Home » Conference Notes » Currently Reading:

America East First Round Preview

March 5, 2004 Conference Notes No Comments




America East First Round Preview

Preview by Adam Reich

No. 8 Stony Brook vs. No. 9 UMBC
The Seawolves and Retrievers split the season series, with rebounding being the key to victory on both occasions. These two teams, who rank seventh and eighth in the conference in rebounding respectively, both lack a dominant inside presence and generally like to play up-tempo basketball. Whichever team can secure the ball on the defensive boards will be able to get out and run.

And in the open court is where Stony Brook’s D.J. Munir is at his best. The conference’s fourth leading scorer (15.7 ppg) and fifth leading assist man (3 apg), Munir always seems to make the right decision with the ball. He’ll knock down the open shot when its available and he’s an excellent passer on the break. The more often the ball is in his hands, the better off Stony Brook will be, especially in the half-court offense. The next best option for the Seawolves is reserve forward Cori Spencer. Off the bench, Spencer is the team’s second-leading scorer and best post presence. For a big guy, Spencer has a good touch and can cause match-up problems with his ability to score away from the basket. If UMBC decides to double-team Spencer inside, the pressure will be on Hendrik Feist and Mike Popoko to knock down open looks.

For the Retrievers, who knows where the points are going to come from? The last four games have seen four different players lead the team in points. Guards Kareem Washington (11.7 ppg) and Rob Gogerty (10.2 ppg) are each capable of having a big night offensively, especially if UMBC can get out on the fast break. Forward John Zito has had his share of breakout games, while off the bench Cory McJimson and Andrew Feeley have at times provided instant offense. Expect Stony Brook to play quite a bit of zone defense against the Retrievers. UMBC, who is last in the conference in three-point shooting, will have to prove they can knock down shots from the perimeter, or else it will be a long game.

UMBC has lost ten of its last eleven contests, but the lone win was a 72-53 blowout of Stony Brook. Will the Retrievers be able to duplicate that feat? The answer is: probably not. Stony Brook has better post play and a proven leader in D.J. Munir. And in the tournament, those are the types of intangibles needed to win.

Prediction: Stony Brook 68, UMBC 60

No. 7 New Hampshire vs. No. 10 Albany
The Wildcats and Great Danes are heading in opposite directions at this point in the season. UNH has won three of its last four contests, while Albany has dropped six of seven and thirteen of its last fifteen games. Neither team scores the ball too well, so expect a low scoring, grind it out kind of game. Both teams lack a significant low post threat, so whichever team manages to knock down shots from the perimeter will likely advance.

When it comes to converting open three-point shots, there is no better team in the America East than UNH. The Wildcats shoot 35% from beyond the arc, with Marcus Bullock (63 treys) being the team’s leading long-range sniper. Ben Sturgill, who has averaged over thirteen points per game in limited action, leads UNH in scoring. He and forward Craig Walls (7.1 rpg) should be able to score in the paint against an undersized Albany front line. Perhaps the biggest concern for the Wildcats is their ability to take care of the basketball. UNH finished last in the conference in turnover margin (-3.21).

For the Great Danes, the offense runs through freshman point guard Jon Iati. Averaging an astounding 40.1 minutes per game, Iati has been asked to do a lot this season. And he has responded by scoring over fourteen points per contest and leading the team in assists and three-pointers made. The only other legitimate scoring option for Albany is forward Levi Levine, who is leading the team in points (14.6 ppg). Between the two of them, Iati and Levine have taken 53% of Albany’s shots this season. On the boards, Aquawasi St. Hillaire and Chris Wyatt do a respectable job considering they often play against bigger opponents. They will need to keep the Wildcats off the glass in order for Albany to have a chance.

UNH is playing its best basketball of the season right now. And although Albany has proven they can beat the Wildcats, winning 57-52 on the road in Durham back in January, UNH has all the momentum heading into this game.

Prediction: UNH 70, Albany 59

Comment on this Article:







Subscribe to Hoopville

Enter your email address to subscribe to Hoopville

Advertisement


Hoopville Archives

College Basketball Tonight

We hope you enjoyed COLLEGE BASKETBALL TONIGHT during the 2016 NCAA Tournament. COLLEGE BASKETBALL TONIGHT is a comprehensive look at the NCAA Tournament hosted by veteran college basketball broadcaster Ted Sarandis, along with co-hosts Mike Jarvis and Terry O'Connor, both former Division I coaches. It also included many great guests, including Hoopville's own Phil Kasiecki.

The show aired on AM 710 WOR in New York City on Sunday evenings starting with Selection Sunday and running through the NCAA Tournament.

Here are links to the shows:

March 13, 2016 - First hour | Second hour

March 20, 2016 - First hour | Second hour

March 27, 2016 - First hour | Second hour

April 3, 2016 - First hour | Second hour

Everybody Needs a Head Coach

Former college basketball coach Mike Jarvis has a new book out, Everybody Needs a Head Coach.

"As you read this book, I hope that Coach Jarvis' experiences inspire you to find your purpose in life."
-Patrick Ewing, NBA Hall of Fame center

"Mike Jarvis' is one of my special friends. I am so pleased that he has taken the time to write this fabulous book."
-Mike Krzyzewski, Five-time NCAA championship head coach, Duke Blue Devils

"In reading this book, I can see that Mike hasn't lost his edge or his purpose. Readers should take a look at what he has to say."
-Jim Calhoun, Three-time NCAA champion, UConn Men's basketball

Review on Hoopville coming soon!

Coaching Changes and NBA Draft Early Entrants

The coaching carousel is moving. Keep track of the latest coaching changes right here on Hoopville.

Also, keep track of players who have declared early for the NBA Draft.

Hoopville Podcasts

Talking Hoops With Ted Sarandis – June 21, 2017

June 21, 2017 by

In our latest podcast, we talk about the NBA Draft, of course, but spend much more time on the happenings at Ohio State and Louisville and the implications starting next season.

Talking Hoops With Ted Sarandis – May 17, 2017

May 18, 2017 by

In our latest podcast, we start with the NBA Draft Lottery, then talk about a big pickup for Duke, important transfers, the coaching carousel winding down and much more.

Talking Hoops With Ted Sarandis – April 27, 2017

April 27, 2017 by

In our latest podcast, the business of college sports, as well as that of sports media, takes center stage. We talk about the layoffs at ESPN, college basketball’s opening night, and Wichita State’s departure from the Missouri Valley Conference. We close with thoughts on a departed friend of the media business as well.

Talking Hoops With Ted Sarandis – April 11, 2017

April 11, 2017 by

In our first off-season edition, we look back on the season that just ended, including redemption for one team and a big development for a conference that has had more questions than success on the hardwood. We also look at players coming and going, as well as big coaching news on a day where there was a lot of it.

Talking Hoops With Ted Sarandis – April 3, 2017

April 4, 2017 by

We look back at Monday’s national championship game, which was not a thing of beauty but had plenty of drama. Along the way we share some post-game quotes from both coaches.

Phil Kasiecki on Twitter

Recruiting Coverage

Lincoln captures Hamilton Park title

August 15, 2017 by

For the first time, a public school won the Hamilton Park Summer League, and they were led by a big effort from a junior point guard in the title game.

Notes from a day at the 2017 Boston Shootout

June 12, 2017 by

Some news and notes coming from the second and final day of action at the 2017 Boston Shootout, where the host program provided plenty of talent, but so did a program that produced a team that beat them.

Notes from a day at the 2017 Northeast Hoops Festival

April 11, 2017 by

The Northeast Hoops Festival helped bring in the new spring travel season in New England, and we have notes from some of Saturday’s action.

2016 Boston Back to School Showcase notes

September 12, 2016 by

We look back at the 2016 Boston Back to School Showcase, where a couple of Boston City League teams were among the most impressive on the day.

2016 Hoopville Spring Finale championship recap

June 28, 2016 by

We look back at the championship games of the 2016 Hoopville Spring Finale, which had a big local flavor as one might have expected.