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Northeastern basketball coach. Dick Dukeshire said he hopes his team will give him a 5-0 record as a Christmas present with wins this week over Harvard and Holy Cross.
The Huskies, 3-0 so far this winter, have the home-court advantage against the Crimson tonight at 8:15. They also have one of the finest backcourt combinations Harvard has faced this year.
Junior Jack Mahetas, a fine outside shot and ballhandler. leads Northeastern in scoring with 19 points per game. At the other guard is 6'4" Kevin Shea.
Harvard's guards, Matt Bozek and Dale Dover, who pace the Crimson's scoring with 21.5 and 20.5 points per game respectively, should hold their own against Maheras and Shea. despite the height advantage the Husky guards have.
The deciding factor in the game may be the rebounding Harvard's forward line is slightly taller than Northeaster's, but the Huskies make up for the difference by charging the boards.
The Crimson will play without 6'7" junior Mike Janzcewski. who is out indefinitely with a pulled tendon in his ankle. But Ernest Hardy, who has been playing with a back injury and a painful tooth infection, is returning to full strength.
Sophomore forward Brian Newmark, who leads Harvard in rebounding with control the boards for Harvard in its last 13.2 per game, has teamed with Hardy to two games. Control of the boards again tonight will virtually insure a Crimson victory.
Northeastern, which opened its season with a 99-63 trouncing of a taller Brown team, plays a pattern offense that makes particular use of the double pick to get its players open to shoot.
Harvard coach Bob Harrison plans to counter with an aggressive man-to-man defense that anticipates the double pick. Offensively. he said, the Crimson will have to be ready for anything, as the Huskies play a variety of defenses.
"This is an important game for us," said Harrison. "A win over Northeastern would put us right up there in the ratings of New England basketball coaches. A win could also give us a little momentum against the big boys we play over Christmas." he explained.
The Crimson freshman team. with a 3-1 record, plays the Husky freshman team in a 6 p.m. preliminary.
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