Mass. College Hockey: BU Captures Hockey East, Tops UML 5-3


The Boston University men’s ice hockey team captured their eighth Hockey East crown on Saturday evening at the TD Garden, defeating last year’s reigning champion UMass Lowell, 5-3. With the win, the Terriers earn an automatic bid to the upcoming NCAA Division I Men’s Ice Hockey Tournament – the bracket will be released tomorrow.

Courtesy of the Hockey East Communications Office, here is this evening’s release:

BOSTON - Jack Eichel (North Chelmsford, Mass.) scored twice and set up another and Matt Grzelcyk (Charlestown, Mass.) added a goal and two assists to lead top-seeded Boston University to a 5-3 win over fourth-seeded UMass Lowell in the title game of the 31s​t annual Hockey East Championship in front of 13,352 fans at TD Garden Saturday evening.

In their 11th trip the finals the Terriers captured the Lamoriello Trophy as Hockey East Champions for the eighth time, their first since 2009 and the team’s first under second-year coach David Quinn. With the win, Boston University (25-7-5) earns Hockey East’s automatic bid the NCAA Men’s Ice Hockey Championship. The tournament’s selections will be announced Sunday at noon on ESPNU.

Eichel added the William Flynn Tournament MVP Award to sweep the conference’s major awards. The freshman forward picked up the Warrior Hockey East Player of the Year and Pro Ambitions Rookie of the Year awards on Thursday. He was joined on the all-tournament team by Grzelcyk, forward Evan Rodrigues (Etobicoke, Ontario) and goaltender Matt O’Connor (Toronto, Ontario).

BU opened up a tightly played first period with a pair of goals starting at 13:08.  On a power play Eichel carried the puck deep into the UML zone and fed Grzelcyk, who snapped it home at 13:08. O’Connor helped start the play and picked up an assist on Grzelcyk’s 10th of the year.

At 15:02, BU would make it 2-0 when Eichel again carried it to the goal mouth to shoot it past UMass Lowell goaltender Kevin Boyle (Manalapan, N.J.). Rodrigues and Brandon Hickey (Leduc, Alberta) picked up assists.

The River Hawks closed the period cutting the deficit in half with a power play goal of their own by center Joe Gambardella (Staten Island, N.Y.) just six seconds into the man-advantage at 18:10. Gambardella won the draw and after passes from Tommy Panico (Wall, N.J.) and Adam Chapie (Oxford, Mich), was alone in the low slot and used a forehand to backhand move to tuck it in for his 14th of the season.

The second period was all Boston University as it added a pair of goals, both on odd-man rushes. Senior Cason Hohmann (Arlington, Texas) finished a 3-on-1 started by A.J. Grier (Joliette, Quebec) and Doyle Somerby (Marblehead, Mass.), slipping the puck between Boyle’s pads at 5:38. The River Hawks had a great chance to make it a one-goal game midway through the stanza but O’Connor gloved a rebound attempt by Jake Kamrass (Atlanta, Ga.) from point blank range.

With the period winding down BU made it 4-1 as Grzelcyk, on a 2-on-1, set up Nickolas Olsson (Escondido, Calif.) who beat Boyle with 44.5 seconds before the intermission.

UML battled back to make it 4-2, as Michael Kapla (Eau Claire, Wis.) drilled it past O’Connor from the slot 6:47 into the third, converting a feed from Michael Fallon (Glenview, Ill.) with Dylan Zink (Madison, Wis.) also adding an assist.

Eichel made it 5-2 with his second of the game, 24th of the campaign and sixth in four tournament games with a great individual effort at 14:43 of the third after feeds from Nick Roberto (Wakefield, Mass.) and Grzelcyk.

With 3:08 left, Michael Louria (Glenview, Ill.) of the River Hawks closed the scoring at 5-3 with A.J. White (Dearborn, Mich.) and Fallon picking up assists.

Boyle finished with 19 saves for UMass Lowell (21-12-6) saw its two-year run as conference champions come to an end in its third straight appearance in the final game. The River Hawks went 1-for-4 on the power play and BU went 1-for-3. O’Connor had 22 saves for the Terriers who will make their 32nd trip to the NCAAs.

Joining the four Terriers on the All-Championship team were blueliner Robbie Russo (Bartlett, Ill.) of Notre Dame and forward Grayson Downing (Abbotsford, Alberta) of New Hampshire.

Game notes: The Terriers are 8-3 in the HEA Championship Game all-time…The Terriers are 3-1 all-time in the HEA Championship Game against the River Hawks… Freshman forward Jack Eichel has 66 points (24-42-66) on the season…Eichel’s 66 points set the freshman record for most in team history in a season…Eichel’s 66 points (24-42-66) are the most by a freshman in the NCAA since Paul Kariya had 100 (25-75-100) in the 1992-93 season…Eichel extended his point-streak to 12 games (9-17-26)…Junior defenseman Matt Grzelcyk extended his point streak to 11 games (9-8-17)…This year’s Hockey East All-Tournament Team consisted of goaltender Matt O’Connor (BU), defensemen Matt Grzelcyk (BU), Robbie Russo (ND), and forwards Jack Eichel (BU), Grayson Downing (UNH), and Evan Rodrigues (BU).

Mass. College Hoops: Babson Falls To Augustana In NCAA D3 Semifinals

By Matt Noonan 

Augustana College used a 19-1 run during the final minutes of the second half as the Vikings defeated Babson College in the 2015 NCAA Division III semifinals at the Salem Civic Center in Salem, Virginia.

The Vikings will play for the title tomorrow evening against the winner of Wisconsin-Stevens Point and Virginia Wesleyan.

Babson’s Joey Flannery paced the Beavers and all scorers with a game-high 27 points, while chipping in six rebounds, two assists, one block and one steal. David Mack added eight points and pulled down three defensive boards, John Wickey registered three points, five rebounds, four assists and one block and Sam Bohmiller finished with five points and one steal.

Hunter Hill led the Vikings with 18 points, while chipping in four caroms and four assists. Nic Hoepfner stuffed the stat sheet with nine points, three rebounds, two assists and two blocks, while Griffin Pils netted 10 points.

As a team, Augustana converted 17-of-22 free throws. They also sank 23-of-54 shots and drilled five three-pointers. Babson finished 18-of-45 from the floor and was 10-for-15 from the stripe.

Babson overcame a 32-19 deficit at the break with a 22-9 run, which was sparked by back-to-back layups from Flannery and Wickey. Bradley Jacks capped the run with a jumper that evened the score at 41-41 with 9:00 remaining in the second stanza.

Both teams swapped baskets over the next few minutes before a trifecta from Hill pushed the Vikings ahead for good.

The setback snapped Babson’s 17-game winning streak, which featured back-to-back New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) semifinal and championship victories against MIT and Springfield. The Green and White went onto earn four straight NCAA Tournament victories, including a come-from-behind win last Saturday against Trinity College in the Sectional Finals.

Babson closes its season with a 29-3 record, their best season in program history. Friday’s semifinal contest was their first-ever in program history.

Mass. College Hoops: New Haven Edges Stonehill In East Regional Finals


University of New Haven is headed to the NCAA Division II Women’s Basketball Quarterfinals following a dramatic 58-57 win over Stonehill College on Monday evening in the East Regional Finals in Garden City, New York.

Briana Bradford recorded the game’s most important steal with four seconds remaining before dashing down the court for a right-handed layup, which sealed the victory and punched the Chargers’ ticket to the quarterfinals in South Dakota.

Stonehill immediately called a timeout following the basket and attempted to net the game-winner, but Kelly Martin’s three-point attempt did not drop and the Chargers escaped with an exciting one-point win.

Bradford netted seven points, pulled down six rebounds and recorded one assist and one steal, while teammate Aquillin Hayes scored a game-high 21 points. Hayes also recorded 10 rebounds.

Tori Faieta paced Stonehill with a double-double of 19 points and 16 rebounds; Martin chipped in 12 points, four assists and six boards, while Ashley Gendron and Amy Pelletier scored five points apiece.

Stonehill led New Haven, 33-32, at the break, but the Chargers outscored the Skyhawks during the second stanza, 26-24.

New Haven converted 26-of-69 attempts from the floor, including three trifectas. Stonehill connected on 19-of-61 attempts and finished with four triples. The Skyhawks sank 15-of-18 shots at the free throw line – Martin finished a perfect 10-for-10 at the stripe – while Hayes connected on 3-of-4 attempts, the only free throws recorded by the Chargers.

The Chargers, who trailed most of the second half, earned their initial lead of the second stanza with 5:56 remaining as Elizabeth Cruso drilled a three-pointer that provided them with a 53-52 advantage.

Cruso would extend the Blue and Gold’s advantage with another triple at 4:26 before Stonehill closed the gap at 3:18 with a layup by Paige Marshall.

Marshall converted Stonehill’s final field goal of the evening, a trifecta with 56 seconds remaining, which put the Skyhawks up, 57-56.

New Haven, which entered the East Region as the second-seed, will face the winner of Cal Poly-Pomona/California Baptist University on Tuesday, March 24.

Mass. College Lax: Mass. Maritime Captures 2nd Annual Maritime Cup


Massachusetts Maritime Academy junior Reed McLean scored the game-winning goal – a man-up strike – with 1:08 remaining in the second overtime that lifted the Buccaneers to a 10-9 win over SUNY-Maritime in the Second Annual Maritime Cup on Sunday afternoon.

Courtesy of the Massachusetts Maritime Academy Sports Information Department, here is this afternoon’s release from the championship match:

THROGGS NECK, N.Y. —  Junior Reed McLean’s (Wilbraham, Mass.) man-up goal with 1:08 remaining in the second overtime lifted Massachusetts Maritime to a 10-9 college men’s lacrosse victory over SUNY-Maritime in the championship match of the Second Annual Maritime Cup played Sunday afternoon at Reinhart Field.

McLean’s golden goal came on a feed from senior Dylan Freudenberg (Islip, N.Y.) that gave the visiting Buccaneers their second straight Maritime Cup title and the best start (4-0) in program history.  In a contest that saw eight lead changes and six ties, Massachusetts Maritime came back from a two-goal third quarter deficit to take a 9-8 lead on sophomore Ryan McNeill’s (Burlington, Mass.) marker with 1:41 remaining in regulation, but the host Privateers (2-3) evened matters just 36 seconds later on a tally by sophomore Joe Fusco (Hopewell Junction, N.Y.).  McLean was stopped on a pair of point blank chances in the final five seconds of the fourth quarter, and both teams had two solid scoring changes each in the extra sessions that were denied prior to the game-winner.

The Buccaneers jumped out to a 2-1 cushion after the opening 15 minutes of play on goals by McNeill and McLean, but SUNY-Maritime overcame a 3-2 deficit with three unanswered scores, including two off the stick of senior Paul Grubb (Merrick, N.Y.) in the final 3:01 of the half, to take a 5-3 edge at the break.  Grubb completed his hat trick midway through the third stanza to give the Privateers a 6-4 advantage, but tallies by McLean and Freudenberg (man-up) in a 2:12 span evened matters once again at 6-6.  Freshman Nick Pellegrino’s (Melville, N.Y.) man-up goal gave the hosts the lead back at 8-7 with 10:55 remaining, but junior Anthony Kurylak’s (Exeter, N.H.) 12th tally of the season with 5:33 to play squared the match for Massachusetts Maritime, setting up the frantic finish to regulation and McLean’s heroics in the second overtime period that enabled the Buccaneers to defend their Maritime Cup title less than 24 hours after claiming their fourth straight Admiral’s Cup victory over rival Maine Maritime in a 16-8 opening round triumph.

McLean, McNeill and Kurylak netted hat tricks and a single assist to finish with four points each in the win for Massachusetts Maritime, which also received a marker and two helpers from Freudenberg as well as single assists off the sticks of sophomores Steven Anderson (Crownsville, Md.), Kevin Collins (Hampden, Mass.) and Alec Plotnikiewicz (South Hadley, Mass.).  Grubb added a pair of assists to his hat trick to finish with five points in the setback for SUNY-Maritime, which also received a hat trick and helper from Pellegrino on the afternoon.  Freshman Julius Diaz (Freeport, N.Y.) tallied as well for the Privateers, who received a single assist off the stick of senior Robert Lalena (Bellmore, N.Y.).

Sophomore Jacob Brennan (North Reading, Mass.) came off the bench to record his first career victory in goal for Massachusetts Maritime with 11 saves in 31-plus minutes of play, as junior James Klose (Ellicott City, Md.) made 13 stops in 35-plus minutes of action for the visitors.  Freshman Brendan McNally (Long Beach, N.Y.) made 12 saves in the setback for SUNY-Maritime, as the Privateers outshot the Buccaneers by a 60-40 margin (33-22 on goal) for the contest.  The win was Massachusetts Maritime’s third in the last four meetings with SUNY-Maritime dating back to 2012.

Massachusetts Maritime hosts Plymouth State in a non-league outing on Tuesday evening at Clean Harbors Stadium beginning at 7:00 p.m., while SUNY-Maritime heads to Utica, N.Y. on Friday evening to take on SUNY-Polytechnic in a non-league match that also begins at 7:00 p.m.

Mass. College Hoops: Highlights From Babson-Trinity (VIDEO)


In case you missed the exciting comeback last night by the Babson College men’s basketball team then revisit their NCAA Division III Sectional Tournament victory against Trinity College (Conn.) in a highlight package (below!), courtesy of the Athletic Department’s YouTube Channel.

Babson rallied to force overtime last night with a Joey Flannery layup with 13 seconds remaining before the Beavers outscored the Bantams, 10-3, during the extra session, which secured the win and a trip to this upcoming weekend’s Final Four in Salem, Virginia.

The Beavers will take on Augustana (Ill.) at 5:30 p.m. on Friday, March 20 at the Salem Civic Center. A win for the Green and White would pit them against the winner of University of Wisconsin-Stevens Points and Virginia Wesleyan.


Following their exciting victory, Flannery, John Wickey and head coach Stephen Brennan discussed the postseason contest with the media – and the video of that interview is below.

Mass. College Hoops: Babson Rallies Past Trinity, Advances To Div. III Final Four


Courtesy of the Babson College Athletics’ Communication Office, here is Saturday evening’s release from the men’s basketball game against Trinity College.

Babson rallied to force overtime before going on a 10-3 in the extra session that capped their comeback and secured them a spot in Friday’s (Mar. 20) Division III Final Four:

BABSON PARK, Mass.—Sophomore Matthew Droney (Canton, Mass.) knocked down the go-ahead three-pointer with 54 seconds left in regulation as fourth-ranked Babson College rallied to defeat Trinity College, 76-69, in an NCAA Tournament Sectional Final on Saturday night at Staake Gymnasium.

With its 17th straight win, Babson is headed to the NCAA Division III Final Four for the first time in program history. Trinity, which was making its first sectional championship game appearance since 1999, concludes its season at 23-7.

Senior John Wickey (Manchester, N.H.) scored a game-high 23 points to go along with four assists to lead the Beavers. Sophomore Joey Flannery (Acton, Mass.) added 20 points four rebounds and two steals, while senior Eric Dean (Gilford, N.H.) and Droney each added nine points. Dean and fellow senior David Mack (Holden, Mass.) both pulled down seven boards in the win.

Junior Shay Ajayi (Brooklyn, N.Y.) led the Bantams with 22 points on 8-of-13 shooting and eight rebounds. Classmate Jaquann Starks (Hartford, Conn.) added 21 points and eight boards, while sophomore Ed Ogundeko (Brooklyn, N.Y.) finished with 10 points and six rebounds.

After six early lead changes, Trinity used a 9-2 run to forge a 16-10 lead on a three-pointer by Starks with 12:35 to go in the opening half. Babson responded with six consecutive points to spark a 15-5 spurt to grab a 25-21 lead on two free throws by Wickey with 6:26 to play before halftime.

The Bantams regained the lead on a hoop by Starks at 26-25, and then closed the stanza by scoring on six of their final seven possessions to take a 41-33 lead into the locker room.

Trinity took its biggest lead of the game at 45-36 on an Ogundeko hoop, and later matched it on a three-point play by senior George Papadeas (Athens, Greece) with 12:40 left in the second half. Wickey and first-year Bradley Jacks (Fort Washington, Md.) combined to score the next nine points for the Beavers though, cutting their deficit to 52-50 with 9:16 to play.

The Bantams regained control, getting a pair of second-chance hoops by Ajayi, and a layup by Ogundeko to forge a 62-55 lead with 4:17 remaining. Dean scored three straight points to get the Green and White back within four, but Starks answered with a pull-up trey to give Trinity a 65-58 lead with 2:52 to go in regulation.

Babson made free throws on its next two possessions and forced three straight turnovers, pulling to within one after a steal and dunk by Flannery with 29 seconds to go. Junior Andrew Hurd (Windsor, Conn.) knocked down 1-of-2 at the line to make it 66-64, but Flannery converted a driving layup to tie the game at 66-66 with 13 seconds left. The Bantams had the final possession of regulation but were unable to get a shot up, sending the game to overtime.

The teams each made a free throw in the opening two minutes of the extra session before Wickey put the Beavers ahead 69-67 with a bucket in the paint. Following two empty possessions, Ajayi knocked down a pair of free throws to tie the game at 69-69 with 1:19 to go. Droney connected on just his fifth three-pointer of the season on Babson’s next possession, and the hosts made four straight free throws over the final 22 seconds to secure a trip to the program’s first final four.

The Green and White shot 50 percent (23-of-46) from the floor and outscored Trinity 25-16 from the free throw line. Trinity shot just 39.3 percent (24-of-61) from the field and were just 26.3 percent from beyond the arc for the game.

Babson will take on sixth-ranked Augustana (26-4) on Friday at the Salem Civic Center in Salem, Va.

GAME NOTES: The victory was just the second over Trinity in program history…Babson finished the season 19-2 at home…the Beavers have won 12 straight games when shooting 50 percent or better from the floor…Babson has won 32 straight games and is 26-1 this season when outscoring its opponent at the free throw line…the Beavers are 11-1 this winter in games decided by five points or less or in overtime…the victory was also Babson’s eighth of the year when trailing at halftime…the Beavers are 23-0 this season when scoring at least 60 points.

Mass. College Hoops: Babson, Tufts Advance To NCAA D3 Semifinals

By Matt Noonan 

Trailing 41-33 at the break, Babson rallied to force overtime, outscoring Trinity College (Conn.) down the stretch, 43-28, to claim a 76-69 victory on Saturday evening in the NCAA Division III Sectional Finals.

With the win, Babson advances to it first-ever NCAA “Final Four,” which is scheduled to take place next Friday, March 20 in Salem, Virginia. The Beavers will face the winner of Augustana (Ill.)-Marietta.

Virginia Wesleyan also punched it ticket to the semifinals, knocking off Randolph-Macon, 49-47. They will face the winner of East-Texas Baptist vs. Wisconsin-Stevens Point.

Babson’s John Wickey led all players with 23 points, Joey Flannery chipped in 20 points, four rebounds, two steals, one assist and one block, and Sam Bohmiller sank two crucial free throws in overtime that sealed the victory.

Trinity was led by Shay Ajayi, who finished with 22 points, eight rebounds and one steal. Jaquann Starks added 21 points and eight boards for the Bantams, while Ed Ogundeko added 10 points off the bench.

Babson tailed a majority of the second half until Flannery jumpstarted a late rally with a full court dunk following a steal on defense. He would add a layup roughly 16 seconds later that evened the score at 66-66 and forced an extra session.

In overtime, Babson and Trinity swapped buckets until Matthew Droney drilled a three-pointer with 54 seconds remaining, which pushed the Beavers ahead for good. Bohmiller and Flannery extended the lead with a pair of free throws, respectively.

Tufts 58, FDU-Florham 52: The Jumbos are headed back to Final Four as they defeated the defending national champion Devils in Cousens Gymnasium in Medford in the NCAA Sectional Finals.

Tufts’ Lauren Dillon led all scorers with 14 points, while Shalette Brown and Alyssa McDonough paced FDU-Florham with 12points apiece. Tufts also received double-doubles from Hayley Kanner and Michela North, as the two players combined for 23 points and 21 rebounds.

The Jumbos trailed, 30-28, at the break, but outscored the Devils during the second stanza, 30-22. Tufts began pulling away late in the second half when Kanner recorded a layup with 8:07 remaining. North netted back-to-back free throws that pushed the Jumbos ahead 47-42, but the Devils did close the gap with a pair of free throws from Delisha Thompson and a layup by Brown with 5:27 remaining.

Both teams traded baskets over the next few minutes before Dillon sank a trifecta with 3:34 left, which was followed by one Emma Roberson free throw. Dillon clinched the victory with 55 seconds remaining, sinking one of two free throws. Kanner also converted one free throw before Tufts’ Josie Lee collected the game’s final rebound – a missed free throw – that sealed the win.

Tufts will take on Thomas More next Friday, March 20 in Grand Rapids, Michigan for a chance to contend for the National Championship on Saturday, March 21. Tip off is scheduled for 5:00 p.m.

George Fox and Montclair State will tangle in the second semifinal at 7 p.m. with the winner advance to the following day’s title round.

Mass. College Hoops: WACBA Honor Roll (Week 14)


WORCESTER, Mass. – With the regular season and some conference tournaments in the books for most teams, it is time to unveil our final Worcester Area College Basketball Association (WACBA) Honor Roll for the 2014-15 season.

Men’s Player of the Week: Malcolm Miller (Holy Cross, Sr./Laytonsville, Md.): Miller led the Crusaders in scoring in both games this week. He had 17 points in the victory over Loyola and followed that up with a career-high 30 points at Boston University. In the Loyola game, Miller hit two free throws with 24.8 seconds remaining to put Holy Cross up 61-60. After Loyola missed a shot on its next possession, he grabbed the rebound and hit two more free throws to conclude the scoring. In the Boston University game, with Holy Cross up 53-51 with 8:34 left to go, Miller hit three-pointers on three of Holy Cross’ next four possessions, one of which he converted into a four-point play, to put the Crusaders up 64-53.

Men’s Rookie of the Week: Chris Rodgers (WPI, Fr./Franklin, Mass.): Rodgers was easily WPI’s most dynamic player in the Engineers’ NEWMAC Tournament semifinal tilt against Springfield. The rookie came off the bench and tallied 11 of his 12 points in the second half. Rodgers, who missed his career-high in points by one, also had two of the Crimson and Gray’s four steals on the day.

Women’s Player of the Week: Raquel Scott (Holy Cross, Jr./Ridgewood, N.J.): Scott played well in helping the Crusaders pick up two Patriot League wins and secure the No. 3 seed in the upcoming conference tournament. She averaged 10.5 points, 9.0 rebounds, 6.5 assists and 2.0 steals per game last week. During Wednesday’s win at Loyola, Scott recorded her 12th double-double of the season with 14 points and 11 rebounds in 20 minutes of action. In Saturday’s win over Boston University, Scott filled the stat sheet with seven points, seven rebounds, four steals and a career-high nine assists. Scott ranks second in the Patriot League with 9.7 rebounds per game and fourth in the conference with 16.6 points per contest. Scott moved into 22nd place on the Holy Cross all-time scoring list with 1,105 career points. She now has 31 double-doubles in her career and ranks sixth in school history with 742 career rebounds.

Women’s Rookie of the Week: Infiniti Thomas (Holy Cross, Fr./Newton, Mass.): Thomas-Waheed averaged 8.0 points, 7.0 rebounds, 1.5 assists and 1.5 steals per game last week in helping Holy Cross earn two Patriot League wins. At Loyola, she totaled eight points and tied a career-high with eight rebounds. Thomas also recorded two steals and two blocked shots against the Greyhounds. In Saturday’s victory over Boston University, Thomas-Waheed posted eight points, six rebounds and three assists. Thomas-Waheed is averaging 5.6 points and 3.2 rebounds per game this season.

Honor Roll:

Kelli McPherson (Worcester State, Sr./Mansfield, Mass.): Averaged 12.0 points and 2.0 steals with eight three-pointers in a 1-1 week for Worcester State which included 15 points on five trifectas in a 78-63 MASCAC Quarterfinal win over Salem State.

Charles Gunter (Worcester State, Sr./Boston, Mass.): Registered a double-double effort with 15 points and 11 rebounds in a 74-63 overtime setback to Fitchburg State in the MASCAC Tournament quarterfinals.

Mass. College Hoops: AIC Basketball Advance to NE-10 Semifinal

By Matt Noonan 

The Northeast-10 Conference basketball tournaments (men and women’s basketball) is all set for this week as eight teams – four men and four women – punched their ticket to the semifinal.

As announced this evening on Twitter (@TheNortheast10), the men’s basketball semifinal will take place on Wednesday, while the women’s basketball semifinal will occur on Thursday. American International College (@aicathletics) is the only local team that will be competing for the conference crown.

Here are the tweets from the conference about this week’s semifinal pairings:

AIC’s men’s basketball team will travel to Manchester, New Hampshire to take on top-seed Southern New Hampshire University on Wednesday, March 4 at 7:00 p.m., while the women’s team heads to West Haven, Connecticut on Thursday, March 5 for a 7:00 p.m. tip against second-seed University of New Haven.

Mass. College Hoops: Babson, Tufts Capture Respective Conference Crowns

By Matt Noonan 

On Sunday afternoon, the Babson College and Tufts University women’s basketball teams each captured their respective conference crowns, while earning automatic-bids to the upcoming NCAA Division III Tournament that commences later this week.

The Beavers defeated Wheaton College in Springfield by a score of 77-51, while the Jumbos topped Bowdoin College at home by a score of 68-52.

Babson Captures Sixth NEWMAC Crown in Seven Seasons: Linnett Graber stuffed the stat sheet with seven points, nine rebounds, five assists and one steal, while Taylor Russell poured in a game-and-team-high 16 points as the Beavers overcame a regular season setback to the Lyons.

Babson led Wheaton, 42-18, at the break before tacking on 35 points during the second stanza. The Lyons rallied by netting 33 points in the second half, including nine points from Abbie Brickley and eight points from Kiley Shoemaker. Laura Pierce netted a team-high 12 points for the Blue and White, while Shoemaker pulled down a game-high 14 rebounds.

The Beavers, who entered the tournament as the fourth seed, earned a trip to the finals by defeating WPI and host Springfield in the quarterfinal and semifinal rounds, respectively. Wheaton’s road to the championship began with a quarterfinal victory over Emerson College before they defeated U.S. Coast Guard Academy yesterday in the semifinal.

Jennifer Narlee added 10 points for the Green and White, while Erin Young connected on three of seven shots from beyond the arc.

Tufts wins Second-Straight NESCAC crown: Four Jumbos registered double-digits, including 16 points from Emma Roberson as Tufts defended its tournament crown from one year ago.

Tufts led Bowdoin, 28-22, at the break before netting 40 points in the second half to secure their 26th win of the season.

Roberson scored 11 of her 16 points during the final 20 minutes, while Michela North, Hayley Kanner and Josie Lee netted 14, 12 and 12 points, respectively. Kelsey Morehead came off the bench and poured in seven points, while Melissa Baptista – also came off the bench – added two points, one rebound and one block.