There’s been no snow yet, but there has been a final flurry of games before Christmas.
In fact, it has yet to subside.
Robert Morris and Long Island, who faced each other in the 2011 NEC Men’s Basketball Championship Game, picked up pre-Christmas wins for the NEC in non-conference play on Tuesday night (Dec. 20).
The Colonials moved to 9-3 overall, the best mark amongst all NEC teams, by topping Hampton (MEAC) at home, 64-54.
“I thought that was a very good win for us. Hampton’s a talented team and can do things that can cause us a lot of issues,” surmised RMU’s second-year head coach following the win over the MEAC member.
The win did not come without a cost as Colonials’ swingman Russell Johnson played only 11 minutes before going down with an injury. Toole later said it was diagnosed as a broken nose, and hopes to have him back soon.
“There were a number of reasons tonight we could have said ‘Hey, it’s not our night. Russell went down. They’re guys are big, etc.’ but our guys continued to work and continued to battle,” said Toole of Robert Morris’ resiliency.
Watch Toole’s post-game presser…
Meanwhile, the Blackbirds took center stage in Downtown Brooklyn, hanging 100 on Southland Conference member Texas State in a 100-84 triumph.
Highlight’s from LIU’s 100-84 win…
LIU (7-6) is done until Dec. 30 when NJIT crosses the Hudson River to face Jim Ferry’s Blackbirds. Andy Toole’s Colonials will squeeze in one more contest at Youngstown State on Dec. 22 before taking a short holiday break that ends with a Dec. 29 date in Memphis.
Fairleigh Dickinson will host Vermont and Sacred Heart will visit Boston College in the two men’s games on the Dec. 21 docket. Both contests begin at 7:00 pm EST.
Robert Morris’ bout at Youngstown is one of six scheduled men’s games on Dec. 22. Monmouth will host I-195 rival Rider at the Jersey Shore. Bryant battles a Pac-12 member in its trip to Arizona. Central Connecticut looks to defeat A-10 member LaSalle, a team that RMU beat earlier in the season.
There are three games, one being between Dan Hurley’s Wagner Seahawks and Jamie Dixon’s Pitt Panthers, on Christmas Eve Eve aka Dec. 23 before a four-day break in the NEC hoops schedule, which resumes after Christmas on Dec. 28.
The women have also been/will be active on the hardwood in the few days left before Christmas.
Quinnipiac won a non-conference game for the sixth time in a row as Felicia Barron treated Yale like a Christmas Tree, lighting up the Bulldogs for 24 points in a 68-63 win. Barron made five steals, seeing her NCAA-leading steals per game average drop a fraction (6.1).
WTNH recaps Quinnipiac’s clash with Yale…
There are five women’s games on Dec. 21 with two of them tipping off prior to noon. Robert Morris hosted Elementary School Day at “The Chuck” and Artemis Spanou gave the children a reason to get rowdy during the game that started at 10:00 am. Spanou poured in 24 points as the Colonials topped Akron, 85-78, to run the NEC’s record at MAC members to 5-0 this season. Bryant battled Holy Cross in an 11:45 am start. Wagner and New Hampshire will close out the day’s slate with a 7:00 pm tip-off from the Spiro Sports Center on Staten Island.
Central Connecticut, which opens play in the Hofstra Holiday Classic against the host Pride on Wednesday, will play one of two games on Dec. 22 docket. The Blue Devils’ Thursday opponent is TBD, while Fairleigh Dickinson will host MAAC member Rider in a battle for Garden State bragging rights.
After the two tilts on Dec. 22, NEC women’s hoops goes into hibernation until Dec. 28.
Overtime! Tweet of the Day
@Meaghanmccarthy – This new year let’s all vow to be better people. Better sisters/brothers, better sons/daughters, better friends, better fans, better SELF
Other Top-rated Tweets
@eamonnbrennan – @MattNorlander Thanks man. Agreed — we’re lucky lads to be able call this “work.”
@TheRock – Always be the lead dog. If you’re not – the view is always the same. #LeadDogView
Articles of Interest
Short-handed Robert Morris beats Hampton – Pittsburgh Tribune-Review (Paul Schofield)
Pitt manhandles St. Francis (Pa.) in victory – Pittsburgh Tribune-Review (Jerry DiPaola)
MU men’s hoops vs. Rider Game Day and POLL – Asbury Park Press (Hawks Nest)
Will Power: It Helps Robert Morris Succeed – Meyer On Morris
More reaction from RMU’s MBB win over Hampton…
FDU Throwers hit the weight room…
– Dec. 21, 2011 –