Catholic clinches regular-season conference title
WASHINGTON - Matt Hilleary had 12 points and a game-high 10 rebounds, and Will Morley scored 14 points to lead the No. 16 Catholic University men's basketball team to a 66-64 victory against St. Mary's (Md.) in CAC action at DuFour Center on Saturday.
The win gives the Cardinals the CAC regular season title for a fourth consecutive year - including a tie in 1998-99 - and top seed in the CAC Tournament. CUA (19-5, 11-3 CAC) will host Gallaudet, and second-seeded St. Mary's (17-7, 10-4) will host Goucher, both on Tuesday night. Game times have not been announced.
Harvey Davis led the Seahawks with a game-high 16 points and nine rebounds. Matt Conklin who missed a layup on a baseline drive with one second left that could have tied the contest, had 14 points and four steals. Sheldon Taylor added 10 points and seven rebounds.
Morley hit two free throws and added a layup with 2:42 left to give the Cardinals a 65-62 lead. Brandon Jones answered with his fourth consecutive free throw to bring St. Mary's within 65-64 with 1:45 to go. After Jones misfired on a jumper with under a minute remaining, CUA was forced to call timeout to avoid a backcourt violation. The Cardinals' Pat Maloney missed a layup, but Tim Judge tracked down the long rebound and Maloney hit the second of two free throws with nine seconds left for the final margin.
The Seahawks called timeout and got the ball to Conklin for the final shot. The ball went off the backboard and almost dropped in, but fell to Judge under the basket as the horn sounded. It was CUA's 16th win against St. Mary's in its last 17 games. The Cardinals led 46-36 early in the second half, but the Seahawks responded with a 17-7 run to tie the game at 53 with 7:52 to play.
Maloney, Judge, Andy Rice, Mike Hartman and Kurt Zeisler were playing their final regular season home game. The class of 2001 improved to 91-21 (81.3%) since the start of the 1997-98 season. With one more victory, CUA will have won at least 20 games for a fourth consecutive year.