Stanford rebounds to fight off GW No. 6 Cardinal rally after back-to-back losses; Rogers, King struggle; BB&T; Classic notebook


WASHINGTON -- After losing to Maryland in a Final Four-type atmosphere on Sunday, it appeared Stanford suffered a bit of a letdown against George Washington yesterday. But the sixth-ranked Cardinal finally took over in the second half of yesterday's 70-56 win in the consolation game of the BB&T; Classic.

"Every one is going to be hard," said Stanford coach Mike Montgomery, whose 5-2 team had lost two straight before the win over the Colonials. "George Washington came out very aggressive and made a decision to overplay. They weren't going to give us anything for free inside."

The result was a 35-15 advantage in free-throw attempts for Stanford, and early foul trouble for the George Washington front line. Still the Colonials (3-3) trailed by just four points at the half, and were within 46-44 after two free throws by Yegor Mescheriakov with 12: 49 left.

But Stanford junior forward Mike Madsen (14 points) scored the final six points of a 16-6 run that gave the Cardinal a 61-50 lead and put the game away. Four Stanford players scored in double figures after back-to-back losses (and cross country flights) against North Carolina in the Preseason NIT championship at Madison Square Garden and Maryland.

"They were bigger, stronger and deeper," said first-year George Washington coach Tom Penders. "Stanford's been there before. They know how to put away games, and they did."

Baltimore pair struggles

The BB&T; Classic proved to be tough going for George Washington's Baltimore backcourt of Shawnta Rogers and Mike King. The duo, both products of Lake Clifton High School, shot a combined 9-for-29 (31.0 percent) from the field: King missed 10 of 14 shots, and Rogers missed 10 of 15 shots.

Combined with Sunday's loss against DePaul, the two shot a combined 18-for-62 for the tournament (29.0 percent). Rogers, who needs 18 assists to become George Washington's all-time leader, was an All-Atlantic 10 first-team member last season; King, a sophomore, was named to the third team last year.

"It's early in the season," said Rogers, who had four three-pointers. "We have a lot of games left."

Public schools of swish

DePaul's freshman class was rated among the best in the nation, and the three new recruits have made an immediate impact in the resurgence of the Blue Demons.

The three freshmen of note are forward Quentin Richardson (17.0 points per game going into last night), center Lance Williams (15.2) and forward Bobby Simmons (13.8).

The three, all products of Chicago Public Schools, make up the team's top three scorers. The last time DePaul started at least three Chicago Public Schools starters in the same season was 1981-82 (Terry Cummings, Skip Dillard and Bernard Randolph). That team finished 26-2.

Fouls don't foil Francis

Foul trouble in the first half last night looked like it might cost Steve Francis a shot at the tournament's Most Valuable Player.

Francis scored just four points in the first half, limited to just 11 minutes after picking up three fouls. But he finished the game with 14 points and, combined with his career-high 24-point effort against Stanford on Sunday, he earned the MVP award.

The all-tournament team: Maryland's Terence Morris, Stanford's Madsen, DePaul's Richardson (28 points last night) and George Washington's Mescheriakov.

Et cetera

Before last night, Maryland and DePaul had met just once, a 92-74 Terps win in the 1976-77 season. Gary Williams' coaching record against DePaul's Pat Kennedy, the former coach of Florida State, is now 8-5. Two-day attendance of 36,788 is a tournament record.

Pub Date: 12/08/98

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