Mount St. Mary's

November 13, 1998|By Christian Ewell

Coach: Jim Phelan, 45th season at Mount St. Mary's (785-428).

Affiliation: Northeast Conference.

1997-98 record: 13-15 overall, 8-8 in NEC.

Radio: WXTR (820 AM), WMTB (89.9 FM).

Arena: Knott Arena (3,196).

Starters lost: Two.

Tickets: $11 courtside, $8 lower-level reserved, $5 general admission. Call 800-628-2722.

Best home game: UMBC, Jan. 11. The Mountaineers are used to beating the Retrievers, up 23-13 in the series. It just has more meaning this season.

Best visiting player: Donnie Carr, La Salle, Nov. 14. In his first college game at Knott Arena, Carr scored 36 points and had six rebounds.

Outlook: Two unexpected gifts have boosted the Mount to its current status as favorite to win the NEC. The first occurred when 6-foot-10 center Melvin Whitaker -- imprisoned for a slashing incident at the University of Virginia -- signed on with the Mountaineers. Whitaker, a high school All-American, will help fill the frontcourt void left with the graduation of Gerben Van Dorpe and Mike Brown. The NCAA granted 6-8 forward Newton Gayle an extra year of eligibility after he averaged 7.8 points and 5.5 rebounds in '97-98, meaning Phelan will have some inside play until Whitaker debuts at Georgia Tech on Dec. 30. Point guard Gregory Harris (15.5 ppg, 5.5 apg) returns to lead the backcourt.

Around the league: St. Francis, N.Y., has four starters returning from last year's 15-12 squad. Fairleigh Dickinson scared Connecticut in the first round of the NCAAs, but lost all of its starters.

Returning players

Name -- Robert Balgac

Yr. -- Jr.

Ht. -- 6-8

Wt. -- 202

Pos. -- F/G

Fast breaks -- Able to do a bit of everything.

Name -- Eric Bethel

Yr. -- Sr.

Ht. -- 6-0

Wt. -- 170

Pos. -- G

Fast breaks -- Team's main outside threat.

@Name -- Newton Gayle

Yr. -- Sr.

Ht. -- 6-8

Wt. -- 235

Pos. -- F

Fast breaks -- Knee injury grounds him for 1-3 weeks.

Name -- Jason Grace

Yr. -- So.

Ht. -- 6-3

Wt. -- 185

Pos. -- G

Fast breaks -- Highest 3-point pct. last year (.500).

Name -- Gregory Harris

Yr. -- Jr.

Ht. -- 6-3

Wt. -- 195

Pos. -- G

Fast breaks -- Leading returner (15.5 ppg, 156 assists).

Name -- Tony Hayden

Yr. -- Sr.

Ht. -- 6-5

Wt. -- 210

Pos. -- F

Fast breaks -- Battling with Balgac for small forward spot.

Name -- Aaron Herbert

Yr. -- So.

Ht. -- 5-10

Wt. -- 156

Pos. -- G

Fast breaks -- Starting over after injury in '97-98.

Name -- Stephen Moore

Yr. -- So.

Ht. -- 6-0

Wt. -- 165

Pos. -- G

Fast breaks -- Not likely to see much time.

Name -- Konata Springer

Yr. -- Sr.

Ht. -- 6-10

Wt. -- 245

Pos. -- C

Fast breaks -- Transfer may start in early season.

Newcomers

Name -- Jerry Lloyd

Yr. -- Fr.

Ht. -- 5-11

Wt. -- 165

Pos. -- G

Fast breaks -- Reputed scorer, will back up Harris.

Name -- Esmond Marvray

Yr. -- Fr.

Ht. -- 6-1

Wt. -- 180

Pos. -- G

Fast breaks -- Walk-on not playing much.

Name -- Melvin Whitaker

Yr. -- Fr.

Ht. -- 6-10

Wt. -- 230

Pos. -- C

Fast breaks -- Rust factor key after two-year layoff.

Name -- Terrence Wilson

Yr. -- Fr.

Ht. -- 6-8

Wt. -- 180

Pos. -- F

Fast breaks -- Most promising freshman.

Pub Date: 11/13/98

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