Northeast No. 4 Skyhawks postseason journey continues at Southwest top seed
Twitty scored a team-high 19 points in last night's comeback win over Adelphi in the first round of the NE10 Tournament. (PHOTO BY Bob Blanchard)
SYRACUSE, N.Y. (February 24, 2018) – Northeast Division No. 4-seed Stonehill College, takes its postseason journey on the road as it travels to Southwest Division top-seed Le Moyne College, ranked No. 19 in the D2SIDA Top 25 Media poll and No. 22 in the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) Division II poll, for quarterfinal round action of the 2018 Northeast-10 Conference men's basketball tournament at Ted Grant Court on Sunday at 4 p.m.
Admission will be $8.00 for adults, $5.00 for children and senior citizens and $1.00 for students from participating institutions with a valid college ID. Chris Granozio and Don Familo will call the action for 'PhinsTV at lemoynedolphins.com, with links available to the webcast and live stats also available at stonehillskyhawks.com. Stonehill will host a live viewing at The Hill inside the Roche Dining Commons immediately following its women's NE10 quarterfinal against Adelphi University.
Stonehill (17-11, 12-9 NE10), making its 31st appearance in the NE10 Tournament, advanced to the quarterfinals with an 85-74 comeback win over Southwest No. 5 Adelphi University in last night's first round inside Merkert Gymnasium. Sophomores Brandon Twitty (Randolph, Massachusetts/Catholic Memorial) and Will Moreton (Minneapolis, Minnesota/Edina) paced the Skyhawks who erased a 19-point first half deficit to record the win. Twitty finished with a team-high 19 points on 7-of-11 shooting from the floor, including 3-for-4 from three-point range, with a career-high matching four assists and two steals, while Moreton posted his sixth double-double of the season with 17 points, including 15 in the second half, and ten rebounds. Le Moyne (21-6, 18-2 NE10), ranked No. 1 in the NCAA Division II East Regional rankings, earned a first round bye as the top seed from the Southwest Division.
Stonehill, tied with American International College for the third-most NE10 Tournament appearances in Conference history, behind only Saint Anselm College (35) and Bentley University (36), seeks its fifth NE10 title in program history. Le Moyne makes its 19th NE10 Tournament appearance, aiming for its second championship, having won its lone title in its first year in the Conference back in 1997 – its first of two Championship game appearances.
The winner of tomorrow's game advances to Wednesday's NE10 Semifinal round to face the winner of tomorrow's quarterfinal between Southwest No. 3 University of New Haven (17-9, 13-7 NE10) and Northeast No. 2 Merrimack College (18-10, 14-7 NE10) at the site of the higher seed at 7 p.m. The NE10 Championship game is Saturday, March 3, at 1 p.m.
Moreton posted his sixth career double-double last night and leads the Skyhawks in scoring and rebounding in his sophomore season. (PHOTO BY Bob Blanchard)
Tomorrow marks the 38th meeting all-time between these two programs, the second in postseason play. Le Moyne holds a 22-15 advantage in the all-time series, which dates back to 1962, posting a 61-54 victory over Stonehill in the first round of the 2007 NE10 Tournament. The Dolphins have won three-straight in the series, and seven of the last ten, after a 71-52 victory in the only regular season matchup in Easton back on January 17. Senior Isaiah Eisendorf (Silver Spring, Maryland/Springbrook) paced a Le Moyne offense which shot 63.4-percent from the field (26-for-41), including a blistering 14-for-17 (82.4%) in the first half alone, with a game-high 20 points on 8-of-11 shooting from the floor, to go with three rebounds and two assists. Moreton and Twitty paced Stonehill with 12 and 11 points, respectively.
Stonehill has won six of its last eight after Friday night's first round win, and is 8-5 on the road this season. The Skyhawks are the top three-point shooting team in the NE10, ranking sixth nationally in Division II overall, at 42-percent from beyond the arc, with seven players shooting 42-percent from three-point range or better. Stonehill ranks fourth among NE10 scoring leaders with 78.8 points per game and free-throw percentage (.757), ranking seventh in field goal percentage offense (.466) and averaging 15.2 assists per game (5th NE10). The Skyhawks also commit the fourth-fewest turnovers per game (12.0) and rank third in the NE10 with 6.8 steals per game.
Stonehill is led by the sophomore trio of Moreton, Twitty and Dan Largey (Oceanport, New Jersey/Peddie School). Moreton fills the stat sheet with 18.2 points (8th NE10), 7.6 rebounds (5th), 2.8 assists (19th) and 1.3 steals (12th) in 32.9 minutes per game for the Skyhawks, shooting 46.2-percent from the floor, including 42.6% (81-for-190) from three-point distance (14th), while converting 78.2% (68-87) of his free-throws (13th). Twitty contributes 14.6 points on 45.7% shooting, including 42.6% (63-148) from deep, with 2.3 rebounds and 1.8 steals per game, while Largey is adding 11.6 points on 43.8% shooting, including 43.3% (58-134) from deep (12th), converting an NE10-best 91.5% (54-59) of his free-throws, with 4.4 rebounds per outing.
Lee leads the Skyhawks with 4.8 assists per game, totaling 124 for the season, compared to 53 turnovers. (PHOTO BY Bob Blanchard)
Seniors KJ Lee (Huntington Station, New York/Long Island Lutheran), Joel Berroa (Lawrence, Massachusetts/Bridgton Academy) and Ryan Roach (Weymouth, Massachusetts/Cardinal Spellman) provide the experience for Stonehill's otherwise young squad. Lee is averaging 10.4 points on 49.1% shooting, 5.6 rebounds and 4.8 assists (6th), while Berroa chips in 6.7 points and 4.0 rebounds. Freshman Owen Chose (Eden Prairie, Minnesota/Eden Prairie) adds a spark off the bench with 8.9 points on 44.4% shooting (48-for-108) from three (4th) in 18.7 minutes per game.
Le Moyne enters the postseason after seeing a 12-game winning streak halted by New Haven in overtime in its regular season finale on Grant Court Tuesday night. The Dolphins boast a balanced offensive effort with no players scoring more than 12 points per game, in support the top defense in the NE10 by a margin of over five points per game. Yielding a league-low 63 points per game, the Dolphins also lead the Conference in field goal percentage defense (.418), while ranking second for three-point percentage defense (.337). The Dolphins are 12th in the NE10 with 71.7 points per game, but are second in field goal percentage offense (.483) and free-throw percentage (.767).
Senior Tyquan Rolon (Syracuse, New York/Nottingham) leads three Le Moyne players averaging in double-figures in scoring with 11.9 points, 4.3 rebounds, 3.2 assists and a steal per game, shooting 45.6-percent from the field and 75% (36-48) from the free-throw line. Senior Russell Sangster (Rockville, Maryland/Bullis School) adds 11 points on 46.9% shooting, with 4.4 rebounds and 2.3 assists in a team-high 30-minutes per game, while Eisendorf contributes 10.6 points on 55.2% shooting, with 5.4 rebounds per game.
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2018 Northeast-10 Conference
Men's Basketball Championships
Friday, February 23
Game 1: #4NE Stonehill 85, #5 SW Adelphi 74
Game 2: #4SW Southern Conn. State 76, #5NE Southern New Hampshire 74
Sunday, February 25
Game 3: #4NE Stonehill (17-11, 12-9 NE10) at #1SW Le Moyne (21-6, 18-2 NE10), 4 p.m.
Game 4: #4SW Southern Conn. State (16-11, 11-9 NE10) at #1NE Saint Anselm (20-7, 15-6 NE10), 3 p.m.
Game 5: #3NE Bentley (15-11, 12-9 NE10) at #2SW Saint Rose (20-8, 15-5 NE10), 3 p.m.
Game 6: #3SW New Haven (17-9, 13-7 NE10) at #2NE Merrimack (18-10, 14-7 NE10), 3 p.m.
Wednesday, February 28
Semifinals (at higher seeds)
Game 7: Game 3 winner vs. Game 6 winner, 7 p.m.
Game 8: Game 4 winner vs. Game 5 winner, 7 p.m.
Saturday, March 5
Championship (at highest remaining seed)
Game 9: Game 7 winner vs. Game 8 winner*, 1 p.m.
* - if same seed, site determined by winner of regular-season matchup