Men’s basketball team achieves ‘sweetness’ after championship

By Staff Writer
March 21, 2002

Tom Cartlidge

This year’s men’s basketball team knew the recipe for success. “Blend preparation, performance, chemistry and luck, and you will get success,” according to Head Coach John Dzik. This year’s team ended its season with a 19-12 record accomplishing many things along the way.

The men’s team had many qualities that made them achieve so much this year but most of all it was their “willingness to accept coaching,” Dzik said. The team was forced to bend a lot but never broke. “The team finally realized that individually they were not outstanding, but the sum of the parts could be,” Dzik stated.

It takes teamwork to get this far in a sport. Team captain Gary Goldman and fellow teammate Tim Gordon both proved to be good leadership for the team as well.

The biggest accomplishment for the team was making it to the Sweet 16. This means that they were one of the top 16 teams in the country for Division III. This is a great honor especially for Cabrini because it has never happened before. One of the most important games of the season that sticks out in Coach Dzik’s mind is the game against William Patterson. Winning this game with a score of 47-43 allowed the Cavaliers to move on and become part of the elite 16 teams. “It was a historic moment for Cabrini,” Dzik said.

They lost in the Sweet 16 in the game against Elizabethtown in the last four seconds by one shot. Elizabethtown went on to go to the national championships. This is how close our Cavaliers came.

Keep in mind that the Pennsylvania Athletic Conference was started ten years ago and Cabrini has eight out of the 10 PAC titles. Our men’s team also has the best winning percent out of every Division III team in the country and is fourth place in this category in all divisions. This means that only four teams in the country has a higher winning percentage. “We find a way to win,” Dzik said.

The basketball program started in 1980 with Dzik coaching ever since. According to Dzik, “It has been 22 years of hard work with a consistent level of success.” His goal is always to move forward and the same goal is there for next year’s returning players. Dzik hopes that the returning players realize their capabilities and understand how to achieve this goal. He says that the team now knows what it takes to win. “When you start to play well it can become contagious,” Dzik said. This year’s teams proved that through all of their accomplishments.

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