The New York Knicks will be at home for their annual MLK Day matinee, but that won’t be the lone hoops action in New York City on this Monday, January 16.
Three NEC women’s basketball afternoon affairs will unfold within New York City’s five boroughs. The Keystone State will host another two match-ups with a sixth contest transpiring in Emmitsburg, MD, making for a full slate.
There will be contests on both sides of the Verrazano Bridge. LIU Brooklyn and St. Francis (NY) will welcome Fairleigh Dickinson and Monmouth, respectively, to BK. Then, in Staten Island, Wagner hosts Bryant on Grymes Hill. All three contests in NYC will tip off at 2:00 pm.
Out in western Pennsylvania, Saint Francis (PA) will host Sacred Heart, while Robert Morris entertains Quinnipiac. Both games tip off at 7:00 pm. In another primetime affair, Mount St. Mary’s hosts Central Connecticut.
Callan Taylor (20) had a memorable performance vs. Saint Francis (PA) as a freshman with 9 pts and 10 reb. in the 2009 NEC Championship Game. Now, a senior, Taylor leads the Pioneers up against the Red Flash in the Stokes Center Monday night.
Musings for Each of Monday’s Six WBB Games
– Can Sacred Heart complete the Keystone State sweep and maintain its perch alone atop the league standings as the only 6-0 NEC team? They’ll have to take down defending champion Saint Francis (PA) in order to do so. Although the injury-depleted Flash may be a bit down at the moment, they are certainly dangerous.
– The bout between LIU Brooklyn and Fairleigh Dickinson will feature two players who made the five-member Preseason All-NEC team – LIU senior forward Ashley Palmer (league-leading 19.8 ppg) & FDU senior guard Mariyah Laury (16.4 ppg).
– Bryant and Wagner will each take the court at the Spiro Center with two of the league’s fiercest post players. Bulldogs sophomore forward Naana Ankoma-Mensa (13.0 ppg, 9.9 rpg) is having a breakout season, while Wagner junior center Kelly Clark ranks amongst the top-10 league leaders in scoring (14.1 ppg) and rebounding (7.8 rpg) and is second in blocked shots (31).
– Both Central Connecticut and Mount St. Mary’s snapped losing streaks last time out. Now the two will meet head-to-head in Knott Arena .
– Monmouth seems to be settling in under first-year coach Jenny Palmateer, entering Monday’s matchup on a five-game win streak. While the Hawks look to extend their streak, St. Francis (NY) will be looking for its first league win following an 0-5 start.
– Quinnipiac and Robert Morris are two of the seven teams tied for second place in the NEC standings at 3-2. Although early in the season, this game could play a pivotal role in the seeding process once NEC Tournament time rolls around.
Here’s what RMU associate head coach Charlie Buscaglia had to say following Saturday’s setback to Sacred Heart…
NEC Basketball Buzz on Twitter…
@MUHawksWBB – Gammmmmmeeeeeee Daaaaaaaayyyyy! @MUHawks at @SFCTerriers at 2! #hawks
@LIUathletics – WBB: @LIUwbb set to host Fairleigh Dickinson in afternoon #NECwbb action today at 2.
@NECralph – Happy #MLK Day folks. Hope you enjoyed crazy #NFL wkend. full slate of #NECwbb gms today if you’re lookin for something 2 watch on day off.
@LouLoumj21 -Let’s go #BUWB get back to those winning ways.
@lyshwo1 – Happy MLK day ! Hopefully yall gettin some community service work in for me today since its #gameday…have a good one!
Current State of NEC Men’s Basketball? New York
Let’s Hear It for New York
We are now six games into the 18-game league schedule and there is already a buzz forming about the three New York City teams in the Conference, each off to their best NEC starts in quite some time. In fact, the three Big Apple teams have combined for a 16-2 league record thus far in 2011-12.
With a pair of home wins last week, defending NEC champion LIU Brooklyn stretched its win streak to seven and is the last remaining unbeaten in conference play with a 6-0 record. This marks the first 6-0 start for the Blackbirds in the 31-year history of the NEC. LIU’s neighborhood rival St. Francis (NY) has also made some waves with its 5-1 record to open league play. The surprising Terriers, who were picked 11th in the preseason coaches poll, have won four straight games and are now off to their best NEC start since going 12-1 to begin the 2000-01 conference season. Across the river, Wagner beat previously unbeaten Central Connecticut, 67-58, on Saturday to extend its win streak to seven games, the longest for the program since the 1979-80 season. The Seahawks are now tied with CCSU and St. Francis (NY) for second place with a 5-1 league record. The Green & White last jumped out to a 5-1 mark in 2007-08 when they won eight of their first nine league games. Overall, Wagner’s 14-3 start is its best since opening the 1955-56 season with a 20-2 record.
Click here for complete NEC MBB results and updated statistics.