Saturday, December 31, 2011

Excited to get back to ARCC today

First off apologies to all of you who have come to expect more consistent posting out of this site.

Secondly, I'd like to congratulate my father, a Mount graduate, for selling his accounting practice of 35 years. He has worked so very hard through the years to build the firm. I'm extremely proud of what he has accomplished and grateful for the opportunity to work with two of my closest business associates in continuing the firm. My father will be still be active in the firm, but his hours can be reduced and allow him to spend more time traveling and playing golf. Something that he greatly deserves. We're all excited for the changes.

Finally, I haven't seen the Mount play since the loss to Loyola back in mid-December. And with things going the way they were going, there wasn't much to post, especially when I didn't have a personal view to put a spin on it.

I was extremely glad to see the Mount get a good win against American on Thursday. But I was very disappointed in the starting time. With the students away on break, I can't see how that helps to increase attendance. Anyway it was great to see the game end up on the right side of the ledger - and it's always nice to beat American and a Patriot League team.

As we draw to a close of the non-conference season today, I think it has become extremely obvious that this team is going to have to work extremely hard for everything they get and that lapses during games are going to be tough to overcome. Hoping that the mistakes of the early parts of the season have helped the players grow and that 2012 - starting at 3pm this afternoon, brings continued improvement.

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Monday, December 12, 2011

Saturday, December 10, 2011

It's Loyola

A long time ago when they hired Jim Phelan at the Mount, they told him one thing.

Beat Loyola.

That is the type of rivalry that today's game is. And despite the disappointing start to the season, the play of the Mountaineers in recent days has made me believe that today's renewal of that rivalry may well be one of the more entertaining games we've seen at the Knott in recent years.

Couple that with the fact that the Greyhounds enter on a bit of a high. They haven't lost since opening night, when they traveled to ACC Country and almost got a win in Winston-Salem against the Demon Deacons.

But since then the Hounds have been perfect. Rolling up seven straight wins, including Wednesday night's impressive 10-point defeat of George Washington and a MAAC win last weekend over Siena. The same Siena squad that dropped this Mount bunch in the home opener in November. It's the best start for the school in their Division I history.

This will be the 167th meeting between the two schools and you can be certain that the Green and Gray will bring a few fans with them from Baltimore for the encounter. Those that don't get to the game can watch on MASN or YES at 2pm. Johnny Holliday and former Georgetown coach Craig Esherick will detail the action.

Dylon Cormier leads the Hounds in scoring. He's at 18.3 for a team that averages four players in double figures and plays an up tempo style that sees them score 70+ per night. Erik Etherly, Shane Walker, and Justin Drummond are also in double figures for Jimmy Patsos' crew.

The Mount, as we all know, is incredibly balanced. A different guy seems to be the leading scorer each night. Julian Norfleet made four trifectas in the narrow defeat to Maryland (where Patsos was an assistant under Gary Williams) on Wednesday night and leads the Mount with 11.0 per game. Raven Barber has been in double figures the last three games and freshman Kelvin Parker has been a consistent offensive threat since moving into the starting lineup.

The Mount has won 96 of the previous 166 encounters with Loyola. It is in search of 97 today as it looks to end a six-game losing streak.

Let's get it done.




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Thursday, December 08, 2011

From the Washington Times

Maryland slips past Mount St. Mary's for 77-74 win - Washington Times:

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Terrapin Station

Maryland Holds Off Mount Saint Mary's, 77-74 - Terrapin Station - A Maryland Terrapins Fan Site - News, Blogs, Opinion and more.:

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Recap of Michigan State's win over Central

MSU basketball: Sluggish Spartans win, move on | Lansing State Journal | lansingstatejournal.com:

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Knoche: CSN Washington

Knoche: Terps squeeze past Mount St. Mary's:

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A ’Neer disaster - Diamondback Online

A ’Neer disaster - Sports - The Diamondback - University of Maryland:

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From Baltimore Sun's Jeff Barker

Maryland has to scramble to beat Mount St. Mary's, 77-74 - herald-mail.com:

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Washington Post Game Story

Maryland basketball holds on to beat Mount St. Mary’s - The Washington Post:

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Wednesday, December 07, 2011

The AP Wrap Up

Maryland squeezes past Mount St. Mary's 77-74 | Deseret News:

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That was fun...but just not enough

Maryland needed some last minute heroics from Terrell Stoglin and some courageous calls from the referees to down our Mounties 77-74 at the Comcast Center on Wednesday night. But that's why they call it a guarantee game, if you're the team below the red line you're guaranteed to get hosed on some calls.

But give Stoglin and the Terrapins credit. After squandering a 16 point lead the Terps did battle back at the end and some clutch shots from Stoglin with defender Josh Castellanos all over him at times made the difference. Stoglin had 23 in the victory for Maryland.

The Mount kept it close with some serious long range consistency. The Mount made 11-of-21 threes in the game but when it trailed by three late, it went inside for a Danny Thompson to close the gap to one with 2.3 seconds left. The Mount had nearly taken the lead on its previous possession, but a huge blocked shot of a Julian Norfleet layup, after Norfleet appeared clear in the lane took away one chance. Danny Thompson's follow was no good and the Mount was forced to foul. Mychal Parker, who was a 44% free throw shooter entering the contest, made both to stretch the lead to 2.

Norfleet led the Mount with 18 (4 3's), while Castellanos had 15 (3 3's) and Kelvin Parker 14 (2 3's). Raven Barber came off the bench to score double digits for the third straight game with 12.

The Catholic Clash is up next on Saturday afternoon at the Knott Arena as the Mount hosts 7-1 Loyola. Be loud Mount fans. Real loud.

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Down at the Half on the Road

The Mount trails Maryland by 13 at the half. Josh Castellanos leads five Mountaineer scores with 8 as the Mount plays its first game after Lamar Trice was dismissed from the team earlier today.

The Mount trails 45-32 and has made 6-of-9 three pointers. Unfortunately, the Mount has not had an answer inside for the Terrapins who have scored point after point in the paint.

Terrell Stoglin has 13 points for the Terps while Ashton Pankey has come off the bench to add 9.

A 20-10 run over about an eight minute span midway through the first half gave the Terps some seperation after the Mount held things close early.

Kelvin Parker, the freshman from York PA, has 7 points on 3-of-3 shooting. He scored the first two points of the game for the Mount and the final three before halftime.

Raven Barber has come off the bench to tally 6 points and grab 3 rebounds including two on the offensive end.

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Monmouth Beat Navy

Monmouth Basketball Earns First Win of Season - Long Branch, NJ Patch:

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Weekend Sports: Basketball Reigns Supreme - The Local – Fort-Greene Blog - NYTimes.com

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Mount St. Mary's, Md. Mountaineers @ Maryland Terrapins GameThread, Dec 7, 2011 8:00 PM EST - Testudo Times

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Mount St. Mary's Vs. Maryland: Terps Host Mountaineers At Comcast Center - SB Nation DC

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Senior Lamar Trice dismissed

Senior Lamar Trice, already on a tight rope after a five-game early season suspension, has been dismissed from the Mount basketball team for what University officials say is a violation of team rules.

The Mount, 1-6, plays at Maryland tonight in its first game following the full time dismissal. Trice averaged 13 points a game last season to lead the Mount in scoring.

Good Riddance.

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Lipinski scores 20; Still Mount Target?

Roundup: No. 4 Dunbar boys win basketball opener - baltimoresun.com:

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MSU men's basketball tipoff: Spartans vs. Central Connecticut St. | Lansing State Journal | lansingstatejournal.com

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Maryland basketball easing into ACC play | Washington Examiner

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Stoglin doing it all so far for Terps - Sports - The Diamondback - University of Maryland

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Friday, December 02, 2011

The Mount loses; We all suffer

I make no bones about it. This blog is about sports from the perspective of a fan. No doubt I have a journalistic background, and no doubt some of the things I've done as a journalist have contributed to what I write here today. But still this blog is about my feelings as a fan.

I truly don't think I've ever rooted for a team longer or harder than I have for the Mount. And I know that despite all the sad and troubling things going on at my own alma mater right now, there is nothing in the sports world that pulls at my heartstrings like the Mount.

That's why last night, and for that matter the last few weeks and maybe even the end of last season have been so upsetting to me. The bottom line is this is not a very good basketball team right now. There isn't a ton of talent. Still they wear the blue and white and I like the guys a whole lot. They play hard and they give the effort that you want to see. Basketballstate.com describes the Mount in its team profile as has difficulty scoring baskets and defensively challenged. That's not a good combination.

It's tough right now and it's certainly easy to point figures when things are going well. There are a slew of reasons. Reasons or excuses, I guess.

When things like this go wrong as fans we tend to blame the coach. And no doubt Robert Burke has to be accountable for his actions and the play of his team. But we also need to give him time to craft to his program. As far as I'm concerned this freshman class is his real first recruiting effort - and the abilities of Kelvin Parker, Xavier Owens, Chad Holley and Taylor Danaher will fully be measured in the years to come. It's tough to win at this level with freshman.

Josh Castellanos and Julian Norfleet were both pleasant surprises in their first year last season. But both have had slow starts compared to our expectations this season.

Burke came into a tough situation - just about all the weapons were departing and the cupboards were starting to look a little bare. Graduation took a few more after last season and injuries and defections have made it even more difficult at the start of this year.

I've heard the Burke complaints. I can't argue with some of them. He obviously has a short hook - and I'm concerned about how that plays with some of the players who lack confidence right now. There also are a lot more combinations being floated around then I normally like to see. In addition, the decision to play Julian Norfleet as the lead guard last night seemed a bit odd to me. Norfleet filled in adequately at Navy and might have reduced the turnovers from that slot. But on a team that struggles so much offensively, it seemed like an odd choice to take away your best offensive option.

Still its our jobs as fans to stay the course and root for the team and the coaches that are out there. And I'm hopeful that the right things were said in the 40-minute post game chat session last night to solve some of the issues.

The defending league champ is coming to Mount St. Mary's on Saturday night. Truely it has the makings of something that could be ugly.

But I'm hoping you'll be there with me to cheer on our team. Because it's at times like these when things get tough that we as fans are needed the most. Let's keep this positive and get things going forward again.


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LIU Wins Over NEC Rival Wagner College - The Local – Fort-Greene Blog - NYTimes.com

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College Basketball: Mount men continue to struggle - The Frederick News-Post Online

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Thursday, December 01, 2011

St. Francis victorious in ARCC

Ben Mockford made five of St. Francis (NY)'s ten three-pointers as the Terriers won 64-54 at the Knott Arena in the NEC opener for both teams.

Mockford led the Terriers who led from start to finish with 19 points, Stefan Perunicic had 14 for the winners.

Kelvin Parker had a career high 16 for the Mount in his first start at home. Raven Barber had 11 in 22 minutes, while Julian Norfleet scored 11 as well.

The Mount was an atrocious 4-of-15 from the charity stripe.

The Mount faces defending NEC champ Long Island on Saturday night.

I'll have more thoughts from tonight's game some time tomorrow after I digest it all.

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The NEC starts tonight

Wagner College men's basketball gears up for NEC opener | SILive.com:

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