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Thursday, February 28, 2002

WOMEN'S BASKETBALL: Tierney, Fitzpatrick give Lehigh, Lafayette their best shots
The Morning Call/ By Don Bostrom
Sophomore forward Colleen Fitzpatrick of Lafayette has the surest shot in the Patriot League. That's why she'll never concede her Leopards (3-24, 1-13) have no shot of upsetting four-time defending league champion Holy Cross (21-6, 12-2) when the Patriot League tournament begins noon Friday at The Show Place Arena in Upper Marlboro, Md. ''We have absolutely nothing to lose,'' Fitzpatrick said. ''All of the pressure is on them. If we all give 110 percent, who knows? Stranger things have happened. I believe the best shot of my career is still to come.''

Tuesday, February 26, 2002

MEN'S BASKETBALL: Burke takes big moment in stride
The Express-Times/ By Paul Sokoloski
His entire college basketball career has been filled with so many big moments for Lafayette that even a 43-point night gets lost on the list of Brian Burke's highlights. He came out of the hospital last year with a new attitude, a new outlook on life, after a punctured lung slowed down his life and nearly took him out of the game. He still had one of the sweetest shots in the Patriot League. When he leaves the Leopards, after four consecutive trips to the Patriot League Tournament, Burke will think back to his freshman year when he scored in the playoffs against Bucknell during a four-point win that sent Lafayette to the NCAA Tournament. "Tim Bieg gave me a pass and I hit a little jumper from eight feet," Burke said with a smile. "That was the first shot I ever made in the championship."

WOMEN'S BASKETBALL: Council has unfinished business
The Express-Times/ By Corky Blake
EASTON - Don't let the Anchorage, Alaska, residency fool you. Samaiyah Council is an East Coast girl at heart. "My mom and dad are from Chester (Pa.)," said the Lafayette College women's basketball senior guard. "My dad managed a Chi-Chi's Restaurant and when I was about three years old we moved from Chester to Salt Lake City and then to Alaska when I was five. My dad likes to travel." Obviously, it's hereditary because Council, upon graduating this spring from Lafayette with a degree in Spanish and Black Studies, wants to test her basketball skills in the women's pro leagues in Europe. First, Council and her Leopard teammates have unfinished business later this week. What better way to distance themselves from a 3-24 season by upsetting No. 1 seed Holy Cross in the first round? Tipoff is noon Friday at The Show Place Arena in Upper Marlboro, Md.

MEN'S BASKETBALL: Unpredictability and Lafayette go hand in hand
The Morning Call/ By Paul Reinhard
To understand exactly how unpredictable things have been this season in Patriot League men's basketball, consider that a preseason poll of coaches and sports information directors tabbed Navy to finish second, Lehigh fourth - with two votes for first - newcomer American sixth and Lafayette seventh. Turns out they had about as much of a clue then as they might have this week in trying to assess the annual league championship tournament, which gets under way for men on Saturday in the Show Place Arena in Upper Marlboro, Md. American is the top seed, but was beaten twice during the regular season by Lafayette, which tied for third. Navy wound up seventh. Lehigh was eighth and lost 11 games in a row before winning Sunday - and also gave American all it wanted, losing twice by a total of nine points. Maybe that's why Lafayette coach Fran O'Hanlon could find justification for including just about everyone when rating the field on Monday.

Monday, February 25, 2002

MEN'S BASKETBALL: Colgate tops 'Pards, teams to do it again in tourney
The Express-Times
If Lafayette is going to make a run at the Patriot League men's basketball championship, the Leopards are going to have to find a way to defeat Colgate. Colgate swept the season series with Lafayette by registering an 85-73 victory Sunday in Hamilton, N.Y. Lafayette finished the regular season with a 14-12 overall record and 8-6 in the league.

Thursday, February 21, 2002

MEN'S BASKETBALL: Burke goes bonkers, tops Tripucka
The Express-Times/ By Corky Blake
EASTON - Classic, simply classic. Brian Burke, playing probably his final game in Kirby Sports Center, put on a shooting exhibition for the ages, and Lafayette needed each and every one of the senior's record-setting 43 points to turn back Lehigh 98-93 Wednesday night in Patriot League men's basketball.

MEN'S BASKETBALL: Burke's game is one for the ages at Lafayette
The Morning Call/ By Paul Reinhard
It is inevitable that someone is going to suggest that Lehigh choked again Wednesday night. Hogwash. To even think such an absurdity is to scoff openly at arguably the greatest individual performance in the 92-year history of basketball at Lafayette College. Wait a minute. Didn't Bobby Mantz score 47 points against Wilkes and 44 against Lehigh in 1958? Right, and those two totals rank No. 1 and No. 2 on the all-time single-game list. But, consider this. The Leopards walloped the Colonels 109-56, the Engineers 83-49. In other words, they didn't need the big center to be anything spectacular. Don't get me wrong. I have no intention of downplaying Mantz's performances. But what Brian Burke did for Lafayette - and to Lehigh - in the final regular-season home game of his career makes those Mantz numbers seem almost average.

WOMEN'S BASKETBALL: Tierney's late layup saves night for Lehigh
The Express-Times/ By Michael Blouse
EASTON - As happy as Sue Troyan was for her Lehigh University women's basketball team, that's how bad she felt for Lafayette counterpart Tammy Smith and her players. The Mountain Hawks seemingly ended their recent struggles Wednesday evening with a 62-60 victory over the arch-rival Leopards before 1,170 fans at Kirby Sports Center.

MEN'S BASKETBALL: Burke's 43 rallies Leopards by Lehigh, 98-93
The Morning Call/ By Andre D. Williams
Never mind the 20-point Lehigh Engineers' lead. The suspicions were heavy that it would not last as long as Brian Burke kept shooting. Distance did not matter, neither did hands swarming in his face. It was Burke's final home game of his Lafayette career before a crowd of 3,124 at the Kirby Sports Center for Wednesday night?s Patriot League thriller against rival Lehigh.

WOMEN'S BASKETBALL: Lehigh women hold off improving 'Pards
The Morning Call/ By Mark Wogenrich
Sue Troyan told Lafayette coach Tammy Smith that she feared Lafayette sat on the brink of a breakthrough. But the brink is a lonely, fickle place to perch. Shaken from their game but not their mission, the Lehigh women rallied from an uneven start to edge the Leopards 62-60 at Kirby Sports Center on Wednesday.

Wednesday, February 20, 2002

MEN'S & WOMEN'S BASKETBALL: Blake: Patriot League teams jockey for position
The Express-Times/ By Corky Blake
Only two games remain for each Patriot League basketball team, and a lot can happen between now and late Sunday afternoon. The only sure thing in the men's standings is Lehigh has clinched last place. The Mountain Hawks' first-round opponent in the post-season tournament March 2 at The Showplace Arena in Upper Marlboro, Md., is a mystery at this time. And the only sure thing in the women's standings is Lafayette has clinched last place and will face Holy Cross in the first round on March 1., also at the The Showplace Arena. Here's what could play out in the men's free-for-all this week. If either American or Holy Cross goes 2-0, it will clinch first place. The Eagles, currently in first place at 9-3, meet the 8-4 Crusaders on Saturday in Washington, D.C. Lafayette and Bucknell are tied for third at 7-5. If everything falls in place, the Leopards could find themselves in a tie for first place, as could the Bison.

Sunday, February 17, 2002

At 100, Joe Marhefka is still making waves
The Express-Times/ By Ed Laubach
Whew! Thank goodness, it's over. Today Joe Marhefka, 100 years and one day old, can get on with the rest of his life. Last week was one dizzying goal line plunge for the halfback on Lafayette College's 1921 national championship football squad who never ventured far from campus on Easton's College Hill. First, the Easton Schoolmen's Association gave him a plaque. His grandchildren, Ann Zansitis of Palmer Township and Jack Marhefka, honored him Wednesday night with a dinner party downtown at the Pomfret Club, attended by Mayor Tom Goldsmith. Earlier in the day, a reporter dropped by with more questions than he cared to answer. Then Saturday, Marhefka was introduced to the crowd at the Navy-Lafayette basketball game at Kirby Sports Center.

MEN'S BASKETBALL: Lafayette seniors are masters of the Midshipmen
The Express-Times/ By Corky Blake
EASTON - The outside shots kept falling, and the steals led to dunks and layups. Lafayette played a masterful first half, leading by as many as 20 points, and then maintained a pulse in the second half Saturday to defeat Patriot League basketball rival Navy 80-72 before a Senior Day crowd of 3,388 - the largest of the season at Kirby Sports Center. The win enables Lafayette (13-12) to stay in a third-place tie with Bucknell at 7-5. Navy (10-17) is tied for sixth with Army at 5-7. American leads at 9-3 and Holy Cross is second at 8-4.

MEN'S BASKETBALL: Soph emerges as Leopards' wild card
The Express-Times/ By Paul Sokoloski
On a day set aside to honor Lafayette's steady senior basketball players during their final weekend at home, it was a little-known sophomore who stole the show. Winston Davis got 16 minutes of action Saturday afternoon, which is more than he's played this whole month. Davis changed everything in the first half of Lafayette's 80-72 victory over Navy. At a time when the Leopards could use a burst of energy, with the regular season closing quickly and the Patriot League Tournament around the corner, Davis showed he can make a difference. His first basket, a pretty 3-point field goal, gave Lafayette a 22-16 lead. His second, another 3 that came down smooth as silk, boosted the Leopards into a 27-16 lead. Then Davis went for the kill.

MEN'S BASKETBALL: Seniors set the tone in Lafayette's 80-72 win
The Morning Call/ By Don Bostrom
Everyone in a Lafayette uniform reported for active duty in Saturday's 80-72 Patriot League win over Navy at the Kirby Sports Center. Veterans Reggie Guy, Rob Worthington, Mick Kuberka and Brian Burke set the tone on Senior Day with some inspired hustle that got the crowd of 3,338 stoked and really into it. Their energy proved infectious and coach Fran O'Hanlon got superb contributions from everyone he waved in as the Leopards (13-12, 7-5) denied Navy coach Don DeVoe his 500th career win. The Leopard seniors (71-43 with two Patriot League titles in their careers) left their imprint on this one. Worthington had seven rebounds, five steals and four points, Burke scored 10 points, Guy had nine points, four assists and two steals and Kuberka wound up with six rebounds and five points.

Friday, February 15, 2002

MEN'S & WOMEN'S BASKETBALL: Patriot League schedule to have an Ivy League look
The Express-Times/ By Corky Blake
The Patriot League, with the addition of American University this season, is at eight schools. Which makes scheduling much easier - and now more creative. The league's basketball schedules take on an Ivy League look next winter when teams buddy up and play Friday-Sunday sets on four of seven weekends. How will it work? Each team is assigned a travel partner. Army and Lafayette are paired together as are Lehigh and Bucknell, American and Navy, and Holy Cross and Colgate.

Thursday, February 14, 2002

MEN'S BASKETBALL: Army marches on past Lafayette to sweep series
The Express-Times/ By Corky Blake
EASTON - Next year, Lafayette College might want to consider closing the city borders to all Patriot League men's basketball teams from upstate New York. Army swept the season series with the Leopards with a convincing 78-69 victory Wednesday night before a subdued crowd of 2,104 at Kirby Sports Center.

MEN'S BASKETBALL: Patience nets Army men a record Patriot win
Times Herald-Recorrd/ By Ken McMillan
EASTON, Pa.: Passing up shots for better shots pays off in fifth league victory. Army has taken almost an entire season to realize that patience is not only a virtue, it's also the key to running an offense. The Black Knights hit 51 percent of their shots, took a double-digit lead late in the first half and managed to hold off a late charge to hand Lafayette a 78-69 Patriot League defeat before 2,104 fans at the Kirby Sports Center last night.

MEN'S BASKETBALL: Army keeps winning streak vs. Lafayette alive
The Morning Call/ By Don Bostrom
Army enjoyed a Patriot League first with its 78-69 win over Lafayette Wednesday night at the Kirby Sports Center. It marked the first time in the league's 12-year history the Black Knights (11-13, 5-6) have swept two league foes in the same season. They took two form Lehigh earlier this winter. Army is for real and very much a contender in a league that has seen no dominant team emerge from a tightly bunched pack.

Tuesday, February 12, 2002

MEN'S BASKETBALL: Every day's a battle: A diabetic since his freshman year of high school, Lafayette's Mike Farrell has not let the disease get in his way.
The Morning Call/ By Andre D. Williams
The first shot of insulin is just the beginning of each day for Lafayette College forward Mike Farrell. Three more injections follow, and then there's a barrage of sugar-count tests, eight to 10 times a day during the college basketball season. "If [the sugar count] goes too high, everything is going to be long," Farrell said. "If it's too low, everything is going to be short on the shots." Farrell laughed following his comments, a sign that, more than anything, he is accepting and is comfortable with what he must do everyday in order to live a normal life and compete successfully at the Division I level. He has had to endure a battle since his freshman year at Father Lopez High School in Daytona Beach, Fla., which is when and where he found out he had diabetes. But the Leopards' 6-8 sophomore has been winning the battle on and off the court, using a career 14.3 points and 8.1 rebounding average in high school to lure the attention of Lafayette and using his strong mental approach to maintain a positive outlook in the classroom and his many other daily routines.

Sunday, February 10, 2002

MEN'S BASKETBALL: Burke nails winning '3' at 1.3
The Express-Times/ By Corky Blake
EASTON - Senior guard Brian Burke hit the shot heard 'round College Hill, and Lafayette defeated Patriot League frontrunner American University for the second time this season. Burke connected on a 25-foot jumper with 1.3 seconds remaining to give the Leopards a 77-74 basketball victory over the Eagles before a juiced Saturday matinee crowd of 3,192 at Kirby Sports Center. Lafayette still had to survive Steven Miles' 35-foot buzzer-beater that rimmed in and out to improve to 12-11 overall and 6-4 in the league. American (13-10) remains in first place at 7-3 but the company just below the Eagles becomes more menacing with Lafayette, Bucknell and Holy Cross all at 6-4.

MEN'S BASKETBALL: AU Men Fall Short Against Lafayette
The Washington Post/ By Seth Emerson
EASTON, Pa., Feb. 9 -- Over and over, the American men's basketball team looked like it was done at Lafayette. And over and over, the Eagles came back, only to end up losing in an excruciating way. Brian Burke drilled a 25-footer with 1.3 seconds remaining as Lafayette prevailed, 77-74, in a Patriot League game today. AU had one more chance to tie it, but a 35-foot prayer by Steven Miles rolled in and finally out of the rim as the buzzer sounded.

MEN'S BASKETBALL: Leopards top pesky American
The Morning Call/ By Andre D. Williams
American University hung around close enough to be a total pest to Lafayette Saturday afternoon at Kirby Sports Center. But Lafayette controlled the clock, the tempo, and in the end, the scoreboard thanks to a game-winning 3-pointer by Brian Burke. Burke's 25-footer with 1.3 seconds left gave the Leopards a 77-74 victory before an enthusiastic crowd of 3,192. Burke had the ball in his hands with six seconds left, just dribbling and waiting for the moment to launch the shot that ultimately allowed Leopards players and fans to head joyously out into the unseasonably warm night.

Thursday, February 7, 2002

MEN'S BASKETBALL: Lafayette falls to Holy Cross
The Express-Times
WORCESTER, Mass. - Holy Cross scored the final seven points in overtime Wednesday night to defeat Lafayette 76-70 and take over sole possession of second place in Patriot League basketball at the Hart Center. The Crusaders (12-12 overall) improved to 6-3 in the league, one game behind American (13-9, 7-2). Lafayette (12-12) dropped to 5-4 and into a third-place tie with Bucknell, which defeated Navy. Army, Navy and Colgate are at 4-5 with Lehigh in last place at 1-8.

Worcester Telegram & Gazette
WORCESTER -- Holy Cross coach Ralph Willard wasn't overly pleased with his team's early defensive effort, its performance from the free-throw line, or its wayward 3-point shooting. What did make Willard happy was the Crusaders' 76-70 overtime victory over Lafayette last night at the Hart Center despite those above-mentioned lapses. "The biggest thing is finding a way to win and the guys did that at the end of the game," Willard said. "In games like this, you have to grind it out and they did that." Junior forward Tim Szatko led all scorers with 23 points. His layup off a fine feed from junior guard Brian Wilson with 1:24 left in overtime put Holy Cross ahead to stay. Senior guard Ryan Serravalle added 19 points and was 4 for 4 from the foul line in OT.

Sunday, February 3, 2002

MEN'S BASKETBALL: Lafayette tops Bison in thriller
The Express-Times/ By Michael Blouse
EASTON - Fran O'Hanlon called Lafayette College's 74-68 victory over Bucknell "a typical Patriot League game this season because they all seem to come down to the final few minutes." Coach O'Hanlon is right. This Patriot League men's basketball season has been both competitive and exciting. Saturday's enthusiastic crowd of 3,229 at Kirby Sports Center was treated to another thriller. The Leopards improved to 11-10 overall and 5-3 in the league thanks to clutch performances by several seniors.

MEN'S BASKETBALL: Kuberka's 3-point shooting helps Leopards by Bison, 74-68
The Morning Call/ By Don Bostrom
Lafayette forward Mick Kuberka has come a long way since he played some point guard for Mike McKee's junior varsity squad four years ago. But Saturday afternoon the 6-10 senior showed his prowess from 3-point range during a career-high 21-point, nine-rebound, two-steal effort in the Leopards' solid 74-68 Patriot League win over Bucknell before 3,229 fans at the Kirby Sports Center. Mike Farrell, the Patriot League field-goal percentage leader (55.1), was perfect Saturday but only had four attempts in 13 minutes because of foul trouble. Fortunately the wiry Kuberka, who admits he might have even lost some weight off his frame since arriving on College Hill from West Seneca, N.Y., stepped it up, going 4-for-5 from beyond the arc.

Saturday, February 2, 2002

MEN'S BASKETBALL: Apprentice sorcerers: Lafayette basketball players Mike Farrell and Andrew Pleick dribble - and dabble in magic
The Express-Times/ By Corky Blake
Lafayette basketball teammates Mike Farrell and Andrew Pleick haven't reached the point where they make opposing defenses disappear, but if there's a way to do it, they'll try to figure it out. When Pleick, a junior guard, transferred to Lafayette last year from Drake, he became the perfect roommate for Farrell, a 6-foot-8 sophomore center/forward. They share a passion for basketball - and magic. Farrell does card tricks, and noted with a smile that Pleick "dabbles in the darker arts." "I was working a recreation camp when this little kid, he must've been about 5, came up and asked me if I wanted to see a card trick," Farrell said. The youngster, Farrell said, put five cards on a table and not so deftly "found" the card Farrell had previously chosen. "I tried to be nice and play along with him," Farrell said. "The next day I decided to stop at a magic shop and get a few things to show him. I guess I got hooked on that. I do it for fun. It's a good ice-breaker."