1. ST. BONAVENTURE (18-0)
2. COLUMBIA (17-3)
3. ARMY (18-4)
It looked easy for undefeated St. Bonaventure when 6'11" Bob Lanier and Bill Butler hit their first 11 shots and the Bonnies rolled to a 34-26 half-time lead over Seton Hall. But Lanier fouled out with eight minutes to go, and suddenly SH was a threat. It bowed out in overtime 81-71, and Lanier was gracious in his praise of the Bonnies. "They don't need me," he said. "They can do it on their own."
Army had no trouble getting by Colgate 86-52, but the Cadets' 12-game winning streak came to a halt in Atlanta. Despite the loss of rebounder Steve Hunt on fouls with 12 minutes left, Army was still in the game with Georgia Tech with four minutes to play. Then Dave Clark fired in six straight points and Tech won 60-55.
Columbia kept its streak going. Playing tough defense and scoring freely, the Lions hammered Dartmouth 82-56 and Harvard 115-56 for their 13th in a row, while Ivy co-leader Princeton was struggling to beat Brown 54-40 and Yale 74-71.
"We went down there expecting to step on a doormat. Instead we stepped on a rattlesnake" is the way Fordham Coach Johnny Bach described his team's 70-66 loss to George Washington, which had won only three games. That was not the end of the Rams' troubles. They made a late run at St. John's but the Redmen, who had beaten Notre Dame 83-81 on the road, dropped in nine foul shots—four by Rudy Bogad—in the last few minutes to win 75-71.
Most teams get so enchanted watching Niagara's slick Calvin Murphy dribble the ball between his legs, head-fake and then go up for a soaring jump shot that all they do is admire his style. But Villanova surrounded him with their competent zone and Murphy got only eight field goals and 28 points as the Wildcats won 78-56. Two nights later, against St. Peter's, Murphy was superb. He scored 50 points, and Niagara won 100-88.
The first college doubleheader in New York's new still-to-be-perfected Madison Square Garden was hardly a rousing success. The electric clock and scoreboard did not work, the backboards quivered and only 5,214 people showed up. What's more, NYU lost to Tulane 71-60, and Georgetown beat Manhattan 78-77. New Yorkers were more excited over LIU, the nation's No. 1 small-college team. The Blackbirds (18-0) defeated Adelphi 59-56 and Wagner 89-55.
St. Joseph's, beaten by Davidson 66-60, upset Villanova 63-54. Providence defeated DePaul 71-60, Canisius 83-72 and Creighton 75-64, while Holy Cross won over Massachusetts 70-69 and Assumption 91-77, and Boston College routed Rhode Island 125-73 and Georgetown 103-79. Duquesne, 16-3 and a sure bet for a tournament, buried Xavier 85-67.