Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

A Big Mac Attack Helps Rochester

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

A Big Mac Attack Helps Rochester

Article excerpt

Although he's just 22, Brendan McAllister figures his days of playing organized basketball are over.

He leaves the sport with no regrets. Especially, after what happened this month.

McAllister, a 6-2 senior guard at the University of Rochester, played the hero's role on several occasions over the last three weeks of the season, helping the Yellowjackets (25-5) advance to the NCAA Division III championship game in Salem, Va..

McAllister, an Upper St. Clair High grad, began his heroics in the regular-season finale on Feb. 26 against visiting Carnegie Mellon University. That game determined the University Athletic Association champion and an automatic bid to the NCAA Division III playoffs. McCallister totalled a game-high 24 points, including six 3-pointers, pacing Rochester to a 62-57 win.

He then scored a game-high 17 points, including five 3-pointers, helping Rochester beat Union, 79-61, in its first playoff contest. The Yellowjackets then won games against Amherst and SUNY Potsdam to advance to the NCAA Final Four.

It was in the semifinals that McAllister achieved one of the "biggest highlights of my whole basketball career." Tied with Calvin College at 62-62, McAllister delivered a 22-foot, 3-pointer with one second left on the shot clock and 4.7 seconds left in the game to give Rochester a dramatic 65-62 win and a berth in the championship game.

Teammates hugged him after the game and a younger brother, Bradley, 18, made his way onto the court to share in Brendan's joy.

It is a scene McAllister, an economics and political science major, will remember the rest of his life.

Rochester and McAllister's season would not have a fairy-tale ending, the Yellowjackets falling in the title game to Wisconsin- Stevens Point, 73-49, on March 19 before almost 3,000 fans.

But, for McAllister, the season certainly provided a rags-to- riches story line.

During his first two years at Rochester, McAllister got into less than half of the games and averaged about three minutes of playing time. …

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