Scouting Report: The Mount

The Explorers open the season against a familiar foe, the Mount St. Mary's Mountaineers. La Salle comes into its first game with many new faces while the Mount has two games under their belt and some returning experience. However, they have dismissed their starting point guard from the team. Just what can we expect from the Mountaineers?

Projected Starters:
1 Jeremy Goode: 5"9 FR G
2 Chris Vann 6"0 JR G
3 Mychal Kearse 6"4 SR G
40 Sam Atupem 6"7 SO F
45 Markus Mitchell 6"7 SO F

Mount St. Mary's comes into the game with a reputation for playing tough man to man and pressure the basketball defense. Last season they allowed just 66.5 pts/game, which led to their 13-17 overall record but impressive 11-7 record in Northeast Conference play. No one epitomizes their defensive mindset than their team leader, Mychal Kearse. Kearse, a 6"4 wing is their top returning scorer but his main attribute is his ability to defend. He was the NEC Defensive Player of the Year last season. His will undoubtedly be Darnell Harris' shadow in this game. His job is to defend the other team's top scorer. The Harris-Kearse match-up will be an important one and may determine the outcome of this game.

The Mount is 1-1 overall after losing to West Virginia in their opener and defeating James Madison this week at home by 11 points. However, not all is good as head coach Milan Brown dismissed starting point guard Joey Butler following the win against the Dukes. That should allow La Salle to pressure the basketball against a less experienced floor leader the Mountaineers will be forced to use.

First games are rarely well played and often are struggles for even the more experienced college basketball teams. The Explorers caught a break when Butler was dismissed but still will most likely have some opening day struggles in this game. Will they overcome it all against the upset-minded Mountaineers?