By Matt Noonan
Yesterday marked the beginning of the final weeks of the Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC) basketball regular season.
On the men’s side, Endicott, Nichols and Wentworth are in a three-way tie for first-place, while University of New England occupies the top spot in the women’s standings.
All four teams return to action on Saturday, including Nichols and Wentworth, which will compete in Dudley at 12 p.m. A win for either team would keep them in first place, while Endicott would set-up a two-way tie with a victory against Eastern Nazarene.
Nichols defeated Wentworth earlier this season, claiming a five-point victory (82-77) on the road. Marcos Echevarria paced all scorers with 25 points, while Kyle Romich led Wentworth with 24 points.
Since their victory against the Leopards, Nichols has won eight of nine, including an 80-74 victory earlier this week against Salve Regina. Wentworth has won three-straight, including a two-point win against Endicott last week. Against Gordon on Tuesday, Jason Ganley netted a program-record 39 points.
Endicott has rebounded since their 77-75 setback to Wentworth, winning back-to-back games against Gordon and University of New England. Against the Nor’Easters, Max Motroni and Kamahl Walker collaborated for 43 points to guide the Gulls to the squad’s 10th win of the season.
UNE women’s basketball enters this weekend’s matchup against Western New England on a seven-game winning streak. On Tuesday against the Gulls, Olivia Shaw and Alicia Brown registered double-figures, tallying 18 and 16 points, respectively. As a team, they collaborated for 15 of 22 free throws, while converting four of six trifectas.