Catching Up With Curry College Men’s Basketball Coach Joe Busacca

Busacca_1_500x500
Joe Busacca was recently named the new men’s basketball coach at Curry College. (PHOTO CREDIT: Curry College Athletics)

By NoontimeSports.com | @NoontimeSports 

Last month, Curry College announced Joe Busacca will be taking over the Colonels men’s basketball program.

Busacca, who played college basketball at Misericordia, arrives to the Milton, Massachusetts campus following a two-year stint with the Manhattanville men’s basketball team.

At Manhattanville, Busacca was instrumental in helping Knights first-year Sean Smith become this past winter’s MAC Freedom Rookie of the Year.

Noontime Sports recently caught-up with the new coach of the Colonels to discuss his excitement for the upcoming 2018-19 season, which begins on Saturday, Nov. 10 when Curry hosts Rivier with tip-off scheduled for 6 p.m.

What interested you in becoming the next head coach of the Curry men’s basketball team? 

The biggest draw for me was the culture and the atmosphere that surround the school and the athletic department. I fell in love with the people and the facilities when I initially stepped on campus. The facilities here are at Curry, in my eyes, are one of the best in D3 athletics. It’s an exciting time to be a part of Curry College and I am extremely fortunate to be attached to this community

What do you know about Curry or the Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC)? 

I have become pretty familiar with the CCC, specifically the competitive nature of the conference. I have had the pleasure of seeing Nichols, Roger Williams and Western New England play during my two years at Manhattanville College. Having a nationally ranked team like Nichols in our conference is incredible. There is nothing like conference play and I’m excited to go up against some great coaches and teams in this conference.

It may sound cliche, but what got you into coaching? Also, who has helped shape/mold you into the coach you are currently?

I would say it was two things: playing basketball at Misericordia and being around my former head coach Trevor Woodruff. I did not know how much time and effort went into the daily grind, but I absolutely love it. From in-depth scouting reports to practice plans to skill and development session to watching film helped me realize how much I wanted to stay involved with the game of basketball.

Coach Woodruff demanded perfection from all of us, but he was extremely approachable when it came to dealing with any issue, both on or off the court. Coach Woodruff is still someone that I stay connected with and my hope is if I can become half of the coach he is, then I know I am doing something right.

Being from New York, what do you know about New England basketball?

New England basketball has some extremely smart the players. Their IQ is on another level and it is something that I absolutely fell in love with while recruiting prospective players to Manhattanville. I am really looking forward to centering my recruiting classes around the six New England states.

What is the biggest priority for a new basketball coach with taking over a program?

Developing relationships. It is so important to develop relationships with the athletic department, the college’s administration and alumni, along with high school and AAU coaches, too. Additionally, I look forward to building relationships with parents and prospective student-athletes, as well. And by building these relationships, it will help elevate our program to new heights.

What is one of the biggest goals for both you/the team between now and mid-October, so you can get off and running?

I hate to sound redundant, but my biggest goal is to develop relationships with each members of our program.  It’s so important for me to gain these guys’ trust and show them I care for them outside of the gym. Without built-in trust, the season can become long, as well as be seen as more of a job than something that should be fun. If we have that built-in trust by mid-October then we will be in for a very special year.

Being from New York, how do you feel about being in Boston sports territory? Will you eventually become a Boston/New England sports fan?

I think the correct answer to this question is yes, of course I will embrace the teams out here in Boston. But being a life-long New York KnicksNew York Jets and St. John’s fan, I am not sure if I am ready to switch allegiances. Perhaps I can be persuaded to become a fan of the Boston Bruins or Boston Red Sox, though.

All-time favorite basketball movie is …?

Through the Fire. Being from New York, I was enamored with Sebastian Telfair; he was one of the best high school basketball players ever to play in my home state. His story from high school to the NBA was incredible.

Finally, who is your all-time favorite basketball player and why?

LeBron James. I know this answer may not be popular in the New England or Boston, but the way he goes about the game is incredible. The way he is able to take over a game in more than one way is a truly special gift. In a world where athletes’ mistakes are blasted all over the news, you never seem to hear any bad publicity attached to his name. I love the fact that he married his high school girlfriend, goes to his sons’ travel basketball games, and sends kids to colleges through his foundation.


Stay connected with Noontime Sports’ basketball coverage on Twitter by following @Noontime_Hoops

Report: Coach Engelstad To Be Named Mount Saint Mary’s Men’s Basketball Coach

basketballBy Matt Noonan (@MattNoonan11) 

According to various sources, along with recent reports this morning, Mount Saint Mary’s is expected to hire Dan Engelstad as its next men’s basketball coach.

Engelstad is expected to replace Jamion Christian, who recently accepted the head coaching position at Siena College, per last week’s release from the school’s athletic department.

As noted in Kyle McFadden‘s piece on Medium.com last night, a source told him that Engelstad will be tabbed the program’s 22nd head coach on Wednesday.

In addition to McFadden, other reporters, including Rob Dauster and Tim Murray have also confirmed via their sources that Engelstad will become the program’s next head coach, too.

Since taking over the Southern Vermont College men’s basketball program five years ago, Engelstad has compiled an impressive record of 104-34. He guided the Mountaineers this past season to a 22-6 ledger, which included a trip to the NCAA Division III Tournament and New England Collegiate Conference (NECC) Tournament crown.

Prior to taking over the SVC men’s basketball team, Engelstad spent time as an assistant coach at Mount Saint Mary’s and Holy Cross. As noted in his bio on the SVC website, Engelstad was the youngest Division I coach during the 2007-08 season.

D3 Hoops: Noontime Sports Women’s Basketball 2018 End Of The Year Awards

NS TEAM OF THE YEAR

By NoontimeSports.com (@NoontimeSports) 

With another season of New England D3 Basketball in the books, it is time to dish out our end of the year Noontime Sports Women’s Basketball awards, including our Coach, Player and Rookie of the Year, along with our first, second and third teams.

As always, stay connected with us on Facebook and Twitter – also, make sure to follow our brand new basketball handle on Twitter at @Noontme_Hoops!


Kate Kerrigan POY BOWDWomen’s Player of the Year: Kate Kerrigan (Bowdoin College): Kate Kerrigan enjoyed an extremely impressive senior season with the Polar Bears as she guided the program to its second appearance in the national semifinals last weekend. Tabbed the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA) Division III National Player of the Year last week, Kerrigan concluded her time in Maine by becoming the only player in Bowdoin women’s basketball history to tally more than 900 points, 600 rebounds, 300 assists and 200 steals in a career. In addition to being honored by the WBCA, she was also named the NESCAC Player of the Year, NESCAC Defensive Player of the Year, the NEWBA Player of the Year and the D3hoops.com Northeast Region Player of the Year.


JOIE Grassi ROY UMASSWomen’s Rookie of the Year: Joie Grassi (UMass Boston): Joie Grassi enjoyed an impressive first season with the Beacons, averaging 15.7 points and 7.3 rebounds in 29 games. She guided the Blue and White to its first-ever Little East Conference (LEC) Tournament Championship last month as UMass Boston stunned top-seed UMass Dartmouth. Grassi was tabbed the LEC Tournament’s Most Outstanding Player after netting 26 points, while pulling down nine rebounds in her team’s win over the Corsairs. Grassi earned seven LEC Rookie of the Week honors, while tallying a team-best six double-doubles. Grassi was tabbed the D3Hoops.com Northeast Region Co-Rookie of the Year, while also earning a spit on the Northeast Region’s Fourth Team. Grassi joined senior Lydia Vital on the LEC First Team – she also accompanied classmate Shania Osborne on the conference’s All-Rookie Team.


GP Gromacki AMHERST COACHWomen’s Coach of the Year: G.P. Gromacki (Amherst College): G.P. Gromacki guided the Mammoths to its second-straight NCAA Division III championship this season, while earning his second consecutive D3Hoops.com Coach of the Year honors. Amherst enjoyed another impressive season, winning 33 consecutive contests, including a national championship and New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) crown. Last weekend marked the third time Gromacki has guided the Mammoths to a national championship – he has led the Purple and White to eight Final Four appearances since arriving in Amherst prior to the start of the 2007-08 season. In addition to being honored by D3Hoops.com, Gromacki earned his third-straight NESCAC Coach of the Year honor prior to the start of this year’s national tournament.


Noontime Sports First-Team

Kate Kerrigan 

Bowdoin College 

Wellesley, Mass. 

Madeline Eck

Amherst College 

Rye, N.Y. 

Hannah Fox

Amherst College

Plymouth Meeting, Pa.

Melissa Baptista

Tufts University

Somerville, Mass.

Kelsi McNamara 

St. Joseph’s (Maine)

Westbury, Mass.


Noontime Sports Second Team

Abby Kelly

Bowdoin College

Bombay, N.Y.

Olivia Bolden 

Albertus Magnus 

South Windsor, Conn.

Alicia Kutil

UMass Dartmouth

Franklin, Mass.

Nakira Examond

UMass Dartmouth

New Bedford, Mass.

Kennedy Guest-Pritchett

Smith College

Fairburn, Ga.


Noontime Sports Third Team

Lauren Dillon 

Tufts University 

Wellesley, Mass.

Mikayla Hodge

Lyndon State 

Newbury, Vt. 

Ama Biney

WPI

Worcester, Mass.

Payton Ouimette
 

Babson College

Medfield, Mass.

Mary Kate O’Day

Framingham State

Berlin, Mass.


Noontime Sports All-Rookie Team

Joie Grassi 

UMass Boston

Plymouth, Mass. 

Kristen Curley 

Southern Maine 

Gorham, Maine 

Emily Briggs

Tufts University 

Canton, Conn.

Kylie Gallagher

MIT

Upton, Mass.

Jaymesha Sanders

Newbury College

West Haven, Conn.

Mikayla Pucci

Wheaton College

Hopkinton, Mass.

Mikaela Mitchell 

Fitchburg State 

Millbury, Mass.

D3 Hoops: Noontime Sports Men’s Basketball 2018 End Of The Year Awards

NS TEAM OF THE YEAR

By NoontimeSports.com (@NoontimeSports) 

With another season of New England D3 Basketball in the books, it is time to dish out our end of the year Noontime Sports Men’s Basketball awards, including our Coach, Player and Rookie of the Year, along with our first, second and third teams.

As always, stay connected with us on Facebook and Twitter – also, make sure to follow our brand new basketball handle on Twitter at @Noontme_Hoops!


Jake Ross POY 2018
Men’s Player of the Year: Jake Ross (Springfield College): Jake Ross enjoyed an impressive sophomore season with the Pride, earning a slew of postseason accolades, including the New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) Men’s Basketball Athlete of the Year and Co-Defensive Player of the Year. In addition to earning a spot on the NEWMAC All-Conference First Team, Ross also received recognition from D3Hoops.com as the Northeast Player of the Year. He also earned a spot on the All-Northeast Region First Team, too. Ross concluded his second season by averaging 24.8 points and 9.8 rebounds per game. He netted a career-high 39 points earlier this season against Wheaton College (Jan. 24th, 2018), while also recorded a career-best 10 assists against Coast Guard Academy seven days later (Jan. 31st, 2018).


Austin Hutcherson SHARPMen’s Rookie of the Year: Austin Hutcherson (Wesleyan University): Tabbed the New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) Rookie of the Year, Austin Hutcherson enjoyed an impressive debut with the Cardinals by averaging 12.0 points, 3.7 rebounds, 2.7 assists, 1.2 steals, and 0.8 blocks per game. He was recently selected as the 2018 D3hoops.com Northeast Co-Rookie of the Year alongside Hamilton Forsythe of MIT. Hutcherson started in 26 of 29 contests this season, netting double-figures in 16 of 29 contests. Hutcherson’s play helped Wesleyan enjoy a very successful campaign, which saw the Cardinals conclude the 2017-18 season with a program-record 22 wins. The Cardinals secured the Little Three title with key regular season victories over Amherst College and Williams College, while earning appearances in both the NESCAC championships and NCAA Tournament.

 


Charlie Brock COACH SPRMen’s Coach of the Year: Charlie Brock (Springfield College): Coach Charlie Brock led the Pride on an exciting postseason journey this month, which included a quartet of playoff victories, including three against nationally-ranked opponents. Brock guided the Pride to a first place finish in the New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) regular season, while earning his initial D3Hoops.com Northeast Coach of the Year honor seven days ago.


Noontime Sports First-Team

Jake Ross

Springfield College

Northampton, Mass.

Tarchee Brown

Eastern Conn. State

Rockville, Conn. 

James Heskett 

Williams College

Cincinnati, Ohio

Jack Daly

Middlebury College

Eastchester, N.Y.

Jaqhawn Walters 

Albertus Magnus 

Hartford, Conn.


Noontime Sports Second Team 

Kena Gilmour

Hamilton College

New Paltz, N.Y.

Marcos Echevarria

Nichols College

    Lynn, Mass. 

Bradley Jomard

MIT

Paris, France

Keith Brown

Endicott College

Pelham, N.H.

AJ Jurko

MIT

 Weston, Fla.

Noontime Sports Third Team

Raheem Anderson

Husson University

Miramar, Fla.

Ty Nichols

Keene State 

Springfield, Mass.

Johnny McCarthy

Amherst College

Medfield, Mass. 

Bobby Casey

Williams College

Scranton, PA

Nick Comenale 

Babson College 

New York Mills, N.Y.


Noontime Sports All-Rookie Team

Austin Hutcherson

Wesleyan University

Freehold, N.J.

Hamilton Forsythe

MIT

Weston, Conn.

James Anozie

Keene State

Poughkeepsie, N.Y.

Michael Boyd

UMass Boston

Malden, Mass. 

Noah Yearsley

MCLA

Averill Park, N.Y.

Zach Tavitian

Western New England

Milford, Conn.

Jake Ashworth

UMass Dartmouth 

Fairhaven, Mass.

WACBA Hoops: Holy Cross’ Manis and Nichols’ Echevarria Headline 2018 All-WACBA Awards

WACBABy WACBA Hoops (@WACBAHoops)

WORCESTER, Mass. – Holy Cross sophomore Lauren Manis and Nichols junior Marcos Echevarria headline the All-WACBA scrolls as the Worcester Area College Basketball Association revealed its 2017-18 awards Wednesday in Jen Toland’s weekly college column. Voters included sports information directors or primary contacts from each of the nine NCAA schools in Worcester County, including Division I Holy Cross and Division II Assumption, as well as members of the local media.

In a close vote, Manis was named the WACBA Women’s Player of the Year. Fitchburg State’s Mikaela Mitchell claimed Rookie of the Year honors while Becker head coach David Bostick, who shared last year’s accolades, repeated as Coach of the Year. Nichols earned two of the three men’s major awards as Echevarria and head coach Tom Glynn, the recipient of 10 first place votes, repeated as Player and Coach of the Year, respectively. Assumption’s Matthew Kelly was selected as the men’s Rookie of the Year.

Manis also made the All-WACBA First Team for the second consecutive year, as did Becker sophomore Cassidy Harrison, Worcester State junior Britt Herring and WPI senior Ama Biney. Fellow Crusader, senior Infiniti Thomas-Waheed was upgraded from last year’s second team while Assumption junior Morgan O’Donnell made her debut on the scroll. Clark junior Ogechi Ezemma and Becker junior Adrianna Dowdy headlined the second team. They were joined by Anna Maria senior Kristina Russo, Fitchburg State sophomore Angelina Marazzi, Worcester State sophomore Catherine Sweeney and WPI senior Madison Beck.

Echevarria, who was on the top half of all 12 ballots, and sophomore teammate DeAnte Bruton, as well as Anna Maria sophomore Mike Rapoza and Becker senior Samuel Durodola were all named to the All-WACBA First Team for the second year in-a-row. Becker junior Kareem Davis moved up to the first team while Holy Cross junior Jehyve Floyd also earned top billing. WPI senior Chris Rodgers led the second team that also featured Kelly, Clark junior Luca McCormick, Fitchburg State junior Jonathan Perez, Nichols sophomore Jerome Cunningham and Worcester State sophomore Shaun McCarthy.

WACBA (Worcester Area College Basketball Association) is an organization billed as “one of its kind in the country” featuring nine colleges, 18 programs plus sports information directors and media members to foster friendships and camaraderie along with promoting the GREAT GAME OF BASKETBALL throughout the TRADITION RICH Worcester Country Area.


WACBA Women’s Basketball End of The Year Awards

Player of the Year: Lauren Manis (Franklin, Mass.), Holy Cross

Rookie of the Year: Mikaela Mitchell (Millbury, Mass.), Fitchburg State

Coach of the Year: David Bostick, Becker

First Team

Assumption

Morgan O’DonnellEaston, Mass.Jr.

Becker

Cassidy HarrisonFoxborough, Mass.So.
Holy CrossInfiniti Thomas-WaheedNewton, Mass.Sr.
Holy CrossLauren ManisFranklin, Mass.So.
Worcester StateBritt HerringWest Brookfield, Mass.Jr.
WPIAma BineyWorcester, Mass.Sr.

Second Team

Anna MariaKristina RussoSouth Windsor, Conn.Sr.
BeckerAdrianna DowdyEast Haven Conn.Jr.
ClarkOgechi EzemmaHope Valley, R.I.Jr.
Fitchburg StateAngelina MarazziManchester, N.H.So.
Worcester StateCatherine SweeneyLowell, Mass.So.
WPIMadison BeckSyracuse, N.Y.Sr.

WACBA Men’s Basketball End of The Year Awards

Player of the Year: Marcos Echevarria (Lynn, Mass.), Nichols

Rookie of the Year: Matthew Kelly (North Potomac, Md.), Assumption

Coach of the Year:
Tom Glynn, Nichols

First Team

Anna MariaMike RapozaCharlton, Mass.So.
BeckerKareem DavisLowell, MassJr.
BeckerSamuel DurodolaRosedale, N.Y.Sr.
Holy CrossJehyve FloydSayreville, N.J.Jr.
NicholsDeAnte BrutonNew London, Conn.So.
NicholsMarcos EchevarriaLynn, Mass.Jr.

Second Team

AssumptionMatthew KellyNorth Potomac, Md.Fr.
ClarkLuca McCormickFort Lauderdale, Fla.Jr.
Fitchburg StateJonathan PerezLowell, Mass.Jr.
NicholsJerome CunninghamWestbury, N.Y.So.
Worcester StateShaun McCarthyOxford, Mass.So.
WPIChris RodgersFranklin, Mass.Sr.