Thursday, February 28, 2013
VIDEO: O.D. Anosike talks about Senior Night
If you watch until the end, Anosike is asked about the anonymous Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference coach that said he doesn't play any defense.
UAlbany 56, New Hampshire 49
The Great Danes (9-6, 21-9) shook off a bad first half to pull away after intermission.
The Wildcats (4-11, 8-19) were led by Patrick Konan, who scored a game-high 24 points, while shooting 9-10 from the floor, including 6-6 from beyond the arc.
UAlbany ends the season on Sunday at Stony Brook, which clinched the regular season title with a victory over Boston University on Thursday.
One MAAC coach not a fan of O.D. Anosike
Today, the guys posted a blog handicapping the some of the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference individual award races.
In the post, one MAAC coach takes a dig at Siena senior O.D. Anosike, saying “He doesn’t play defense because he doesn’t want to foul…He just wants to get his rebounds.”
The coach isn't listed, as the entire blog asked coaches from around the league for answers on the condition of anonymity.
I'm sure Anosike, who is second in the country in rebounding (11.6 rpg), would say his senior season hasn't lived up to expectations, as his team is 7-21.
As the Siena Athletic Department points out, however, Anosike is just one of seven active plays in Division I with 1,000 career points and 1,000 career rebounds. The other six are not in the MAAC. They also point out that only nine MAAC players have ever done that, including Anosike's teammate Ryan Rossiter, who was named MAAC Player of the Year during his season season (2010-11).
This blog entry from Big Apple Buckets is asking about things like player of the year, rookie of the year and coach of the year, so it's a little surprising that a coach would offer up such a negative feeling about one of the more accomplished players in the league.
It's also worth noting that Anosike, who was a preseason all-conference selection didn't receive any support from the 15 coaches/administrators polled by Big Apple Buckets. None listed him as 1st, 2nd or 3rd for MAAC Player of the Year.
This is something that I would think would motivate Anosike, who could have as few as three games remaining in his college career.
Anosike will be honored Friday evening, on Senior Night, when the Saints host Marist in downtown Albany .
Tuesday, February 26, 2013
UAlbany has taken long road to success
|J.S. Carras - The Record|
The University at Albany had just won its 20th game, becoming just the third team in the program's Division I history to do so.
Black and Metcalf can remember when they lost 20 games -- 25 to be exact, during their freshmen season (2009-10).
“It means a lot," said Black, a senior guard. It’s a good feeling to be one of the best teams in Albany history.”
The team also knows that the previous two teams to win 20 games, went on to play in the NCAA tournament.
“We hope we can continue the path," said Black.
During that freshman season, coach Will Brown decided to go with some of the young guys, including Black and Metcalf to try
“I think we struggled mightily that year," Brown said. "But I think it helped those guys develop, it helped them get better and they went from the poor season they had as freshmen to winning 16, 19 and then 20+. They’ve made great strides and they’ve developed and they helped this team and our program get back to where we want to get back to, which is winning 20+ games. I think Mike and Blake deserve a lot of credit for what they’ve endured and how hard they’ve worked.”
The team's win total has increased the past four seasons, doing so again this season after losing its top two scorers, Gerardo Suero and Logan Aronhalt, from last year.
“We’ve kept getting better," Black said. "We’ve kept putting work in and it’s good to see that all the hard work pay off.”
As their collegiate careers wind down, Black and Metcalf hope they can achieve one goal that has eluded them -- win an America East tournament title. To this point they've been a part of 62 victories and they hope a few more are on the horizon.
“It’s been four great years," said Metcalf.
Maine women's team involved in bus crash
An America East spokesperson said that the Maine AD has relayed that all the players and coaches have only suffered "minor injuries." Reportedly, however, the bus driver was injured though.
The Black Bears are scheduled to play against the Terriers of Boston University on Wednesday evening.
Here in a preliminary report from the Bangor Daily News.
VIDEO: UAlbany's Blake Metcalf
Sunday, February 24, 2013
VIDEO: Coach B talks about Radford win
Saturday, February 23, 2013
UAlbany tops Fairfield 58-50
The Great Danes picked up their 20th win of the season, besting Fairfield 58-50, in a BracketBusters game at Webster Bank Arena.
UAlbany (20-9) eclipsed its win total of last season, while also cracking the 20-win mark for the first time since the 2006-07 season. It’s only the third time the Great Danes have won 20 or more games at the Division I level, the previous two came in NCAA tournament seasons.
“This group deserves a lot of credit,” said UAlbany coach Will Brown.
The Great Danes got great play from junior John Puk and sophomore Sam Rowley, who combined for 26 points and 11 rebounds.
Puk was especially effective, as he scored five of the first seven points of the second half, as UAlbany extended its lead to double-digits.
“This is probably his best game since (the season-opener against) Duquesne,” Brown said. “He was so active. When he’s active, he’s a different player.”
The Great Danes played their second straight game without redshirt freshman Peter Hooley (concussion), but Gary Johnson played well in his second consecutive start.
The Stags (17-12) played without two starters, freshman Amadou Sidibe and senior Desmond Wade. Derek Needham scored 15 points to lead Fairfield, while Keith Matthews chipped in 11.
UAlbany got just five points from senior guard Mike Black, who also finished with six turnovers. Still, they were able to post a very solid win, one of their best of the year.
“I’m proud of my guys,” Brown said. “I thought we played with great toughness.”
The Great Danes finish with a home game against New Hampshire (Feb. 28) and a road game at Stony Brook (March 3), before they host the conference tournament.
“We want to be feeling good about ourselves when the conference tournament rolls around,” Brown said. “This was a good win for us.”
Tuesday, February 19, 2013
VIDEO: Javion Ogunyemi talks Troy win
Sunday, February 17, 2013
VIDEO: Coach B following Loyola loss
Saturday, February 16, 2013
Rob Poole struggling for Siena
|J.S. Carras/The Record|
The sophomore guard, who seemed to be a rising star in the league, has now scored three points total in the past two games.
“I think in the second half of the conference (schedule), they have him pretty well scouted now," said Siena coach Mitch Buonaguro.
The Saints did try to run some things for Poole, but it didn't work as he finished 0-2 from the floor and sat out for nearly the game's final 14 minutes, along with senior O.D. Anosike.
“I just have to be more aggressive I think," he said, following the 80-57 loss to Loyola (Md.), in the locker room.
Poole noticed that teams were guarding him differently when the Saints made the Buffalo trip, back in mid-January.
VIDEO: UAlbany following Hartford win
Loyola 80, Siena 57
The Saints saw their senior star argue with the coach and lost to a Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference by largest margin since 1994.
O.D. Anosike and coach Mitch Buonaguro got into it in the second half and it resulted in Anosike sitting for nearly the final 14 minutes. Trenity Burdine scored a team-high points for Siena (4-12, 6-21).
Dylon Cormier led all scorers with 24 points for Loyola (11-5, 19-9).
Loyola (Md.) 37, Siena 29 (half)
The Saints had 10 turnovers before 10 minutes had elapsed, but a little run at the end of the half as them within eight, 37-29, at intermission.
Loyola (Md.) started shooting great from long distance and is being led by guard Dylon Cormier, who has 10 points.
O.D. Ansoike had eight points and four rebounds and Davis Martens has provided a spark off the bench with two big dunks.
Siena is shooting 50 percent (9-18) from the field, so if that continues, it should be a good second half.
Friday, February 15, 2013
VIDEO: Mike Black before Hartford game
UAlbany's Will Brown likes Lowell addition
On Friday, University at Albany coach Will Brown was asked his thoughts of a new program joining the league.
“I think our commissioner (Amy Huchthausen) did a tremendous job of adding UMass Lowell to the league," Brown said. "With all the realignment going on, you don’t want to be left behind. We had nine teams, we lost one to get down to eight and less than a year later, we’re back at nine."
Brown is referring to Boston University, which is in the midst of its final year in the America East before heading to the Patriot League.
"I think we’re trying operate from a power of strength, trying to add and not just be one of those leagues that fall aparat or falls behind."
Lowell is the first addition to the league since 2003-04, when UMBC joined and they are elevating their athletic programs (except hockey, which already is Division I) from the Division II level. They had been competing in the Northeast-10 Conference, which is the league that The College of Saint Rose competes in.
"Obviously, Lowell’s made the commitment to the America East and the Division I level," Brown said. "So I’m sure they’re going to have the resources and the facilities to be successful.”
Brown said that from talking to other coaches, the fact that the league is adding teams is, in his mind, a positive.
"Its nice that we’re going in the right direction with it,” he said.
Thursday, February 14, 2013
Fairfield crushes Siena 74-52
The Saints fell behind early and never could recover, as Fairfield thoroughly outplayed them to a tune of 74-50 decision at the Webster Bank Arena.
Siena (4-11, 6-20) has now lost 20 games for only the third time in program history and has locked up a spot in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference first round.
The Saints will play in a play-in game on Friday, March 8, at the MassMutual Center in Springfield, Mass.
Derek Needham did it all for the Stags scoring a game-high 31 points and knocking down a career-high eight 3-pointers. Fairfield (8-7, 16-11) also got 10 point from senior Colin Nickerson.
Siena trailed by as many as 19 points in the first half, 34-15. The Saints finished the half on a run and scored the second half’s first basket to cut deficit to 11, 36-25.
From there, it was all Stags with Needham making shot after shot. The senior finished 11-17 from the floor, but 8-11 from beyond the arc.
Siena played without sophomore Rakeem Brookins, who sat out after reaggravating a back injury during the team’s shootaround prior to the game.
Fairfield played without one of its guards, senior Desmond Wade, who missed his second straight game.
It didn’t affect the Stags who jumped out to a 22-10 lead, as Needham hit four three’s in the first seven minutes.
The Saints struggled offensively all night. Their top two scorers, O.D. Anosike and Rob Poole, were held without a field goal until less than five minutes remained. Anosike, who led the country in rebounding coming in, finished with just five points and six rebounds, while Poole had just three points.
The only other seasons where Siena lost 20 or more games came in 1996-95 (22) and 2004-05 (24).
The Saints host Loyola (Md.) on Saturday in downtown Albany.
Siena hosting 13th Pink Zone game Friday
|J.S. Carras/The Record|
Jaques, whose father, Steve, has battled cancer, knew it was something that she cared passionately about as well.
“Everybody’s been touched by cancer at some point in their life, whether it’s a loved one or a friend,” she said. “Anything we can do to promote research and promote raising money is really important.”
Siena and Capital Region Action Against Breast Cancer (CRAAB!) have been partnering for 13 years, bringing awareness and raising money to fight cancer. Last year, the Saints raised $25,853 in there game and tonight, when they take on Rider, at 7 p.m., they are shooting to raise $30,000.
“Our players love this game,” Jaques said. “It’s become a fantastic tradition on the campus and in this community and I’m just lucky to be a part of it.”
Jaques also had the chance to coach against the late Kay Yow, who coached N.C. State to more than 700 victories and passed away from cancer in 2009.
“It’s special,” Jaques said. “It’s like Coach (Jim) Valvano is for the men and Coaches vs. Cancer.”
The game is also important, as the Saints (5-7, 9-14) and Broncs (6-6, 11-12) are both right in a logjam in the middle of the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference standings. Jaques, a native of Rosemont, N.J., got her coaching start, at Rider as an assistant (1998-99).
Like in past years, the Saints will wear pink jerseys and encourage fans to wear pink to the game. Siena will hold a special survivors recognition honoring local breast cancer survivors on the court, recognizing their courageous battles against the disease. CRAAB! will also have tables and displays set up with vital information on the fight against breast cancer.
“In our community, it’s extremely well supported and I think that’s a great indication of the community of Albany and Siena itself and how this community can rally and care about something more than just a basketball game,” she said.
For more information, visit SienaSaints.com/PinkZone.
UMass Lowell officialy joins America East
The University of Massachusetts Lowell will elevate all of its athletic programs to the Division I level and join the conference, which is the league that the University at Albany belongs to for all sports except football.
The America East Board of Presidents unanimously approved UMass-Lowell as a member of the conference effective July 1, 2013. The move also received the unanimous support of UMass Lowell’s Faculty Senate Executive Committee and Student Government Association.
The River Hawks will fill the void left by Boston University, which is leaving for the Patriot League. UMass Lowell will not be eligible for postseason play until four-year reclassification period is over, just before the 2017-18 season.
“I am thrilled to welcome UMass Lowell as the newest member of America East,” said league commissioner Amy Huchthausen. “All throughout the membership evaluation process, our conference’s leadership has stressed the importance of finding peer institutions with similar profiles and infrastructure of strong academics, competitive athletics programs and outstanding facilities. UMass Lowell has those assets and will strengthen America East in all facets.”
With the exception of its Division I men’s ice hockey team, UMass Lowell has been a member of NCAA Division II since 1975 and a member of the Northeast-10 Conference since 2000.
“UMass Lowell is proud to have been chosen to join the America East Conference, not just on the basis of the strengths of our outstanding athletics programs and facilities, but also because of the university’s excellence in academics, researchs and vibrant campus life,” said UMass Lowell Chancellor Marty Meehan.
The addition of UMass Lowell is the first expansion since 2002, when UMBC was elected to membership effective for the 2003-04 academic year.
Tuesday, February 12, 2013
VIDEO: Ryan Rossiter drops by Siena
Monday, February 11, 2013
Weekend Recap for UAlbany, Siena
It looks like the Saints will be in the play-in round for the second time in three years, when the MAAC tournament takes place in March.
Here is a link to Friday's game story from stringer Harvey Valentine and a writeup from Sunday's game.
Sunday's game was a milestone day for senior O.D. Anosike, as he became just the third player to join the program's 1,000-point/1,000-rebound club, joining former teammate Ryan Rossiter and Lee Matthews.
Also, I had a chance to write a story on UAlbany women's senior Ebone Henry, who became the program's all-time leading scorer a few weeks back. Here is a link.
The UAlbany men's team lost on Saturday at Maine, dropping to 7-5 in America East play.
One last thing. For UAlbany fans, I did an interview with the Colonial Athletic Association, the football team's new league last week and it's posted here.
Saturday, February 9, 2013
UAlbany falls up at Maine
The Great Danes haven’t slept in their own beds for the past four night, but they won’t get a good night’s sleep even when they get back to the Capital District. Maine played one of its best games of the season, leading for nearly the entire game, in a 64-52 victory over UAlbany at Alfond Sports Arena.
Due to the winter storm, the Great Danes hadn’t spent a night at home since Monday. The left for Baltimore, Md., on Tuesday, played UMBC on Wednesday, returned to Albany Thursday morning and then departing right away for Maine.
UAlbany (7-5, 18-8) had won four straight games in this series and the Black Bears (4-8, 9-15) had lost four straight games heading in.
The Great Danes led only once, despite getting a huge game from Sam Rowley. The sophomore from Australia filled the stat sheet, scoring 19 points, grabbing a career-high 15 rebounds, making five steals and dishing out four assists.
UAlbany went in front, 5-4, following a 3-pointer from senior Mike Black, which gave him 1,400 points for his career, just the 12th player in program history to reach that feat.
Maine then went on a 22-6 run, hitting five of their first six 3-pointers to grab a big lead.
Justin Edwards led the way for the Black Bears, scoring 16 points as four Maine players were in double figures, and nearly a fifth, as Mike Allison finished with nine points.
Down 13 at halftime, the Great Danes cut the deficit to six, 40-34, with 11:57 remaining, but couldn’t get any closer. The Black Bears responded with a 10-4 run to bring the lead back to double-digits.
Black’s status was uncertain after he sprained his ankle in Wednesday’s win over the Retrievers. He finished with 16 points in 35 minutes and now sits ninth all-time on the program’s scoring list, with 1,413 career points.
UAlbany struggled from the field, shooting just 36 percent (20-56) from the floor and 29 percent (4-14) from beyond the arc.
Jacob Iati, who struggled with just five points on 2-13 shooting, did knock down his 73rd 3-pointer of the season, which ties him with former teammate Logan Aronhalt, for the fourth most in a single-season in program history.
The Great Danes host Hartford next Saturday at SEFCU Arena.
Thursday, February 7, 2013
UAlbany's Mike Black (and blue)
Iati drove Black to the SEFCU Arena on Thursday -- the University at Albany guards didn't discuss Black's recently rolled ankle or Iati's arthritic Achilles'.
The two had a lot of time ahead of them to discuss injuries, as the team boarded an evening bus taking them to Maine, a day early due to the impending storm.
“I guess we’ll have a gimp competition, on the way to Maine, on the bus," said Iati, before the Great Danes practice.
Black sprained the ankle in Wednesday's 79-56 victory at the University of Maryland-Baltimore County.
UAlbany's senior guard only played nine minutes (scored nine points) and was really a non-factor. While he's said to be day-to-day, this quote may hint at Black's status for Saturday's game at Maine.
“If he can play, he’s got to be able to start and he’s got to be able to play heavy minutes," coach Will Brown said.
Brown said the team will prepare as if Black will not play, but they will "play it by ear."
Black hasn't missed any games this season, but he has been taken out of a game because of a hip injury and was slowed in one other game due to food poisoning.
“I thought both games we played well without him," Brown said. "We have played without him, obviously we’re better with him.”
Black will receive round-the-clock treatment from trainer Jay Geiger.
“I’m going to get him as ready as I can," Geiger said.
Geiger said there was a thought of him driving Black home from the game last night, since injuries like an ankle sprain tend to swell with the up-and-down of an airplane, but in the end that wasn't necessary.
Geiger will treat him with a number of different things, including electric treatment, ice, light therapy and he spent time in the whirlpool before the team departed.
Still, Geiger was not totally sure if Black would play, saying everything is a little different on gameday.
The adrenaline -- I wish I had a box of that in the training room," he said.
If Black doesn't play, he would get an additional week to recover, as the Great Danes don't play against until next Saturday (Feb. 16), when they host Hartford.
“Obviously, our best team is with Mike on the floor," Brown said. "But we want to make sure one, he’s healthy enough to play, two, he’s healthy enough where he can make an impact and three, he’s not going to hurt himself any further.”
Wednesday, February 6, 2013
VIDEO: UAlbany's Bob Ford on 2013 class
Tuesday, February 5, 2013
VIDEO: UAlbany's Brown on UMBC game
Monday, February 4, 2013
VIDEO: Siena's Anosike after Fairfield loss
Fairfield 64, Siena 54
A win would have put them in a three-way tie for sixth place, but instead the team finds itself in eighth.
Fairfield blew open a 41-41 lead with an 18-4 run that catapulted them to a 64-54 victory in Albany, in front of 5,597 fans.
The Saints (4-8, 6-17) were led by senior O.D. Anosike, who scored 15 points, grabbed eight rebound and dished out four assists.
The Stags (6-6) 14-10) got 18 points from senior Derek Needham and 11 off the bench from Maurice Barrow, who scored nine in the second half.
Siena plays next, at Loyola (Md.), on Friday at 9 p.m., in a game that is on ESPNU.
Fairfield 27, Siena 25 (halftime)
There were 11 lead changes and four ties in the first 20 minutes.
Siena was led by O.D. Anosike, who has eight points, but guard Rakeem Brookins picked up his third foul just before the break.
The Stags were led by Derek Needham, who scored eight points.
Siena gets Radford, UAlbany to Fairfield
Siena will host Radford, from the Big South Conference, on Sunday, Feb. 24. The Highlanders are 10-13.
The University at Albany will travel to Fairfield that weekend.The Stags are in Albany tonight to take on Siena. Fairfield is 13-10 this season.
VIDEO: UAlbany's Metcalf on SportsCenter
Last Friday, Metcalf flipped on his television and as SportsCenter went to a commercial, he saw himself in the game against Vermont, where he took a basketball to the...well you can watch the video (which is below) and see.
"It was funny," said UAlbany's senior captain, before practice on Monday.
Metcalf wasn't laughing at the time he was hit by the pass, from Vermont's Brian Voelkel. But as it was shown on TV, in SportsCenter's Not Top 10 segment, his phone was ringing off the hook, with texts and tweets.
"Once it's started running, I got tweet after tweet and text after text," he said.
The phone actually froze twice and Metcalf had to restart it.
"I didn't even know I had this many friends who watched ESPN," he joked.
While the play wasn't a highlight dunk or a great play, Metcalf has certainly taken his new-found fame in stride.
"It's not like there is something I could have done about it," he said. "It's just something that happened. I got a good laugh about it. It's going to be a funny story to tell, later on down the road."
Metcalf took a lot of good-natured kidding from his teammates, some of whom didn't see the airing on ESPN, but freshman Peter Hooley posted a tweet with the video for all to see."
"Pete Hooley made sure he filmed it to make sure everyone got to see it," Metcalf said. "It was all right."
He's also happy that it wasn't as bad as New York Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez's butt-fumble, which happened on the night of Thanksgiving, and is still SportsCenter's Not Top 10 No. 1.
"I'm glad it's not going to be re-shown again." Metcalf sald. "It wasn't worse than Sanchez's butt-fumble. No one will ever see it again."
Well, that's not exactly true, as below is the video that ran on SportsCenter (sorry Blake).
Sunday, February 3, 2013
VIDEO: UAlbany's Julie Forster on Growl win
Saturday, February 2, 2013
UAlbany 79, Binghamton 46
The Great Danes (6-4, 17-7) led from wire-to-wire and demolished Binghamton 79-46, in front of 4,392 at the 16th annual Big Purple Growl.
Jayson Guerrier scored 18 points, Jacob Iati added 16 and Mike Black finsihed with 13 points.
Brian Freeman and Jordan Reed each scored 14 points for the Bearcats (1-8, 3-19).
UAlbany 40, Binghamton 14 (half)
The University at Albany had one of its best halves of the season. The Great Danes led throughout the first half and built a huge lead. UAlbany shot 53.6 percent (15-28) from the field, led by Jacob Iati, who scored 13.
Jayson Guerrier came off the bench to add nine for the Great Danes.
Binghamton was led by Brian Freeman and Jordan Reed, who combined for 12 of the team's 14 first-half points. The Bearcats shot just 31.6 percent (6-19) from the floor in the first half.
VIDEOS: Siena defeats Manhattan
Friday, February 1, 2013
Masiello on the Mitch Buonaguro bandwagon
|Mike McMahon - The Record|
Even after the Saints 66-63 victory over Manhattan on Friday evening, the team is just 33-51 in Buonaguro's three seasons as head coach of the Saints.
Don't count Jaspers coach Steve Masiello among those who think Buonaguro hasn't done a good job.
“I respect Mitch so much," Masiello said following the game. "I think he's done a terrific job with his team. He's had some tough things happen this year, little injuries. He's managed his ball club as well as anyone in this conference. His kids are in every game. They compete, they're a class act and I'm just really impressed by the way he has his team playing.”
Siena has won three of its last four home and four of its last seven overall and Masiello says Siena is playing as well as anyone in the conference.
Siena 66, Mahattan 63
There's no debating this Saints (4-7, 6-16) team is playing better and they picked up another crucial league win on Friday night.
Rakeem Brookins scored 18 points, Rob Poole posted his first career double-double and Trenity Burdine chipped in 14 points and nine rebounds for Siena.
The Jaspers (4-7, 6-15) were led by Michael Alvarado, who scored 16, while Rhamel Brown added 13.
Siena 30, Manhattan 27 (half)
Siena leads because of an Rob Poole 3-pointer with four seconds to play in the first half. Evan Hymes leads the way with eight points and three assists, but also has three turnovers.
Trenity Burdine played well, scoring four points and grabbing five rebounds for the Saints, who shot 41.7 percent (10-24) from the field.
It was a balanced effort for Manhattan, but the Jaspers were led on the scoreboard by Shane Richards, who hit back-to-back 3-pointers and has six points. Eight different players have scored for Manhattan.
This game should come right down to the end.