For St. Mary's, a feast of 3-pointers

January 26, 1994|By Gary Lambrecht | Gary Lambrecht,Staff Writer

Do you think the St. Mary's College men's basketball team is glad the NCAA adopted the three-point shot?

The Seahawks are 8-6, and with a 3-1 record in the Capital Athletic Conference, they have a shot at winning a title in that Division III league. No matter what they accomplish for the rest of the season, though, the Seahawks will be hard-pressed to top their performance last week against Bard (N.Y) College.

It wasn't much of a contest, as the Seahawks built a 59-22 halftime lead, then finished off Bard, 118-57. But it was a game for the record book.

St. Mary's set an NCAA record when each of its 11 players made at least one three-point basket. The old Division III mark was eight. The old overall mark was 10, set by Division II Troy State.

The Seahawks made 25 of 50 three-point attempts, nearly catching the Division III record of 27 three-pointers, set by Catholic University in 1991. Seven St. Mary's players scored in double figures, and no one scored 20 points.

The Seahawks average 82.1 points, largely on the strength of their shooting beyond the arc. They average 10.9 three-pointers, which ranks them sixth among Division III teams. They are shooting 39.7 percent from three-point range, having made 153 of 385.

Senior forward Chris Delisi leads the team with a 17.3-point average, and Delisi, who recently passed the 1,000-point career mark, does much of his damage inside. Freshman guard Steve Michelotti leads the outside shooters with a 13.6-point average, mainly on 50.5 percent three-point shooting. Senior guard Mike Rudolph (Loyola) has made 29 of 61 three-pointers (47.5 percent).

Unbeaten and still favored

The women's basketball team at Mount St. Mary's started the season as a heavy favorite to repeat as Northeast Conference champion. The Mountaineers have done nothing to alter that status.

Saturday, against what figures to be their toughest NEC competition, the Mountaineers turned back a spirited upset attempt by Rider, pulling away to an 86-71 victory. The game was tied at 63 with nine minutes left before Mount St. Mary's turned up its defensive pressure and ended the suspense.

Excellent defense has been the mainstay of the Mountaineers (12-2), who are 8-0 against the NEC. Since going to more #F trapping and full-court pressure at the beginning of their conference schedule, the Mountaineers are forcing 21 turnovers a game and holding opponents to 35 percent shooting. Last month, they held Robert Morris to two field goals in a half. Saturday, they held Rider to 25 percent shooting in the second half.

Mount St. Mary's also is getting superb scoring distribution. Junior forward Susie Rowlyk (14.5 points, 6.5 rebounds) may be the top player, but seven players have led Mount St. Mary's in scoring this season.

Mount St. Mary's has won 14 straight against the NEC.

Frederick CC star

Frederick Community College (10-7), which competes at the Division II level, is having a pretty ordinary basketball season, although sophomore Keith Thompson (Lake Clifton) is having an extraordinary winter.

Thompson, a 6-foot-2 guard, leads Division II scorers with a 33.2-point average. He has made 54 percent of his attempts, has led Frederick in scoring in every game and has scored at least 30 points in 14 of 17 games. Thompson also averages 4.5 rebounds, 3.1 steals and 2.7 assists.

Retrievers' woes

The season grows messier for the UMBC (3-11, 2-4) men's basketball team. Last week, senior guard Skip Saunders injured his knee after taking a spill on the ice and has not played since.

Then, Kevin Bellinger, Spencer Ferguson and Matt Butts were suspended from Monday night's game at Campbell for unspecified team policy violations. The Retrievers, despite being undermanned, gave Campbell all it could handle before falling, 77-67.

On the bright side, Saunders, who suffered strained ligaments, could be back as early as next week. He traveled with the team to Campbell and is running to get the knee back in playing shape.

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