American University held Division III Gettysburg College without a field goal for the first four minutes and went on to win its opener, 103-71, last night before an estimated crowd of 500 at Fort Myer.
Junior guard Frank Ross scored 21 points and keyed American's fullcourt man-to-man press early as the Eagles scored more than 100 points for the first time since their 1982-83 season-opening 105-52 victory over St. Mary's.
All 14 players in uniform scored for American, which has won four of its last five openers. The Eagles played without redshirt freshman Manuel Nadal and highly touted freshman Terry Brent of Forestville High, both sitting out disciplinary suspensions of undetermined lengths.
American's defensive pressure quickly proved too much for the Bullets (1-3), who were led by Scott Douglas with 16 points. Ross had three steals before Gettysburg made a field goal, converting the final one into a 15-2 lead.
Although he played only 22 minutes, as reserves played much of the second half, Ross made 10 of 15 shots from the floor. Forward Eric White had 15 points, 10 rebounds and six assists for the Eagles.
"Admittedly, this was the type of game we should win," said Coach Ed Tapscott. "I was hoping we would play well enough to get everybody some playing time, and we accomplished that."
A pleasant surprise for the Eagles was the play of 6-3 freshman guard Greg Stewart, who made all four of his field goal attempts and finished with 10 points.