By NoontimeSports.com | @NoontimeSports & @Noontime_Hoops
A brand new season of New England D3 hoops is set to tip-off next week, which means its time to unveil our first Noontime Sports New England D3 Women’s Basketball Top 10 poll of the season.
Similar to last year, our poll will be produced every Monday throughout the season with the help of our Noontime Basketball committee, which is made-up of coaches, athletic communication offices and media members in the six New England states.
So, without further ado, here is our first poll of the 2018-19 season – welcome back, basketball!
Noontime Sports D3 New England Women’s Basketball Poll | Nov. 6th, 2018
1. Amherst College
2. Bowdoin College
3. Tufts University
4. St. Joseph’s Maine
6. UMass Dartmouth
7. Smith College
8. Middlebury College
9. UMass Boston
10. Brandeis University
On The Rise: Babson College, Framingham State, Roger Williams, Springfield College, Wesleyan University, Westfield State, WPI and University of New England
Stay connected with our New England basketball coverage by following @Noontime_Hoops on Twitter Today!
Jim Calhoun will be spotted on the hardwood this winter as the initial head coach of the University of St. Joseph’s (Conn.) men’s basketball program, which will play its first-ever NCAA Division III contest on Friday, November 9th against William Paterson University.
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 Knicks, New 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!
“This basketball program has a winning tradition and great support from the campus and local community. I look forward to working with the talented group of student-athletes in our pursuit to hang the next banner in The Murray Center.”
Glynn takes over for coach MichaelByrnes, who guided the Anchormen to an 8-18 overall record, including a 5-9 mark in the Little East Conference (LEC).
Also being named a new head coach last Wednesday was former Middlebury College assistant Jessica Turner, who takes over a talented Skidmore College women’s basketball team.
Turner, who played basketball at Castleton University, spent five seasons with the Panthers, assisting them to a 17-8 ledger this past winter, along with an appearance in the New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) Tournament. She was instrumental in helping Catherine Harrison earn the conference’s Rookie of the Year honor at the conclusion of the 2016 season.
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!
Women’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.
Women’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.
Women’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.