D3 Basketball: Men’s Basketball Top 10 Poll (Tuesday, March 17th, 2020)

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By NoontimeSports.com | @NoontimeNation

For the second time this month, the Tufts University men’s basketball team secured the top spot in our final New England D-III Men’s Basketball Top 10 Poll followed by Colby College and Springfield College.

The Jumbos, who captured their first-ever New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) tournament title earlier this month, won a pair of NCAA Tournament games, including an exciting (and dramatic) opening-round win over Western Connecticut.

WPI secured the fourth position for the second time this month while Middlebury College switched positions with St. Joseph’s (Conn.). The Panthers advanced to this year’s NCAA Tournament as an at-large bid – they beat Westfield State in the opening round before falling to Brockport in the second round.

The Blue Jays of St. Joseph’s made their initial appearance in the ‘big dance’ under second-year coach Jim Calhoun, who guided the Blue and Yellow to the program’s first-ever Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) championship. Calhoun’s crew lost to Hobart in the opening round of the tournament, but the Blue Jays have a bright future – they will certainly be a team to watch in New England next winter.

Babson College secured the seventh position followed by Amherst CollegeNichols College, and Brandeis University.


New England D-III Basketball Men’s Top 10 Week 15 Poll| Monday, March 17th, 2020

1. Tufts University 23-6, 8-2 NESCAC Previously No. 1
2. Colby College 24-4, 8-2 NESCAC Previously No. 2
3. Springfield College 23-5, 11-1 NEWMAC Previously No. 3
4. WPI 20-8, 10-3 NEWMAC Previously No. 4
5. Middlebury College 21-6, 6-4 NESCAC Previously No. 6
6. St. Joseph’s (Conn.) 26-3, 11-0 GNAC Previously No. 5
7. Babson College 20-7, 10-4 NEWMAC Previously No. 7
8. Amherst College 18-8, 7-3 NESCAC Previously No. 8
9. Nichols College 21-9, 12-4 CCC Previously No. 9
10. Brandeis University 17-8, 9-5 UAA Previously No. 10 

ON THE RISE: Coast Guard Academy, New England College, and Western Connecticut 


Previous Polls: Preseason Poll |Week One| Week Two | Week ThreeWeek Four| Week Five |Week Six |Week Seven |Week Eight|Week Nine | Week Ten|Week 11|Week 12|Week 13Week 14 

Daily Noontime: Wednesday, March 11th, 2020

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By Matt Noonan | @NoontimeNation 

Welcome to Wednesday, everyone – hope you are doing OK this morning (or whenever you are reading this post!).

I’ll do the best to brighten your mood and take your mind off the coronavirus (COVID-19) – I know there is a lot of news and announcements being shared, so allow me to do my very best to change the subject to sports.

Did you watch last night’s Boston Celtics game? If not, I am happy to report that the Green and White defeated the Indiana Pacers, 114-111, and secured a spot in the upcoming NBA playoffs.

Jayson Tatum netted 30 points in the win while Gordon Hayward finished Tuesday’s game with a double-double of 27 points and 10 rebounds.

Boston will compete against the Milwaukee Bucks on Thursday before returning home Friday to play against the Washington Wizards.

Patrice Bergeron and Matt Grzelcyk each netted one goal last night as the Boston Bruins topped the Philadelphia Flyers, 2-0.

With the win, the Black and Gold improve to 44-14-12 overall while the Flyers slip to 41-21-7.

Boston has now won three of their last four outings and will head to New York on Friday to skate against the Buffalo Sabres at 7 p.m.

Last night’s win over the Flyers marked the 50th time Tuukka Rask has recorded a shutout. He stopped 36 shots in his team’s 44th victory of the 2019-20 season.

“It’s a great milestone,” Rask said, via Lauren Campbell of NESN.com.

The 2020 Boston Red Sox season is quickly approaching, which means its time for a prediction. Sports Illustrated believes the Sox will finish third in the American League East Division with a marvelous record of 81-81.

As you (and others) know by now, this weekend’s Ivy League basketball conference tournament has been canceled, which was not the news many student-athletes (and fans) wanted to hear.

“This whole situation is unprecedented,” said Ivy League executive director, Robin Harris, via Bob Hohler of the Boston Globe.

It is unfortunate, but you have to give the Ivy League some credit for not just protecting its student-athletes, coaches, and team representatives, but also its fans, too.

Other leagues, organizations, and teams have begun announcing changes to its upcoming sports schedules, including the Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Association (CIAA), which canceled its remaining winter tournaments.

The New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) announced an update on its website this morning that “the NESCAC Presidents met and concluded unanimously that conference competition, including conference championships, will be canceled for the 2020 spring season.”

We should expect more cancelations and changes to upcoming games over the next few weeks, including the possibility of no fans at future professional games, too.

We’ll be back tomorrow, but in the meantime remember to smile and know we will all get through this together!

Manning On Facing Tufts: “Third Time’s a Charm, Right?”

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Maggie Meehan and the Williams College women’s basketball team will be competing Friday, March 13th in the NCAA “Sweet 16.” (PHOTO COURTESY: Williams College Athletics)

By NoontimeSports.com 

When the NCAA D-III Women’s Basketball Tournament pairings were released last Monday, the thought of Williams College facing Tufts University for the third time this season seemed like a possibility. But it wasn’t a given.

For the Ephs and Jumbos to meet in the “Sweet 16,” both teams needed to win their respective pods, which they did. Tufts beat SUNY Cortland and SUNY Poly while Williams topped Albright College and Ithaca College. And now, the two New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) squads are scheduled to tip-off this Friday, March 13th in Medford, Massachusetts.

When asked about competing against the Jumbos for a third time this season, Williams coach Pat Manning smiled and then said, “Here we go with our third time with Tufts. Hope the third time’s a charm, right?”

Perhaps the third time will be the charm for the Ephs, who have lost twice this winter to the Jumbos, including a six-point setback in the NESCAC semifinals last month, which provided Tufts an opportunity to contend for the conference title against Bowdoin College.

Prior to their meeting in the NESCAC Tournament, Tufts beat Williams on the final Saturday of the regular season by a score of 76-60. Cailin Harrington highlighted the win for the Jumbos with 17 points on five of ten shooting to go with nine rebounds, two assists, and one block while Williams’ Maggie Meehan tallied 17 points, as well, along with one rebound, one assist, and one steal.

Williams, which earned its first trip to the “big dance” in five seasons as an at-large bid, will be making its fifth appearance in the “Sweet 16” on Friday.

Setting The Stage For The First Day of the NCAA D3 Men’s Basketball Tournament

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Jake Ross and the Springfield College men’s basketball team will open the 2020 NCAA D-III Tournament at home against SUNY Canton. (PHOTO COURTESY: Springfield College Athletics)

By Matt Noonan | @NoontimeNation 

We’re just one day away from the start of the 2020 NCAA D-III Men’s Basketball Tournament, which means its time to highlight a few things you need to know about this year’s postseason while also sharing some predictions, too.

Which New England teams will be competing in this year’s NCAA D-III Men’s Basketball Tournament? 

  • This year, there are 13 teams from our region that will begin their respective quests to Atlanta, Georgia tomorrow, including two teams that will be host sites for both the first and second rounds.
  • The teams competing in this year’s tournament are the following: Babson College, Coast Guard Academy, Middlebury College, Westfield State, Tufts University, Western Connecticut, New England College, WPI, Springfield College, University of Saint Joseph’s (Conn.), Nichols College, and Colby College.

What are the first-round matchups, times and locations? 

Here is the schedule for tomorrow’s (Friday, March 6th) first-round schedule:

  • WPI vs. Yeshiva University, 1 p.m. (at Johns Hopkins)
  • New England College vs. RPI, 3:30 p.m. (at Tufts University)
  • Colby College vs. Christopher Newport, 4 p.m. (at Stevens Inst. of Technology)
  • Middlebury College vs. Westfield State, 4 p.m. (at Brockport)
  • Babson College vs. Ithaca College, 5 p.m. (at Swarthmore College)
  • Univ. of Saint Joseph’s (Conn.) vs. Hobart, 5 p.m. (at Springfield College)
  • Western Connecticut at Tufts University, 6 p.m.
  • Coast Guard Academy at Brockport, 6:30 p.m.
  • Nichols College at Stevens Inst. of Technology, 6:30 p.m.
  • SUNY Canton at Springfield College, 7:30 p.m.

Which teams could advance to Saturday’s (March 7th) second round? 

  • Colby College: The Mules face a real tough test tomorrow against a talented Christopher Newport squad. The Captains will certainly challenge Colby from the opening tip, but if the Mules play the way they did against Tufts, as well as against Amherst College and Bates College in the New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) Tournament then I think they will be able to squeak out a first-round win.
  • Middlebury College: The Panthers haven’t played a game since late February, but this isn’t the first time they have had to wait to hear the committee announce their name on ‘Selection Monday.’ The Panthers should be able to beat Westfield State and then find a way to beat either Brockport or Coast Guard Academy in the second round.
  • Springfield College: The Pride of Springfield are equipped and ready to go on a very deep run this month. They should be able to top SUNY Canton on the opening day of the tournament. But can they turn around one day later and beat the University of Saint Joseph’s (Conn.), which is the favorite in their first-round matchup? I think they can.
  • Tufts University: The Jumbos enter the postseason riding some serious momentum, thanks to an exciting double-overtime win on Sunday in the NESCAC Championship. Their momentum will be tested immediately against a talented Western Connecticut squad, which enters the postseason on a seven-game winning streak. If they can beat the Colonials, they will most likely have to beat an RPI squad, which should beat New England College in their opening-round matchup.
  • University of Saint Joseph’s (Conn.): Jim Calhoun and the Blue Jays could be a real tough out. They have not dropped a game since falling to Tufts last November and proved they are a resilient bunch, especially this past weekend against Albertus Magnus in the Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) Championship. The Blue Jays should be able to beat Hobart, but will certainly be tested against Springfield in the second round.

What first-round match-up will I be watching? 

  • WPI vs. Yeshiva. The Engineers face a real tough test in the opening round. And if they are able to beat the Maccabees, who have not dropped a game since falling to Occidental College last November, they will most likely face Johns Hopkins, which is the favorite in their opening round match-up.For WPI to be victorious tomorrow, they will need to play the way they did against Babson last Friday. They will also need big games from Garrett StephensonColin McNamara, and Kahleb Downing.

First-Round Predictions! 

  • Ithaca College over Babson College
  • Brockport over Coast Guard Academy
  • Middlebury College over Westfield State
  • Tufts University over Western Connecticut
  • RPI over New England College
  • Yeshiva University over WPI
  • Springfield College over SUNY Canton
  • St. Joseph (Conn.) over Hobart
  • Stevens Inst. of Technology over Nichols College
  • Colby College over Christopher Newport

D3 Basketball: Men’s Basketball Top 10 Poll (Monday, February 24th, 2020)

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By NoontimeSports.com | @NoontimeNation

For the second-straight week, Springfield College secured the top spot – the Pride, who have won 22 of 25 contests this season are not just the team to beat in the New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference (NEWMAC), but also the region, too.

Springfield will host the winner of Emerson CollegeCoast Guard Academy on Friday, February 28th in what could be an interesting semifinal match-up. A win over either the Lions or Bears would allow Springfield to host the NEWMAC championship two days later on Sunday, March 1st.

Colby College remains the second team on our poll for another week after outlasting Bates College in triple-overtime this past weekend in the opening round of the New England Small College (NESCAC) Tournament. Colby will tip-off against eighth-ranked Amherst College on Saturday, February 29th – the winner will face either third-ranked Tufts University or tenth-ranked Trinity College in the NESCAC Championship on Sunday.

Fourth-ranked Babson College and seventh-ranked WPI will meet in the NEWMAC semifinals on Friday evening in Worcester – the outcome could possibly end both teams’ chances of reaching the upcoming NCAA Tournament as an at-large bid.

Finally, St. Joseph (Conn.) moved-up two spots to the fifth position this week – they will be a team to watch (and follow) this week in the Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) – while ninth-ranked Brandeis University needs to beat New York University on Saturday, February 29th to have a chance to possibly secure an at-large bid to the postseason.


New England D-III Basketball Men’s Top 10 Week 13 Poll| Monday, Feb. 24th, 2020

1. Springfield College  22-3, 11-1 NEWMAC Last Week: No. 1
2. Colby College 23-2, 8-2 NESCAC Last Week: No. 2
3. Tufts University  19-6, 8-2 NESCAC Last Week: No. 6
4. Babson College 20-5, 10-4 NEWMAC Last Week: No. 4
5. St. Joseph (Conn.) 23-2, 11-0 GNAC Last Week: No. 7
6. Middlebury College 20-5, 6-4 NESCAC Last Week: No. 5
7. WPI  19-6, 10-3 NEWMAC Last Week: No. 3
8. Amherst College 18-7, 7-3 NESCAC Last Week: No. 9
9. Brandeis University  16-8, 8-5 UAA Last Week: No. 8
10. Trinity College 17-8, 6-4 NESCAC Last Week: No. 10

ON THE RISE: Albertus Magnus, Endicott College, New England College, Nichols College, and Western Connecticut 


Previous Polls: Preseason Poll |Week One| Week Two | Week ThreeWeek Four| Week Five |Week Six |Week Seven |Week Eight|Week Nine | Week Ten|Week 11|Week 12