointer before he hit the game-winning trey with 3.1 seconds left to give the Greyhounds a 61-60 victory.

Prior to that shot, he had missed his last 10 3-point attempts: his last three at Bucknell, all five against Niagara and his first two versus Manhattan.

The game-winner sparked Cormier who went 3-of-5 from 3-point range and finished 8-of-13 from the field in the win over Canisius. He scored a game-high 23 points for his fifth 20-plus point effort of the season and sixth of his career. Cormier scored 16 of his points in the second half and was 6-of-10 from the field after the break.

Dominating On The Boards

All five Loyola players who saw 15 minutes or more of action against Canisius had four or more rebounds, and four had five or greater. The Greyhounds controlled a 42-24 advantage on the boards, and they allowed Canisius just six offensive rebounds while collecting 16 of their own.

Erik Etherly led the way with seven boards, while Dylon Cormier and Anthony Winbush each had six.

Loyola had 16 offensive rebounds in the game and scored 20 second-chance points.

Etherly As A Distributor

Against Niagara and Manhattan, Erik Etherly tied or set career-highs in assists, and the 6-foot-7 forward leads the team in assists through 15 games this year.

On Thursday against Manhattan, Etherly had a career-best seven assists, eclipsing his previous mark of four, a number he has posted twice this year, including Monday against Niagara.

This year, Etherly has 36 assists, an average of 2.4 per game, tops on the team. He also leads the Greyhounds in rebounds with 7.5 a contest, and he is the only player in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference to lead his team in both rebounds and assists.

Against the Jaspers, Etherly scored eight points and led all players with seven assists and six rebounds. He also had a block and a steal.

Keeping Them Close

For the third time this season, and the second time in three games, Loyola won a game in which neither team led by more than seven points. Manhattan’s largest advantage on Thursday was just four points, while the Greyhounds were never up by more than six.

At Bucknell on December 28, Loyola never led by more than five, and the Bison were only up three on occasions. In November, the Greyhounds defeated New Hampshire on the road in a contest separated by no more than seven.

This year, Loyola is 8-2 in games that are decided by 10 or fewer points.

Second Time With Twenty

Justin Drummond topped the 20-point plateau for the second time in four games when he led all players with 23 points on Monday night against Niagara. The 23 points were his second-most in a game during his career at Loyola, three behind the 26 he scored on December 18 at St. Bonaventure.

Drummond made 9-of-16 shots form the field and 4-of-5 from the line against the Purple Eagles.

Drummond also led all players Monday with nine rebounds and five offensive boards, and nine of his 23 points came as a direct result of his own offensive rebounds.

Road Warriors

The game at Bucknell closed a six-game road trip for the Greyhounds, a venture away from Baltimore on which Loyola finished 4-2 with its only losses coming at St. Bonaventure and No. 3 Kentucky.

The roadtrip is the longest in school Division I history (since 1981-1982), stretching longer than multiple five-game swings, the most recent coming from December 21, 2008-January 5, 2009. That trip took Loyola from Northern California (UC-Davis) to North Carolina (Duke and North Carolina State) and Western New York (Canisius and Niagara). The Greyhounds went 2-3 against those teams.

A Little Bit Of Everything

Erik Etherly led Loyola in four statistical categories at Bucknell: points (18), rebounds (8), assists (4) and blocked shots (4). While it was atypical to lead the Greyhounds in all of the categories, Etherly has routinely topped the team in at least one category this season. He was named the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference Co-Player of the Week on January 2.

He has led the team in rebounding eight times (including ties); scoring, 4; assists, 5; steals, 4; blocked shots, 5.

Currently, Etherly paces the team in rebounds (95 total, 7.9 per game) and assists (26, 2.2), and he is second in scoring (156, 13.0) and minutes played (370, 30.8).

He is the only player in the MAAC currently leading his team in rebounds and assists.

Etherly has scored in double-figures in 21 of the Greyhounds’ last 23 games, going back to January 2011. He has averaged 14.1 in those contests.

Streak Snapped

St. Bonaventure University defeated Loyola 76-66, snapping the Greyhounds’ eight-game winning streak. Loyola had reeled off the span of wins since falling in its season-opener at Wake Forest.

The winning streak was the longest in the school’s NCAA Division I history (since 1981-82), and it is the longest since the 1964-1965 team won eight in a row during January and February.

Honors Abound For Cormier

Loyola sophomore guard Dylon Cormier picked up a couple of awards for his recent play, earning Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference Player of the Week and Jesuit Basketball Spotlight National Player of the Week honors on December 12, both for the first time in his career.

Cormier averaged 20.5 points and 7.0 rebounds in a pair of wins over George Washington University and Mount St. Mary’s University.

This season, Cormier leads Loyola in scoring (16.8), 3-point percentage (.424) and steals (1.8) and is third in rebounding (5.0).


Loyola caused 20 Siena turnovers, and the Greyhounds were credited with 19 steals. R.J. Williams led the way with a career-high five, while Erik Etherly, Dylon Cormier and Robert Olson each had three.

The 19 steals are the second-most in school history, one more than the Greyhounds posted in a November 29, 1997, game at Kent State. It is also the most Loyola has recorded against a Division I opponent. The school single-game record of 20 came on February 28, 1996, when the team closed the regular-season against St. Mary’s (Md.).

Running Away

Runs have been a big part of the Greyhounds’ success early this year. Here is a look at some runs of note:

Opponent Run Start Finish
Coppin State 10-1, 4:26 31-32, 1:36 (1) 41-33, 17:11 (2)
UMBC 16-4, 8:08 35-31, 19:16 (2) 51-34, 11:08 (2)
FGCU 22-5, 6:53 15-16, 8:08 (1) 37-21, 1:11 (1)
Marist 9-0, 1:50 47-48, 11:16 (2) 56-48, 9:26 (2)
Marist 15-3, 5:47 61-57, 6:03 (2) 76-60, :16 (2)
Siena 13-0; 4:27 0-2, 19:28 (1) 13-2; 15:35 (1)
Geo. Wash. 17-0; 3:58 18-19, 6:28 (1) 34-19, 2:30 (1)
The Mount 9-0, 1:55 24-26, 1:59 (1) 33-26, :04 (1)
Canisius 18-4, 10:14 75-57, 10:14 (2) 75-57, 2:11 (2)
Fairfield 36-21, 16:42 45-30, 16:42 (2) 66-63, Final

Century Mark

Head Coach Jimmy Patsos became the third coach in Loyola history to win 100 games when the Greyhounds defeated UMBC, 73-63, on the road. Patsos, who is in his eighth season, took over a team that finished 1-27 during the 2002-2003 season. He won his 100th game in his 215th career game.

Last season, Patsos moved into third-place all time at Loyola in victories, trailing only Lefty Reitz (349 wins, 1937-44, 1945-61) and Nap Doherty (165, 1961-74).

Loyola All-Time Coaching Wins List
1. 349 Lefty Reitz 1937-1944, 1945-1961
2. 165 Nap Doherty 1961-1974
3. 110 Jimmy Patsos 2004-present
4. 85 Mark Amatucci 1982-1989
5. 72 Gary Dicovitsky 1976-1981

Two Of A Kind

Although unofficial, research shows that Jimmy Patsos is one of only two coaches in the last 20 years to take over a team that won just one game the year prior to his arrival.

Brigham Young finished the 1996-1997 season with a 1-25 record. Steve Cleveland took over the following season and tallied 138 wins until his departure for Fresno State after the 2004-2005 season.

Men’s & Women’s Coaches With 100

Loyola University Maryland is one of just 26 mid-major schools that has men’s and women’s basketball coaches with 100 or more victories at their current school after Greyhound women’s coach Joe Logan got his 100th on December 18 in a win at George Washington.

Loyola is the only school in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference to have accomplished the feat, and it is one of only five institutions at which the coaches have both won 100 or more games in 10 or fewer seasons.

Getting To The Line

As a team, Loyola went to the free-throw line 46 times at UMBC, making 31. The 46 attempts are the sixth-most all-time and most since the 2004-2005 squad attempted 53 on December 5, 2004, against Niagara.

Loyola’s 31 free throws made rank 11th on the school single-game chart and were the most since making 32 on January 14, 2009, versus NJIT.

Although his shot was not falling at UMBC, Dylon Cormier still found ways to be productive on the offensive end of the floor. The sophomore guard was just 2-of-9 from the field, but he went to the free-throw line 17 times, making 15, and finished with 20 points.

Cormier’s 15 free throws made are tied for sixth in Loyola single-game history, matching the total made by Mike Powell at Saint Peter’s on December 6, 1997, and Donovan Thomas against Marist on February 23, 2003. The 15 makes were the most by a Loyola player since Jamal Barney set the school record with 18 on January 14, 2009, against NJIT. His 17 attempts rank tied for sixth all-time.

Baltimore Bred And More From Nearby

Since taking over as head coach in 2004, Jimmy Patsos has put an emphasis on recruiting locally, and it has never shown as much as on this year’s roster. Three players – sophomore guard Dylon Cormier (Cardinal Gibbons), sophomore forward Jordan Latham (City) and freshman guard R.J. Williams (St. Frances) are products of schools within the city limits.

Six more players played in high school within 50 miles of Loyola, as the crow flies (thanks daftlogic.com): Shane Walker & Tyler Hubbard, Montrose Christian, 32.6 miles; Robert Olson, Georgetown Prep, 33.9; Justin Drummond, Riverdale Baptist, 33.9; Anthony Winbush, T.C. Williams, 43.7; and Erik Etherly, Annandale, 47.9.


What’s Next

The Greyhounds return to Reitz Arena for a pair of MAAC games in the next week. Loyola hosts Siena on Thursday night at 6:30 p.m., and it then hosts Saint Peter’s on Sunday at 12 noon.