Tag: Clarkson University

Catching Up With Brandon Linton (Nichols College Men’s Basketball)

Brandon Linton was recently named the 20th men’s basketball coach in Nichols College program history. (PHOTO COURTESY: Nichols College Athletics)

By NoontimeSports.com | @NoontimeSports

Last month, Nichols College announced the hiring of Brandon Linton, who becomes the 20th men’s basketball coach in program history.

Linton arrived at the Dudley, Massachusetts campus after spending the past five seasons as an assistant coach at Army West Point where he helped the Cadets with numerous tasks, including scouting reports to working with the wing players at practice to assisting with in-game strategy.

Before assisting the Army West Point men’s basketball program, Linton spent time as an assistant at both his alma mater, Clarkson University, and Bowdoin College.

Coaching a program like Nichols certainly intrigued Linton, who is excited “to continue building on what has already been established” with the Nichols men’s basketball program.

“The chance to take over a program that represents excellence, both on and off of the basketball court was important to me,” said Linton when asked about becoming the new men’s basketball coach at Nichols. “Also, the growth potential of the program was equally intriguing, (as well).”

Nichols concluded its 2018-19 season with an impressive 28-3 mark. The Bison advanced to the quarterfinals of the NCAA Division III Tournament earlier this year, thanks to postseason victories against Amherst CollegeMiddlebury College, and Rowan University.

Additionally, Nichols also captured the 2019 Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC) title with a 105-90 victory over Gordon College.

Noontime Sports recently caught-up with Coach Linton to discuss his excitement for the upcoming season.

As a former Division III, men’s basketball player did you always want to coach or become a head coach at this particular level? 

Absolutely.  I had the great fortune to play for Adam Stockwell during my first three years at Clarkson. I remember sitting in his office as a freshman and sophomore, and him telling me that I would be a college basketball coach one day.  Prior to that, I had casually thought about the idea of it, but after (those conversations) I began to own that reality. Everything I’ve done since was aimed at this goal of becoming a Division III head coach.

What do you know about the Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC)? Are you excited to coach in a very competitive league? 

I’m extremely excited to coach in this league.  I know that it is made up of high-level coaches that have built some of the best and most competitive programs in New England.  The talent across the board is impressive and something that I notice has improved since my departure from Division III.  This is a conference that I believe should be a multiple bid league to the NCAA tournament (every season). I look forward to the challenge of being in that mix.

How did your experience with Army West Point shape you into the coach you are today? 

I couldn’t be more grateful for my time at Army.  The development that I was able to take part in both on and off of the basketball court was truly remarkable.  It is the preeminent leadership development institution in the world. From the faculty to the cadets and all the variety of guest speakers that came through West Point, it truly was a hub for leadership development.

Basketball-wise, being able to coach at the Division I level just provides an amazing amount of time that you get to spend coaching and teaching the game to your players.  We also fielded a junior varsity team at West Point, which allowed us as (to gain experience) being a head coach as assistants to the varsity. More than anything, being around the people day in and day out was the number one takeaway that I believe will shape me into the coach I am and hope to be.

Great coaches are great leaders. And great leaders are great people first.

Coach Brandon Linton inherits a Nichols College men’s basketball team that finished the 2018-19 season with an impressive 28-3 record. (PHOTO COURTESY: Nichols College Athletics)

What are some of the biggest goals/objectives you (and the men’s basketball program) hope to accomplish between now and the team’s first practice? 

The biggest thing will be developing the framework for meaningful relationships with each other. That is from new staff to players and vice versa. It will also be amongst the current players as well. Acclimating the newcomers into the fold, while also continuing to develop even stronger bonds with your returning teammates (will be a must, as well). That will be our biggest focus prior to our first practice on October 15th.

A few quick-hitters, beginning with your all-time favorite memory of playing basketball. 

Without a doubt, it has to be back in 2008 when I was a part of Clarkson’s first-ever Liberty League (LL) championship. We advanced to the NCAA Tournament as a fourth-seed in our conference’s tournament, which made it even sweeter.

Legitimately, no one believed we could get it done because there was honestly no prior reason to think so, but only the individuals in our locker room believed (we could win a conference championship) and that’s all that mattered. It’s something that has stuck with me ever since (and proves what) the power of belief can accomplish.

Who was a player you idolized growing up? 

Tracy McGrady. Unfortunately for me, my teammates and coaches, however, I played nothing like McGrady, but when I got to college, I really enjoyed watching Rajon Rondo when he first started playing for the Boston Celtics. I enjoyed watching Rondo as a student-athlete with the Celtics – he was a big part of their resurgence. I played the point for Clarkson and I really respected how he played that position. And that’s probably why my three-point percentage was what it was, too.

Finally, if you could coach any basketball player, both current or past, who would it be and why? 

Growing up in New York City, I was and still am a big fan of the New York Knicks. We’ve fallen on hard times for a good 15-20 years, however, as a kid, there were some awesome teams for me to follow.

I fell in love with basketball by watching John Starks play.  I would always wear his number (three) whenever I could in youth tournaments and recreational leagues.  The passion and swag that he played with was everything to me. He embodied what it meant to be a New Yorker, as well. He was hard-nosed, did whatever it took for the greater good of the team, and took the challenge of guarding the best players on the other team. He also jacked three-pointers, too, which was still a newer thing for the game during the 1990s.

John Starks is definitely someone I would love to coach.

Stay connected with our New England basketball coverage by following @Noontime_Hoops on Twitter! 

New England College Notebook: WNE Starts Women’s Ice Hockey, Nichols Names Linton Men’s Basketball Coach


By NoontimeSports.com | @NoontimeSports

Just hours before the Boston Bruins and St. Louis Blues squared-off in the seventh game of the 2019 Stanley Cup FinalsWestern New England announced some exciting news that they would be adding women’s ice hockey, the school’s 20th varsity sport, during the 2020-21 school year.

The exciting news of the school adding women’s ice hockey was shared by Matt LaBranche, Western New England’s Director of Athletics, Recreational Sport & Physical Education, who looking forward to seeing the team compete in 2020.

“Interest at the high school and youth levels has never been higher, and we are proud to be providing a new opportunity for those young women to pursue their passion in a highly competitive collegiate program,” said LaBranche in Wednesday’s press release about the women’s ice hockey team.

LaBranche also announced the hiring of Katie Zimmerman, who becomes the first head coach in the program’s history. Zimmerman previously served as an assistant at nearby Amherst College and has prior coaching experience with USA Hockey and SUNY Cortland.

Zimmerman also played Division III hockey for Hamilton College in the New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC)

According to Wednesday’s release, Western New England will join 66 other colleges that sponsor women’s ice hockey at the Division III level.

Nichols College announced on Thursday that Brandon Linton has been named the 20th men’s basketball coach in program history.

Linton replaces Scott Faucher, who guided the Bison to 28-3 record this past winter, including an appearance in the NCAA Division III sectional finals (elite eight).

Faucher was recently named the new men’s basketball coach at Assumption College.

Linton arrives in Dudley after spending the past five seasons as an assistant coach at Army West Point where he “was responsible for the development of scouting reports on opponents and managing the scout team,” along with additional duties, as well.

“Nichols College is a special institution that offers a world-class experience for our student-athletes both on and off of the court,” said Linton in Thursday’s release. “I cannot wait to begin the process of getting to know our current players and continuing to build on the foundation they have created.”

Linton is no stranger to Division III basketball as he played for Clarkson University in the Liberty League (LL) and spent time as an assistant under coach Tim Gilbride at Bowdoin College.

Finally, congratulations to former Babson College men’s ice hockey assistant coach Chris Zimmerman, who recently celebrated a Stanley Cup championship on Wednesday evening with the St. Louis Blues.

Zimmerman, who President and CEO of Business Operations for the Blues, played hockey at the University of Vermont in the Hockey East before pursuing his MBA at Babson.

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Mass. College Hockey: BU 5, Clarkson 3 (NCAA Quarterfinals)

By Matt Noonan 

BOSTON, MA – Sarah Lefort secured Boston University a spot in next weekend’s Frozen Four when she deposited her second strike of the afternoon into an open net during the third period as the Terriers defeated Clarkson University, 5-3 in the NCAA quarterfinals.

BU, which will appear in its second Frozen Four in program history, will face-off against Mercyhurst, who edged Cornell University earlier today by one tally.

“I thought it was a great hockey game with an unbelievable amount of intensity,” BU coach Brian Durocher said. “Clarkson’s a big-body team, they play a somewhat of a conservative style, but you wouldn’t have known it today with almost 40 shots on net.”

The Terriers led the Golden Knights by one entering the final stanza, but padded their lead with two goals in a span of 26 seconds. Lefort pushed the hosts ahead by two before Louise Warren extended the lead to three after she deposited a rebound chance by Isabel Menard.

Clarkson, though, didn’t fold, but responded with two tallies from Christine Lambert and Shannon MacAulay, which brought the Golden Knights within one with 4:40 remaining in regulation.

BU called a timeout, regrouped and watched Lefort force a turnover that led to the game-clinching strike, which sealed the Terriers third NCAA tournament victory.

“I think we all wanted to win,” said BU’s Marie-Philip Poulin, who finished the contest with one goal and one assist.

“We just wanted to go out there the first five minutes and put pressure on them and we got a couple of goals and they came back in the third, (we) got a bit nervous, but (we managed to get) the win and we’re happy with that.”

Poulin netted the game’s first goal late in the first before Clarkson answered early in the second with an Erin Ambrose strike. The Terriers responded with Jenelle Kohanchuck, who lit the lamp late in the middle frame to provide BU with the lead for good.

A Strong Defensive Performance: For the second week in a row, the Terriers defense managed to fend off their opponent’s power play.

Last weekend, they denied Northeastern University six chances with an extra skater during the Hockey East conference championship game, and today they prevented Clarkson from finding the back of the net five times.

“I think we were focusing on every little battle, trying to win the puck (and) trying to win it out of the corner,” said Lefort. “(We were) definitely picking up sticks on the (penalty kill), but just keeping some things simple and communicating with each other really helped us out today.”

“It’s the third game in a row where we’ve had to do a good job killing penalties and so far we have in those three games,” said Durocher. “It’s great to know that the kids could get the job done and it’s not just the five skaters or four skaters that are killing, but Kerrin Sperry, (who assisted) with one of the kills in the second period.”

Sperry was certainly a factor in the second period when she deflected multiple shots in the slot before the Terriers whipped the puck out of the zone.

BU’s power was a major factor in their conference’s tournament as they also denied 13 combined chances by Connecticut and Providence, too.

The Streak Continues: BU’s victory marked their ninth consecutive win since falling to Harvard University in the Boston Beanpot consolation game on Feb. 12, 2013. Since that loss, the Terriers have been on a roll, winning nine games, which includes three conference tournament victories and a first round match.

Will their streak continue next weekend? Who knows, but all Durocher hopes is that the momentum remains with the Red and White.

“It’s a real positive situation for us, but I like to think that anybody who gets to this point, whether they’re on a one-game streak or whatever it is, they’ve got momentum,” said the BU coach.

“I just think that next week it starts from scratch and the two games are going to be real good hockey games and whoever comes up on top is probably going to be somebody that plays well that day and maybe the hockey Gods are with them as well.”

Mass. College Hockey: BU-Clarkson Face-Off In NCAA Quarterfinals

BU's Marie-Philip Poulin leads the Terriers into the NCAA quarterfinals with 49 points (16 goals, 33 assists). (Photo Credit: BU Today/Steve McLaughlin)
BU’s Marie-Philip Poulin will lead the Terriers into the NCAA quarterfinals against Clarkson University with a team-best 49 points (16 goals, 33 assists). (Photo Credit: BU Today/Steve McLaughlin)

By NoontimeSports.com 

Noontime Sports will be covering this afternoon’s NCAA quarterfinal women’s ice hockey match between Boston University and Clarkson University, which commences are 3 p.m. at the Walter Brown Arena.

Social Media Coverage: Follow today’s game on Twitter (@NoontimeSports or @NoonSportsBlog) and Facebook (Facebook.com/NoonSports).

Terriers path to the tourney: BU (26-5-3), who is ranked third in the country, earned an automatic bid by defeating Northeastern University last weekend in the Hockey East conference championship, 5-2. The Terriers victory marked their third consecutive conference crown, too.

Golden Knights path to the tourney: Clarkson (28-9) received a bid for the tournament despite falling to Harvard University in last weekend’s ECAC semifinals. The Golden Knights are making their second appearance in the tournament, their last visit occurred in 2010.

Series History: The Golden Knights are 1-2-1 all-time against the Terriers. And in their last meeting, both squads skated to a 2-2 tie on Oct. 21, 2011 in Potsdam, New York.

Winner advances to Frozen Four: The winner of this afternoon’s contest will face-off against the winner of Cornell University-Mercyhurst next Friday in Minneapolis in the Frozen Four.

For more information on the Terriers – HOP HERE

For more information on the Golden Knights – HOP HERE

For the tournament’s bracket – HOP HERE