Home » Conference Notes » Currently Reading:

Patriot Finals Preview

March 11, 2004 Conference Notes No Comments




Patriot League Finals Preview

Preview by Steve Sheridan

No. 1 Lehigh vs. No. 2 American
Despite all the parity that has prevailed during this Patriot League season, in the end it comes down to number one against number two. The two teams come in on different terms, as Lehigh is competing in its first-ever league championship game while American has now appeared in three straight title games.

For Lehigh, this game is the culmination of all the hard work put forth by Patriot League Coach of the Year Billy Taylor, who in two years has turned around a moribund program into on of the elite teams in the Patriot League. Against Bucknell, the Mountain Hawks showed that they can win a game with defense as well as offense, holding the Bison to under 32 percent shooting in a 60-45 victory. The team also proved that it was more than just Austen Rowland and Jason Mgebroff, as Jose Olivero and bench-player Kevin Tempest displayed that the Mountain Hawks have many ways to beat you. Rowland, however, is still very dangerous on the floor for Lehigh, as the Patriot League Player of the Year and points leader is never afraid to hoist up a shot.

American, on the other hand, is becoming a staple near the top of the Patriot League. This year’s squad may be the best yet, as the team has reeled off six straight wins for the first time since the 1989-90 season. Like the Mountain Hawks, the Eagles also have many ways to beat you, led by Patriot League Freshman of the Year Andre Ingram, despite the fact that he was held to just five points and one field goal in the team’s 65-55 semifinal win over Colgate. Andres Rodriguez also is able to beat you, either with his shooting or with his dishing, as the Patriot League’s assist leader is never afraid to hand the ball off to his willing teammates. Jernavis Draughn is also capable of taking over a game on the glass, providing a steady presence down low for head coach Jeff Jones and his team.

Lehigh swept the season series against American this year, winning an overtime struggle on the Eagles’ home court and running away with a win on their home court later in the season. Rowland and Olivero were the two main offensive forces in the two Mountain Hawk wins, and so the Eagles will be sure to keep a very careful eye on those two players come game time.

In a game of this magnitude, anything goes. However, the home-court advantage that Lehigh will have could be the difference between two very evenly matched teams. Stabler Arena will be sure to be raucous on Saturday afternoon, and I believe that that intense atmosphere will push the top-seeded Mountain Hawks over the top and into the NCAA Tournament for the first time.

Prediction: In a back-and-forth affair, Lehigh goes dancing with a 64-56 win.

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 – December 8, 2017

December 8, 2017 by

In our latest podcast, we talk about a bizarre finish to an early-season tournament game, the Pac-12’s early struggles, Florida teams going in different directions and two northeast teams trending less relevant even as they excite fans at a famous arena.

Talking Hoops With Ted Sarandis – November 22, 2017

November 22, 2017 by

In our pre-Thanksgiving podcast, we look at a key injury that is likely to be devastating for his team and an under-the-radar 4-0 week, then move on to some early SEC impressions and a couple of teams that just continue to win.

Talking Hoops With Ted Sarandis – November 9, 2017

November 10, 2017 by

The season is almost here, and we take a look at some of what to expect this coming season. We have preseason polls, conference changes, a look at some conferences and some matchups to start the season.

Talking Hoops With Ted Sarandis – October 2, 2017

October 2, 2017 by

The FBI has zeroed in on college basketball in a big way, and what has happened may be the beginning of a massive hit to the sport. We discuss what we know thus far in our latest podcast.

Talking Hoops With Ted Sarandis – August 17, 2017

August 18, 2017 by

In our latest podcast, we check in with some good news from a few teams overseas after a big scare, plus a big addition for a championship contender, a conference on the rise, and a great coach thinking about a return to the bench.

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.