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STATEN ISLAND, N.Y.--Staten Island--and then even more intimidating--a sell-out crowd of 18,000--combined to shatter the Crimson hoopsters last night, 98-63 here at Sutter Gymnasium.
In this rural outpost of New York City--the spirit, however, is more New Jersey than Brooklyn--Wagner has assembled a dedicated basketball following after a 21-7 season last year. Undefeated after three games this year, Wagner offers a most unhospitable welcome to visiting teams.
The Crimson's usually deadly shooting hands failed the squad early and as a result, the bigger and better-shooting Seahawks destroyed the cagers. Harvard's record falls to 1-2.
After shooting 63 per cent from the floor in the first half of its last game against Texas, Harvard hit a dismal 35 per cent of its shots in the first half yesterday, the primary reason for the 12-point halftime deficit.
The lone bright spot was sophomore swingman Don Fleming, who connected for 13 points in the opening frame and 17 points overall.
Tiny Sutter Gym seemed ready to explode after Wagner opened the second half with an 18-to-4 run in the first five minutes that inflated the lead to an imposing 24 points.
The crowd's enthusiasm and several very hot Seahawk hands--especially those of Jamie Cianphelio--put the game officially out of reach. Before the three-quarter mark, the score stood at 70-39, with the lid sealed on the Crimson's first road loss of the year.
With substitutes mingling freely and both teams allowing their styles of play to become increasingly ragged, the lead stayed at about 32 points for the remainder of the game.
WAGNER 98 HARVARD 63 at Staten Island N.Y.
W--Yizar 7 2-4 16: Jimenez 4 0-1 8: Thompkins 4 5-6 13: Powell 5 2-2 12: Ciampaglio 8 0-0 16: Amejko 2 1-2 5: Rogers 1 2-2 4: Mahala 0 2-2 2: Hogan 2 4-6 8: Bishop 3 1-2 7: McCann 2 1-2 5: Capstra 1 0-0 2: Totals: 39 20-29 98.
H--Fleming 7 3-4 17: Allen 0 0-0 0: Harns 1 1-2 3: Mannix 2 5-6 9: Taylor 1 0-0 2: Dixon 4 0-0 8: Flatt 4 0-0 8: Carona 2 0-0 4: Clarke 2 0-0 4: Coatsworth 1 0-0 2: Kohn 0 0-0: Anderson 3 0-0 6: Totals. 27 9-13 63
In the early going, Harvard committed four uncharacteristic turnovers, perhaps a result of playing in front of the noisy sellout crowd in a tiny gym that shook after every hometown score.
Crimson coach Frank McLaughlin had to ask for time out when two Wagner fast breaks gave the New Yorkers six straight points and a 15-8 lead.
After an 8-2 Harvard burst--six poured in by Fleming--Wagner came up with an identical spurt of its own to keep the Seahawk lead at eight. Both teams then developed cold shooting hands.
Daymon Yzar's layup off a fast break with 5:42 remaining in the first half gave Wagner its first ten-point lead of the night at 31-21, and prompted the Crimson to call another time out.
A vintage McLaughlin tirade earned the coach his first technical foul of the year, and the two foul shots maintained the Seahawks' ten-point lead.
The tempo slowed and the level of play deteriorated during the rest of the half. Scott Rogers' jumper at the buzzer put Wagner ahead at 41-29, the largest lead of the game. It was downhill from there.
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