Papageorge's Three Keeps Cards
Fumai scores 24 in the contest
WASHINGTON - The Catholic University men's basketball team (5-0, 1-0 CAC) battled back from a halftime deficit to get its first win in conference play and stay undefeated for the season Wednesday night at the DuFour Center. CUA beat the St. Mary's (Md.) Seahawks (1-3, 0-1 CAC) 67-62 on the first day of Capital Athletic Conference play. Steve Papageorge (Annandale, Va./Falls Church) hit a three-pointer with 12 seconds left to give the Cards the lead and the eventual victory.
Both teams had trouble adjusting to the gym as the Cards shot a dismal 28 percent in the first half. With the score tied 9-7 in favor of the Seahawks five minutes in, both teams had trouble finding the bottom of the net. After four scoreless minutes a three by Mike Smelkinson broke the ice.
CUA tied it up at 7:42 thanks to a free throw by Ryan Jones (Coudersport, Pa./Coudersport) but couldn't take over the lead looking at a 28-27 halftime score in favor of St. Mary's. Scott Fumai (Rockville, Md./Good Counsel) led the Cards with 10 points and Pat Dwyer (Williamsburg, Va./Walsingham Academy) added eight. The Cardinals were outrebounded in the first 26-20.
After scoring no points in the first half, Papageorge took over in the second going 3-5 from beyond the arc. A Dwyer layup off of the opening play gave CUA its first lead of the game but the Seahawks quickly answered going up by as much as seven early in the half. Catholic University chipped away at the lead and took over with six minutes left on a jumper by Mike Wasilenko (Washington Township, N.J./Don Bosco Prep).
Never relinquishing the lead, the Cards were up by as much as seven with 1:06 to go but a three-pointer and a layup from the Seahawks put them right back in the game. Dan Engelstad added two free throws off a missed CUA layup and foul to tie it up with 15 second to go.
Taking the ball at midcourt after a timeout, the Cards wasted no time as the inbounder, Wasilenko, hit Papageorge in the corner and the senior hit the three under pressure to go up 66-62. On their final trip down the court the Seahawks turned it over and were forced to foul giving the Cardinals the 67-62 win.
Fumai ended with 24 points and eight rebounds, Dwyer posted his third double-double of the season with 14 points and 10 rebounds. Papageorge had 11 points all coming in the second half as well as three rebounds. Engelstad led the Seahawks with 17. CUA was outrebounded 41-35 but had only 10 turnovers to SMC's 15.
CUA is back with another doubleheader on Saturday when the Cardinals will take on the Goucher Gophers at the DuFour Center. The CAC-matchup is scheduled to begin at 4:00 p.m.