Pittsburgh, Pa. – Senior forward Jeff Haus (Pittsburgh, Pa./North Allegheny) performed well in his homecoming as Haus registered his third career double-double in leading the No. 19 St. Mary's College of Maryland men's basketball team to an opening round win at the Carnegie Mellon University Double Tree Tournament Saturday afternoon.
The Seahawks (2-1) posted a 49-47 victory over Capital (Ohio) University to advance to the championship game tomorrow at 3:00 pm. St. Mary's will take on the St. Vincent College Bearcats (3-1), a 70-66 come-from-behind winner over host Carnegie Mellon (1-3) in today's second game of the day.
Capital (1-3) overcame a nine-point second-half deficit to close the gap to one on three different occasions in the final 7:29 of the contest. Junior forward Ben Jackson's (Columbus, Ohio) layup pulled the Crusaders within 48-47 with 21 seconds remaining in regulation. After a 30-second Capital timeout, Jackson fouled senior guard James Davenport (Baltimore, Md./Loyola Blakefield), sending Davenport to the line for two shots.
Davenport nailed the first free throw but missed the second and senior Michael Sommer (Celina, Ohio) hauled in the rebound with 16 seconds on the clock. Following a full Crusader timeout, Sommer launched a long-range shot as time expired but failed to connect.
Haus collected season-highs of 17 points and 10 rebounds on 8-of-11 shooting while adding a block and a steal. Sophomores MacGyver Biniak (Elkridge, Md./Howard) and Nick LaGuerre (Baltimore, Md./Lansdowne) each contributed eight points, three boards, two assists and two blocks in the Seahawk win. Junior guard Brendan McFall (Poolesville, Md./Poolesville) added six caroms.
St. Mary's never trailed again after the 19:45 mark of the first half, building its advantage to its biggest lead of the game – 23-6 – with 8:05 left in the first 20 minutes of play. Capital, who received votes in the D3hoops.com preseason poll, put together a 14-2 run behind a pair of triples by senior forward Spencer Niekamp (St. Henry, Ohio) to come within five of the Seahawks at 3:51.
St. Mary's headed into intermission with a 28-20 advantage as Haus led all players with eight points and eight caroms. The Seahawk defense stymied Capital to just 24.1% shooting in the first half, including a mere 3-of-15 from downtown.
Niekamp picked up 15 points and a dozen rebounds to pace the Crusaders in the loss.
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