The America East Basketball Conference continues to make news off the court. This time, it’s about one of their teams heading abroad next season to play in a doubleheader. Maryland-Baltimore County has been offered the chance to head overseas next year to play Marist as the undercard to a Power-5 match up between Kentucky and Michigan. These events are the kind of thing that can get a league noticed. Good work by the America East staff in getting this done. Here is more of what is going on around the league.
The Stony Brook Seawolves are the hottest team in the league right now. They have won seven of their last eight games including their last two from a week ago vs Manhattan and Brown. This streak has allowed Stony Brook to keep the top spot in the league by a half-game over second-place Vermont. They are getting it done on the defensive end leading the league in blocked shots averaging 5.20 a game. They have the number one and two shot blockers in the league right now in Mouhamadou Gueye, at 2.30 a game, and right behind him is Jeff Otchere at 1.80 a night. They are second in the conference in both defensive and offensive rebounding. On the offensive side, Stony Brook is pulling down 12 a game while on the defensive side it’s 28.9 a game.
Vermont snapped a rare two-game losing streak last Saturday night with a 55-38 win at home over Towson. The win was the seventh of the year for the Catamount which matches Stony Brook for the most in the league. Vermont has also been very good on the defensive end in the early going leading the league in scoring defense at 58.9 a night. They are the best in 3-pt. field goal defense giving up 70 makes on 246 attempts, an average of 0.285. They are second in the league in scoring margin at 7.9 a contest. Guard, Everett Duncan, leads America East in Assists/Turnover ratio at 6.00 (18 assists to 3 turnovers).
The Albany Great Danes have lost three in a row with the latest being a 72-51 defeat at the hands of Boston College. For the moment, they find themselves in a four-way tie for third place in the league. Injuries have played a role in the under .500 record (5-6) the team has right now. Head Coach Will Brown is hoping that by the end of non-conference play, his team should be at or near 100% healthy. One player that coach Brown is really looking forward to having is transfer junior guard JoJo Anderson who has been out since the season began with a knee injury. He has just been cleared to start back up with the team. Anderson joined Albany after one year at Univ. of Nevada. The Great Danes lead the league in FT shooting at 72%.
The Player of the Week is Stony Brook’s Elijah Olaniyi who averaged 23 points and five rebounds in the two wins last week. From the floor, he shot 57% (17-for-30) and dropped 30 on Brown last Saturday. It’s the first weekly award for the junior.
The Rookie of the Week is Hartford guard Moses Flowers who averaged 17 points, 5.5 rebounds, two assists, and two steals in two games last week. He scored 28 points in a loss to St. Francis of Brooklyn, 84-76 last Thursday. It’s the first weekly award for Flowers.
Despite the fine play from their freshman guard, it was not enough to stop the Hawks from going winless last week. Losses to both St. Francis and to Sacred Heart on Sunday 78-62, leave Hartford just a game ahead of Maine in the race to stay out of last place in the league.
Next week, more from America East Basketball.
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