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Flat Loyola bounced by Manhattan, 84-74; Still winless in MAAC, 'Hounds leashed by zone


With an opportunity to climb out of the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference basement last night, Loyola only dug itself in deeper.

Flat from the outset, the Greyhounds never solved Manhattan's zone defense, got burned when they double-teamed and dropped an 84-74 decision before a subdued Reitz Arena crowd of 684.

Manhattan (2-8, 1-2) used its best performance of the season to leapfrog over Loyola (5-6, 0-4), a team it had lost to six consecutive times.

"We made the plays tonight," said Jaspers coach John Leonard. "I told the team the last 10 days they have been coming together in all facets, and it showed."

"We've had a tough stretch," said Hagerstown native Phil "Boo" Lane (St. Maria Goretti), who had 10 points and seven assists for Manhattan. "But we're starting to jell not only on the court, but off."

The Jaspers' game plan was to shut off Loyola's big men, particularly Roderick Platt, who did not score for the first 29 minutes and wound up with only seven points. That forced the Greyhounds to take most of their shots from the perimeter, and Greyhounds guards Jason Rowe and Damien Jenifer shot a combined 9-for-24 from the field.

"We wanted to contain J. Rowe and the big fellow [Platt]," said Lane. "We really didn't let the ball inside much. He got a couple baskets later in the game, but that was it," he said, referring to Platt.

Loyola last led at 7-6 and was tied at 13 before the Jaspers unleashed streaks of 7-0 and 19-4 and soared ahead by 32-17.

Nothing changed much after the break as Manhattan used its tight zone, crisp passing and ability to beat the Greyhounds to the punch in transition to lead by 20 points twice, at 49-29 and 51-31.

"It's no secret we're struggling against zones and not doing a good job making shots from outside," said Greyhounds coach Dino Gaudio, whose team made only four of 20 from three-point range.

"What's frustrating is we need to develop basketball maturity. When things aren't going well offensively, we have to do a good job in other facets of the game."

But the defense wasn't confounding Manhattan, either. Although the Jaspers committed 21 turnovers, they also broke through the Loyola traps for numerous easy baskets and shot 31-for-47 from the field (66 percent).

"We were trying to create some offense off steals, but they did a good job of spreading out and breaking it," said Gaudio, who was particularly upset with the rebounding statistics.

"We preached that all week, about doing a good job on the backboards because they're the top rebounding team in the league. It's not like our kids have anything else to do. School's not in. They're here for three hours a day and with nothing else to concentrate on."

Transfer Ken Kavanagh flourished inside with a perfect 9-for-9 night and scored 29 points for the Jaspers, who broke a four-game losing streak.

"We were making the extra pass, finding the right man, making good decisions," said Leonard. "When we pass up 16-footers to get 10-footers by the right people, we're playing well."

MANHATTAN -- Murray 0-1 0-0 0, Kavanagh 9-9 11-16 29, Brown 10-14 11-16 29, Lane 3-8 4-6 10, Mellish 2-5 4-4 10, Coughlin 2-3 0-0 4, Dye 4-6 1-3 9, Doeker 1-1 0-3 2. Totals 31-47 20-33 84.

LOYOLA -- Carroll 5-7 2-2 12, Strong 3-5 3-4 9, Platt 3-5 1-3 7, Jenifer 3-7 2-2 8, Rowe 6-17 5-7 19, Blosser 0-3 2-2 2, Hurd 4-7 1-2 9, Walker 2-6 0-0 6, Nasiou 0-0 0-0 0, Adams 0-1 0-0 0, Mack 1-1 0-0 2. Totals 27-59 16-22 74.

Halftime--Manhattan, 38-27. 3-point goals--M 2-5 (Mellish 2-5); L 4-20 (Walker 2-5, Rowe 2-10, Adams 0-1, Blosser 0-2, Jenifer 0-2). Rebounds--M 31 (Brown 8); L 24 (Carroll, Platt 5). Assists--M 22 (Lane 7); L 11 (Rowe 7). Total fouls--M 23, L 25. A--684.

Pub Date: 1/07/99

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