Jordan Stevens added 16 points and Justin Burrell 12 for the Crusaders (5-7), and Eric Obeysekere came off the bench to score 10 points and grab 15 rebounds. Stevens had seven assists and Burrell six.
Holy Cross outrebounded the Dons (9-4) 37-24 and shot 68.8 percent (11 of 16) in the second half, helping the Crusaders survive committing 28 turnovers to just 15 by San Francisco.
After Holy Cross led 44-33 with 17:51 left in the game, San Francisco used an 18-5 run to take a 51-49 lead with 10:44 remaining.
The Dons led 61-60 before a dunk by Brown with 6:20 left put the Crusaders ahead to stay.