Loyola Tries to Continue Best MAAC Start Sunday at Peacocks

February 05, 2012 | WNST Staff

Opponent Saint Peter’s Peacocks
Date Sunday, February 5, 2012
Time 12:00 p.m.
Location Jersey City, N.J. | Yanitelli Center
TV | Radio MAAC.TV Webstreaming
Series Record Saint Peter’s leads, 42-33
Last Meeting Loyola 65, Saint Peter’s 54 – Jan. 22, 2012 at Loyola

Game Data

Loyola University Maryland travels to Jersey City, N.J., for a game on Super Bowl Sunday, February 5, 2012, at Saint Peter’s College. Tip-off has been moved to 12 noon in the Yanitelli Center.

Series History

Sunday’s game will be the 76th all-time meeting by the fellow Jesuit schools with Saint Peter’s holding a 42-33 lead in the series. The series is the second most-played amongst the Greyhounds’ current opponents, trailing only Mount St. Mary’s.

Loyola picked up a 65-54 victory over the Peacocks, last year’s MAAC Champions, on Sunday, January 22, in the teams’ first meeting this season. Erik Etherly scored 19 for the Greyhounds, and Robert Olson added 15.

The teams split last year’s regular-season meetings, each winning on the other’s home court. Saint Peter’s then defeated Loyola in the MAAC Quarterfinals, en route to winning the MAAC Championship and advancing to the NCAA Tournament.

Five Under Sixty

For the first time in its NCAA Division I history (since 1981-1982), Loyola has held five consecutive opponents to fewer than 60 points.

Over the last four games, all Loyola victories, the Greyhounds have held Siena, Saint Peter’s, Niagara and Canisius to an average of 52.8 points per game.

The Greyhounds previously had held three teams to sub-60 performances just once since joining Division I, and that came during 1981-1982, their first season at this level.

The last time a Loyola team held four-straight teams under 60, regardless of division, came in January-February 1977 when it held six teams in a row – Southampton, Saint Peter’s, Randolph-Macon, Mount St. Mary’s, Baltimore and Philadelphia Textile – to 59 or fewer. The Greyhounds, however, were just 3-3 in that stretch.

Super Bowl Stats

The game against Saint Peter’s will mark the 14th time the Greyhounds will have played on the date of the Super Bowl, and Loyola is 8-5 in the 13 previous games.

As far as signs go, NFC teams are 6-2 when Loyola wins, and NFC teams have a slim 7-6 advantage on days when the Greyhounds play.

Loyola was a winner the last time the Giants and Patriots met in the Super Bowl. The Greyhounds defeated Canisius, 74-62, on February 3, 2008.

Something Had To Give

Entering Friday night’s game against Rider, Loyola had held four consecutive opponents to 57 or fewer points, while the Broncs were averaging 87.5 points in their previous three games.

Loyola’s defense prevailed in the contest, holding Rider to 12 points in the first half and just 46 overall. It was the Broncs’ lowest scoring game since February 2008 when Fairfield held them to 40.

Almost 20 Years

Rider’s 46 points were the fewest Loyola has allowed since the Greyhounds defeated Niagara, 68-45, on February 21, 1992, a stretch of 521 games.

Loyola has now held opponents to 49 or fewer points eight times since joining NCAA Division I in 1981-1982. The Greyhounds did it twice each in 1981-1982, 1984-1985 and 1991-1992 and once in 1983-1984.

Field-Goal Defense

Loyola held Rider to 30.6-percent from the floor (15-of-49), the lowest field-goal percentage of the season for a Greyhound opponent. The Broncs’ 15 field goals made were the lowest of the year, as well.

Rider’s field-goal percentage was the lowest by a Loyola opponent since Mount St. Mary’s shot 28.8-percent (17-of-59) on December 11, 2010.

Two In A Row For Walker

Shane Walker had not recorded a double-figure rebounding performance this season until January 29 at Canisius, and now he has done it twice in as many games. Walker finished his 17-point, 11-rebound game against the Golden Griffins with a game- and season-high 12 boards versus Rider.

Walker’s 11 defensive rebounds were the most this season by any Loyola player.

Cormier Back In Action

Dylon Cormier returned to game action on Friday night after missing the Greyhounds’ contest at Canisius with an ankle injury. Cormier, who was limited to 11 minutes off the bench at Niagara, came off the bench against Rider and finished with 12 points on 4-of-8 shooting.

Cormier played 28 minutes against the Broncs and also had a game-high four steals.

First-Half Defense

Loyola forced 12 Rider turnovers and held the Broncs to 3-of-23 (.130) from the field in the first half on Friday night. The Greyhounds used an 18-0 run to take a 24-5 lead with just under nine minutes to play before the break.

During the 7-minute, 6-second stretch of play, Rider was 0-of-8 from the field, went without an offensive rebound and had six turnovers.

Leading Scorers During Last Five

During the stretch of five games in which Loyola has held opponents to 57 or fewer points, the Greyhounds have held the opposing teams’ leading scorers under the season averages entering the game.

Loyola held Chris Prescott (Saint Peter’s) and O.D. Anosike (Siena) to less than a point under their previous averages. Since they, the Greyhounds limited Juan’ya Green (Niagara) to 14, more than three under his average, Harold Washington (Canisius) nine short of his 17+ average and Jeff Jones (Rider) to seven fewer than his 13+ mark.

Fastest To 17

Loyola’s win over Rider was the Greyhounds’ 17th of the season, marking their fastest path to 17 victories since joining Division I for the 1981-1982 season. The Greyhounds’ arrival at 17 wins came by a wide margin over the previous best.

The 2006-2007  and 2007-2008 squads, set the previous standard, reaching 17 wins in 29 games, seven more than this year’s team.

Through 22

Loyola’s 17-5 start through its first 22 games of the season ranks is tied for the third-best start during that many games in program history. The start is the best since 1947-1948 when “Lefty” Reitz’s team opened its season with the same record through 21.

The best start through 21 games came in 1940-1941 when another Reitz-coached team entered the Mason-Dixon Conference Championship with an 18-3 record. That Loyola team defeated Mount St. Mary’s in the semifinals before losing to Western Maryland (now McDaniel) in the title game.

Good MAAC Start

With wins in 10 of its first 12 Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference games this season, Loyola is off to its best start in league play since joining the league in 1989-1990. The Greyhounds’ previous best MAAC starts were 9-3 in both 2006-2007 and 2007-2008.

Olson’s January, Continued

After a stretch of not scoring in double figures for the last three games of December and the first two in January, Robert Olson was the Greyhounds’ leading scorer during the first month of the new calendar year, averaging 13.8. He continued his stretch of scoring with 14 against Rider.

In Loyola’s last eight games, a stretch in which the Greyhounds are 7-1, Olson has averaged a team-best 15.1 points per game.

During those eight games, his low total is 11, coming last Friday at Niagara. He is shooting .532 from the field (42-of-79) and a more impressive .500 (25-of-50) from 3-point range.

Olson has made at least two 3-pointers in each of the seven games and has three or more in all but two (at Niagara, Rider).

Etherly’s Last Eight

Erik Etherly continued his solid play of late with a game-high 15 points against Rider. The game against the Broncs marked the fifth time in the Greyhounds’ last seven that he has scored 15 or more points, and it raised his eight-game scoring average to 14.8 points.

Etherly also has averaged 7.4 rebounds, as well, during the stretch that dates back to the Greyhounds’ first meeting with Canisius on January 7.

The junior forward finished last Sunday’s game against Saint Peter’s with 19 points, eight rebounds and two blocked shots, all game highs. He also was 9-of-12 from the free-throw line, matching his season-best for free throws made.

Last Time Out

Rider was within a point, 6-5, after a Jonathon Thompson three less than three minutes in before Loyola went on an 18-0 run that turned into a stretch that the Greyhounds outscored the Broncs, 33-7 to end the half.

The Broncs came out quickly in the second half, scoring the first 11 points and 15 of the first 16. Loyola, however, quickly stamped out the run, going back up by 20 with 9:35 to play.

Buffalo Two-Step

The Greyhounds completed a feat they have never accomplished last weekend, sweeping Niagara and Canisius on the road. Since joining the MAAC in 1989-1990, the best Loyola fared on the Western New York roadtrip was a split of the two teams.

January Success

Loyola finished the month of January with a 7-2 record for the second year in a row, duplicating the effort the 2010-2011 squad put together after the calendar flipped.

Including this year, Loyola is 39-19 (.672) during the year’s first month over the last six seasons. The 2006-2007 team set the standard with an 8-2 (.800) record, and the 2007-2008 and 2008-2009 sides followed with 7-3 (.700) marks. The 2009-2010 team slid to 3-7 (.300) before last year’s team experienced success again.

During Jimmy Patsos’ eight seasons at Loyola, the Greyhounds are 45-33 (.577) during January.

Double-Double For Walker

Shane Walker led all players with 17 points and 11 rebounds in Sunday’s win at Canisius, his first double-double of the season and seventh of his career.

Walker scored 11 points in the first half and also had six offensive rebounds during the game, the most by any Loyola player this season. He was 5-of-6 from the free-throw line, as well.

Defense As Good Or Better

While Walker’s contributions on the boards and offense were solid, Shane Walker’s defense against Canisius was even better.

Walker finished the game with five blocked shots and altered several more with his presence in the post. The five blocks were the most this season by a Loyola player and just one off Walker’s previous career high of six that came on January 15, 2010, at Marist.

Winbush Continues Contributions As Starter

Anthony Winbush got his fifth start of the season Sunday at Canisius in place of the injured Dylon Cormier, and Winbush made his presence known in several areas.

He finished the game with six rebounds, four offensive, and had a season-high five steals, one off his career high of six which came in a December 2009 victory at Indiana. His defensive versatility was also critical as Canisius started four guards.

During Loyola’s modest four-game winning streak, Winbush has averaged 5.3 points and 4.5 rebounds per game. He also has averages of 1.8 assists and steals per game.

Assists All-Around

Loyola finished Sunday’s game with 18 assists, tying its season-high set earlier this year against Florida Gulf Coast and when Canisius played in Baltimore. All five starters had two or more assists, and three had four-plus: Erik Etherly (5), Robert Olson and R.J. Williams (4), Shane Walker (3) and Anthony Winbush (2).

Williams’ Solid Weekend

Freshman point guard R.J. Williams put together one of his better weekends of the season, by averaging 7.5 points, 5.5 assists and just 1.5 turnovers in the victories over Niagara and Canisius.

Williams scored eight points and had a career-best seven assists at Niagara, and he followed that by scoring seven and dishing out four helpers against the Golden Griffins.

Bracketbuster Opponent Named

Loyola learned Monday that it will host Boston University of the America East Conference in its sixth appearance in the Sears’ Bracketbuster Event. The Greyhounds and Terriers will play Sunday, February 19, at 12 noon in Reitz Arena.

Sharper Shooting

Loyola recorded its second-best shooting performance of the season at Niagara, finishing the game 21-of-40, a 52.5-percent clip. The number was buoyed significantly by an 11-of-16, 68.8-percent, mark in the second half.

The Greyhounds’ second-half numbers represented their best 20 minutes of the season. Meanwhile, Loyola made 80-percent (24-of-30) of its free throws, as well, on Friday night, their best free-throw shooting performance of the season.

FG Percentage Getting It Done

While not the most glamorous mark in the box score, Loyola is 14-0 this season when it shoots 41.3-percent or better from the field. The Greyhounds have made less than 44-percent of their shots and won seven times this season.

As of Monday, the Greyhounds ranked 234th out of 338 teams in NCAA Division I with a .420 field goal percentage, and they are one of just two teams (joining Robert Morris) to have 16 or more wins and rank 225 or higher in the category.

Tied For Second In Road Wins

As of the beginning of the week, Loyola’s nine road wins had them tied for second in all of NCAA Division I for victories away from its home court.

Wagner leads the way with 10, while the Greyhounds are tied with Murray State, Harvard, Iona and Cleveland State.

Olson Scores In Bunches

Robert Olson scored seven points in a 23-second stretch versus Fairfield, 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.

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.

With five blocks against Canisius, Walker now has 124 blocks in his career and is all alone in second place. Brian Carroll (1997-2001) holds the school record with 213.

Everyone On The Offensive Boards

Loyola leads the MAAC in offensive rebounding as a team, averaging 14.1, more than a full rebound more per game that second-place Canisius (13.0).

Despite the team ranking, no Greyhounds player is higher than seventh in the conference in offensive rebounds per game. Erik Etherly is seventh with 2.5, while Justin Drummond is tied for 12th with 2.2, just ahead of teammate Dylon Cormier in 15th.

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

Thievery

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 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)
at 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)
at Siena 13-0; 4:27 0-2, 19:28 (1) 13-2; 15:35 (1)
at The Mount 9-0, 1:55 24-26, 1:59 (1) 33-26, :04 (1)
Canisius 18-4, 10:14 57-53, 10:14 (2) 75-57, 2:11 (2)
at Fairfield 36-21, 16:42 30-45, 16:42 (2) 66-63, Final
Siena 22-2, 7:36 40-47, 10:35 (2) 62-49, 2:49 (2)
Saint Peter’s 20-5, 8:13 15-20, 8:55 (1) 35-25, :48 (1)
at Niagara 15-2, 5:42 44-46, 7:48 (2) 59-48, 1:58 (2)
at Canisius 24-2, 12:04 16-22, 8:02 (1) 40-24, 15:58 (2)
Rider 18-0, 8:06 6-5, 16:50 (1) 24-5, 8:55 (2)

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. 115 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 are back home next weekend to host a pair of MAAC games on the ESPN family of networks. Friday’s contest against Iona at 7 o’clock will be televised on ESPNU, and the Sunday 4 o’clock battle versus Fairfield will be aired on ESPN3. Both of those games are also doubleheaders with the Loyola women hosting Iona and Fairfield at 4 p.m. and 12 noon, respectively.

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