D3 Basketball: Brandeis will attempt to win its second-straight New England Big 4 Challenge this weekend

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Brandeis University will attempt to capture its second-straight New England Big 4 Challenge championship this weekend. (PHOTO COURTESY: Babson College Athletics)

By Matt Noonan 

Brandeis University captured the 2018 New England Big 4 Challenge last season with a commanding 74-49 win over Babson College and will attempt to win the title again this weekend when they compete in the two-day, four-team tournament at Salem State University.

The Judges will begin their title defense against Tufts University on Saturday, December 7th at 12 p.m. Babson and Salem State will square-off afterward at 2 p.m. The winner of both contests will advance to Sunday’s championship game at 2 p.m. which will follow the consolation game at 12 p.m.

Brandeis will certainly be a team to watch this weekend after beginning their current campaign with a 5-2 mark, but the same could be said for the Beavers of Babson, which enter the weekend tournament with an impressive 7-0 record. The Green and White’s seventh win – an 87-82 victory over Amherst College earlier this week – was highlighted by Frank Oftring, who netted a career-high 30 points to go along with 10 rebounds. 

Tufts saw its five-game winning streak to start its 2019-20 campaign snapped earlier this week against WPI. The Jumbos scored some impressive non-conference wins prior to their initial setback last month against MIT and UMass Dartmouth.

Salem State will attempt to snap its current five-game losing streak this weekend when they face Babson in the opening round. The Vikings have not appeared in the win column since last month when they defeated Anna Maria College, 89-76.

The winner of the tournament will receive the Crotty Cup, which is named after Michael Crotty Sr., who was the Founder and Director of the Middlesex Magic.

“The tournament features four very good teams from four different leagues, to celebrate the game of basketball and a dear friend to each of us in Michael Crotty Sr., Founder, and Director of the Middlesex Magic AAU Club, who left us far too soon,” said Salem State coach Chris Harvey, via the tournament preview.

While Brandeis has won four New England Big 4 Challenges, Babson has won three – their last came during the 2016-17 season when they captured the program’s first-ever NCAA championship. Tufts has won two titles, while Salem State captured its first-ever tournament crown two years ago.

Brandeis Tops Babson In Big 4 Challenge Championship,74-49

I4CwSboa_400x400By Matt Noonan | @MattNoonan11

Make it four-straight early season wins for the Brandeis University men’s basketball team, which defeated Babson College, 74-49, in the 2018 Big 4 Challenge Championship earlier this evening.

The championship win was the Judges’ first since beating Salem State in 2012.

Corey Sherman paced the Blue and White with 25 points, including six freebies and three trifectas, while adding six rebounds, three assists, three steals and one block.

Chandler Jones chipped-in 18 points, six rebounds, one assist and one swipe, while Eric D’Aguanno netted 12 points off the bench.

Sherman was selected as the tournament’s most valuable player, while earning a spot on the all-tournament team, as well. Joining Sherman on the five player team was Jones, along with Babson’s Frank OftringSean Bryan (Salem State) and Brennan Morris (Tufts University).

Brandeis secured a 34-19 lead at the break before tallying 40 points in the final session. Babson, which netted just 30 points in the final 20 minutes, which was held to a season-low 49 points. Oftring paced the Beavers with 16 points on 6 of 12 shooting.

Prior to Babson-Brandeis, Salem State defeated Tufts, 90-84, to secure a third place finish. Last season, the Vikings defeated the Jumbos and Beavers to claim their first-ever Big 4 Challenge trophy.

The Judges will attempt to continue their early season momentum on Thursday, December 6th when they visit Becker College at 7 p.m.


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

Babson, Brandeis Advance to Big 4 Challenge Championship

NS BASKETBALLBy Matt Noonan | @MattNoonan11 

For the first time since 2012, the Brandeis University men’s basketball team will have a chance to win a Big 4 Challenge, thanks to a late afternoon win over Salem State.

The Judges, who defeated the Vikings by a score of 77-69, will face host Babson College, which defeated Tufts University, 94-73.

Babson competed in the Big 4 Championship last season – the game was held at Tufts – but fell to Salem State, which captured the four-team, two-day tournament crown for the first time in program history.

The Beavers captured the 2016 tournament with back-to-back wins over Tufts and Salem State.

Babson and Brandeis will meet tomorrow afternoon at 4 p.m. – the game will be held in Babson Park – while Salem State and Tufts will square-off at 2 p.m.

Brandeis 77, Salem State 69: Corey Sherman scored a team-high 24 points, while Colin Sawyer added 18 points to lift the Judges to their third-straight win. Salem State led Brandeis, 32-29, at the break, while the Judges outscored the Vikings, 48-37, in the second stanza to secure their fourth win of the season. Salem State’s Sean Bryan led all scorers with 27 points on 7 of 21 shooting, including 5 of 11 from beyond the arc and 8 of 10 at the free-throw line.

Babson 94, Tufts 73: Three Babson starters netted double-figures, including Brandon Johnson to send the host Beavers past Tufts for the Green and White’s third-straight win. Johnson led the Beavers with 21 points, while also adding five rebounds, two assists and one steal. James Welch netted 14 points off the bench on 5 of 10 shooting, including 4 of 6 from downtown. Tyler Aronson paced the Jumbos with 17 points, while Eric Savage added 13 points off the bench. Babson led 50-29 at the break, while both teams netted 44 points, respectively, during the final 20 minutes.


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

D3 Hoops: Noontime Sports Men’s Basketball Final Top 10 (March 20th, 2018)

NSBasketballTop10NEW

By NoontimeSports.com (@NoontimeSports) 

The 2017-18 New England D3 Basketball season concluded last weekend with Springfield College competing in the semifinals – a.k.a. the “Final Four.”

The Pride enjoyed an exciting run to Salem, Virginia, scoring a quartet of wins, including a third-round victory over Hamilton College, which earned the third position in our final poll.

MIT checked-in second overall – the Engineers also enjoyed an exciting postseason run as well, but saw their bid for a spot in the semifinals come-up short against Ramapo College in the Sectional Finals.

Middlebury College and Williams College rounded out the top five spots, checking-in fourth and fifth, respectively.

As always, stay connected with Noontime Sports on Facebook and Twitter, and make sure to toss our new basketball Twitter handle (@Noontime_Hoops) a follow, too!


Men’s Basketball Top 10 – Final 2017-18 Poll 

1. Springfield College

22-9, 12-2 NEWMAC

2. MIT

25-6, 10-4 NEWMAC

3. Hamilton College

24-5, 7-3 NESCAC

4. Middlebury College

21-7, 7-3 NESCAC

5. Williams College

23-6, 7-3 NESCAC

6. Eastern Connecticut St. 

26-4, 13-1 LEC

7. Wesleyan University

22-7, 7-3 NESCAC

8. Nichols College

25-4, 16-2 CCC

9. Salem State 

22-4, 12-0 MASCAC

10. Amherst College

17-9, 7-3 NESCAC

ON THE RISE: Johnson & Wales (19-10, 13-3 GNAC) and Southern Vermont (22-6, 12-2 NECC)

D3 Hoops: Noontime Sports Men’s Basketball Top 10 (Monday, Feb. 26th)

NSBasketballTop10NEW

By NoontimeSports.com (@NoontimeSports)

With another week of New England Division III men’s basketball in the books, it is time to unveil this week’s Noontime Sports Top 10 Poll for Monday, February 26th, 2018!

This week’s poll – similar to the past 11 polls this season – is produced by the Noontime Sports College Basketball committee, which is made-up of athletic communication directors, coaches and media members here in New England.

Men’s Basketball Top 10 | Monday, February 26th, 2018

1. Williams College 

22-5 | NESCAC

Last Week: No. 2

2. Eastern Conn. St.

25-3 | LEC

Last Week: No. 1

3. Wesleyan University

21-6 | NESCAC

Last Week: No. 3

4. Hamilton College

22-4 | NESCAC

Last Week: No. 4

5. MIT

22-5 | NEWMAC

Last Week: No. 10

6. Nichols College

25-3 | CCC

Last Week: 8

7. Middlebury College 

19-6 | NESCAC

Last Week: No. 9

8. Amherst College

17-9 | NESCAC

Last Week: No. 6

9. Springfield College

18-8 | NEWMAC

Last Week: No. 7

10. Salem State 

22-4 | MASCAC

Last Week: No. 5 

On The Rise: Albertus Magnus (21-6|GNAC), Johnson & Wales (19-9 |GNAC), Keene State (19-9|LEC), New England College (NAC) and Tufts University (17-8|NESCAC)