The MAAC now has two weeks of conference play in the books, after starting the new year with conference games.
The rest of the way will see MAAC teams butting heads until March 7, when a champion is crowned in Albany, but there is plenty up for grabs until then. Also up for grabs will be the 2018 MAAC tournament and beyond as Albany, Bridgeport and the restructured Nassau Coliseum project will vie for the tournament decision in the spring.
Until then, let’s look at the numbers that made the last week of 2015 and first weekend of 2016:
30 – Marist junior Khallid Hart became the 30th player in Marist history to score 1,000 points in their loss against Canisius on Friday. “I want to publicly congratulate Khallid on scoring 1,000 points,” Red Foxes head coach Mike Maker said. “I’m running out of words to describe his play and him as a person.” It’s hard to forget, but only because of injury Hart had a sophomore year where he averaged 14.7 ppg. He will not approach Chavaughn Lewis’ school record because of that, but Hart will be a threat as the Red Foxes’ main scoring option until then.
57 – The season-high total of rebounds that Iona compiled against Quinnipiac, a program built on and proud of their rebounding prowess. In that number were 23 offensive rebounds and seven from Jordan Washington, who used that to score his game-high 19 points in their win. Teams fear the Gaels for their shooting, but their presence inside is another factor teams will need to get concerned about.
3 – The number of overtimes Siena and Manhattan went to on Monday night, before that other 3 overtime game, which led to a brief scary moment when Tyler Wilson and Kenny Wormley went for a loose ball and hit into each other.
15.4 – Schadrac Casimir’s points per game last season, which won him MAAC Rookie of the Year. Unfortunately he was ruled out for the season on Monday after complications from a torn labrum in his hip combined with a sports hernia.
Tweet of the Week:
Seven players played more than 45 minutes on Monday night, the reward for each is a game on Thursday night.
Quotes of the Week:
“Inside is where I make my bread and butter. Right there on that block, and just do what I’ve got to do. If I see a double-team I’ll kick out, but if I don’t, I’ve got to eat.” – Iona junior Jordan Washington on his 19 point, 15 rebound effort at Quinnipiac
“They truly, truly remembered the last time we played them and what happened.” Monmouth head coach King Rice on if his team was out for revenge after losing to Canisius in December
“I think it defines our program. I thought this was a great reflection of a bunch of kids that were overlooked, who are blue-collar, who don’t mind rolling their sleeves up, who don’t want credit. I thought it was a great indicator of our program, and Siena as well.” – Manhattan head coach Steve Masiello after their three overtime win over Siena
“I feel like I’ve still got to get my rhythm back. It felt good seeing the ball go through the basket, because I was missing a lot of chippies in the first half. My team kept putting confidence in me, and when I got the seven in a row, I saw their reactions.” – Iona senior A.J. English on returning with 14 points, 10 rebounds and six assists in their win over Quinnipiac
“I got my legs under me, finally. It feels good, the wrist feels fine. I’m just happy we won.” – Manhattan sophomore Calvin Crawford on his career-high 14 point, five rebound performance against Fairfield
“If you look back at my teams, I’ve never played guys 37 minutes and I’ve had to, and that’s been tough. We’re not playing our true style of play, and that’s not an excuse, but we have to adjust to that a little bit.” – Manhattan head coach Steve Masiello on their lack of depth
“It just killed us. I told the guys we’ve been a very good free throw shooting team, a very good three-point shooting team and a pretty good assist team, and we weren’t good in all three of those areas. But I know that we have good days ahead of us.” – Fairfield head coach Sydney Johnson on his team converting 11 of 21 free throws in their 72-66 loss to Manhattan
“It does hurt the energy level because he’s an energetic kid. Not only is he a talented player, but he’s really energetic and we miss him on a lot of levels. We miss his production, his enthusiasm, and the opportunity to shorten some other guys’ minutes.” – Quinnipiac head coach Tom Moore on missing Chaise Daniels (knee) from the lineup
“That was probably the most important game for us to have Lavon because he handles the ball so much. Our plan was to get Lavon in the middle and have him do some stuff but he was a little out of sync and I think the fouls early bothered him.” – Siena head coach Jimmy Patsos on junior Lavon Long, who fouled out in 14 minutes of play against Manhattan
“We’re not having much luck this yea. From one guy to the next guy… to the sicknesses. Things aren’t going our way this year, but you have to try and make it go your way.” – Rider head coach Kevin Baggett after their loss to Quinnipiac dropped them to 0-3 in MAAC play
“It threw me off at first. He didn’t really tell anybody and on the bus just showed up and everyone was shocked. Pretty funny. At least it looks good on him” – Siena senior Ryan Oliver on freshman Evan Fisher’s new haircut
Ryan Restivo wrote the America East conference preview for the 2015-16 Blue Ribbon College Basketball Yearbook. He covers the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference, the America East conference among others for Big Apple Buckets. You can follow Ryan on Twitter @ryanarestivo or contact Ryan at rrestivo[at]nycbuckets.com.