Big, fast Rudy LaRusso poured in 27 points to lead a big, fast Dartmouth quintet to a 74-56 triumph over the varsity before a capacity crowd last night at the I.A.B.
With the score tied at 27-all after two minutes of the second half, the Indians reeled off 16 straight points to put the game on ice. Dartmouth now has a 4-0 record in League competition, while the Crimson stands at 2 and 2.
The contest started quickly with the Big Green jumping away to a 12-4 advantage at the 5-minute mark. The varsity retaliated, however, and knotted the count at 14-all when Bob Bowditch hit one of his patented left hand jump shots four minutes later.
Dartmouth once more took the lead, as the play grew sloppier and rougher, but another Bowditch field goal put the Crimson ahead for the only time all night, 19 to 18. LaRusso then scored on a jump shot from the foul line, and, minutes later, after Dave Grayer had tied it at 23-all, Chuck Kaufman sent the Indians off with a 25-23 halftime lead on his first goal of the night.
It was early in the second half that Dartmouth proved its superiority by running off 16 points while holding the varsity scoreless. Spearheaded by Walt Sosnowski, who tallied 13 of his 18 markers in the second half, the Big Green operated from a brilliant 2-1-2 zone defense, stealing the ball repeatedly from Mike Donohue, George Harrington, and Bob Repetto and starting fast breaks that inevitably resulted in easy baskets.
After the deluge, the varsity fought back gamely but futilely, for the height, speed, and finesse of the visitors were clearly too much for the Crimson. At 14:-45, the varsity pulled within eight points on a Donohue push shot, but Dartmouth went into a semi-freeze, working the ball around the outside until someone got clear for a lay-up shot. In the last five minutes, in fact, the Indians outscored the varsity, 15 to 5, despite a full-court press.
LaRusso was easily the outstanding player on the floor, pulling down 12 rebounds, and moving in and out of the key-hole with rare agility for a man his size. Probably knowing that he was being watched by Celtic coach Red Auerbach, the 6 ft., 6 in. forward succeeded in putting on a good show. And he had help from his talented teammates, notably Sosnowski, Kaufman, and Gary Vandeweghe.
Bowditch paced the varsity scoring with 14 points, followed by Repetto with 13. Griff McClellan netted six of six free throws along with two field goals for 10. It was this trio that shared the difficult task of guarding LaRusso.
Most disappointing were Harrington and Donohue, who were consistently missing on their outside shots. They scored eight and four points respectively, and for a Crimson victory, at least one of them would have had to be scoring better.
Dartmouth, then, outplayed, outrebounded (45 to 36), and outshot (47 per cent to 34 per cent) the underdog varsity. But an encouraging note was struck in the preliminary contest when the Yard-lings swamped the Dartmouth freshmen, 77 to 49