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Archive for January 2009

Men’s Basketball vs. Stony Brook Preview

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Probable Starters:

UMBC (9-11, 33-5):
C- Justin Fry (7.8ppg, 4.2rpg, .405FG%)
F- Darryl Proctor (19.7ppg, 8.7rpg, .489FG%)
G- Chauncey Gilliam (10.3ppg, 4.0rpg, .552FG%)
G- Matt Spadafora (8.7ppg, 3.6rpg, 2/5apg)
G- Jay Greene (12.0ppg, 6.8apg, .367 3-pt%)

Key Reserves
G- Brett Burrier (1.3ppg, 0.5rpg,.316FG%)

Stony Brook (11-10, 3-5)
F- Dallis Joyner (6.5ppg, 3.6rpg, .397FG%)
G- Tommy Brenton (7.7ppg, 9.0rpg, .530FG%)
G- Bryan Dougher (12.2ppg, 1.7rpg, 1.8apg)
G- Muhammad El-Amin (14.9ppg, 2.5rpg, .451FG%)
G- Marques Cox (1.4ppg, 2.4rpg, 1.6apg)

Key Reserves
G- Chris Martin (8.0ppg, 2.8rpg, .400 3-pt%)
F- Demetrius Young (7.6ppg, 3.6rpg, .675FG%)
Desmond Adedeji (3.0ppg, 2.4rpg, .381FG%)

It’s easy to say Stony Brook has a better record than UMBC and already beat them once so they will win, but what you’ll miss is Stony Brook is playing very inconsistent basketball right now while UMBC is definitely turning it around. Justin Fry and Matt Spadafora have had fans begging them to turn it around and step up. Well the last four games they have gotten better each night out and it ended with an upset over Binghamton with Fry recording a double-double (16 points, 10 rebounds) and Spadafora just having an all around solid game with nine point, six rebounds, six assists, two steals, and a block. Those two stepping it up puts the starting five right were they need to be. Jay Greene and Darryl Proctor are far an away the best players on the team and you know what ot expect from them while freshman Chauncey Gilliam has scored double-figures in his last five games and looks like he is a solid third option.

What is most impressive though is the teams defense. They got destroyed by three’s all first half by Binghamton but didn’t change anything. Eventually they forced everything to be a three by completely cutting off the inside and that causes a lot of missed shots for the Bearcats. If UMBC can do that against Stony Brook they can smell a second straight win, first conference win on the road, and a turnaround this season.

BUt keeping up with Stony Brook will be tough defensively. It mostly will be interrupted Desmond Adedeji who is a big mismatch for Fry standing at 6-9 300lbs.

They key though will be to stop Muhammad El-Amin. He’s the catalyst for the offense and can really shoot the ball. If he gets hot that opens up every boy else. Personally I would go man-to-man to cut his inside lanes and use Spadafora on him. Leaving Greene on opposing point guard Bryan Dougher and Gilliam on Tommy Brenton. Greene is short and guys can shoot over him, but he’s a physical and scrappy defender that will make you work for your shots. While we all know I’m not a fan of Gilliam’s defense, he’s a size mismatch for any team. He has the quickness and height of a guard, but the size and strength of a forward. So how do you defend him? If you put a guard on him he can plow through him to the basket, if you but a forward on him he can move around him. That’s what makes him special. But that strength should help defensively against Brenton who is tall but slim for a guy 6-5. Finally, that leaves Proctor guarding Dallis Joyner. Joyner is a big guy, a mixture of Richard Flemming and Proctor, but Proctor is an outstanding defender (definitely the best on the team) and definitely won’t be intimidated by his size.

I know I make it sound easy defensively but guys will sub in, and sometimes the defense just won’t work. But based on tangibles, these are the match ups, and that’s what Monroe used last time. The difference though is this time we have the scoring to go along with it.

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Written by Corey Johns

January 31, 2009 at 7:14 pm

Posted in Men's Basketball

Tagged with ,

Women’s Basketball vs. Stony Brook Preview

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Probable Starters:

UMBC (12-8, 4-3)
F- Meghan Colabella (7.9ppg, 7.3rpg, 1.4spg)
F- Erin Brown (9.2ppg, 5.7rpg, .491FG%)
G- Carlee Cassidy (22.7ppg, 2.8rpg, 1.9apg)
G- Michelle Kurowski (13.8ppg, 4.4rpg, 1.6spg)
G- Michele Brokans (1.3ppg, 3.9apg, 2.1 assists-to-turnover ratio)

Key Reserves
G- Katie Brooks (8.6ppg, 3.2rpg, 2.4apg)
C- Tope Obajolu (4.4ppg, 3.8rpg, 1.2bpg)

Stony Brook (3-15, 1-5)
C- Sarah Kazadi (3.7ppg, 5.9rpg, 2.0bpg)
F- Kirsten Jeter (10.1ppg, 5.2rpg, 1.6spg)
G- Tamiel Murray (3.1ppg, 2.0rpg, .9spg)
G- Misha Horsey (10.7ppg, 3.0apg, 2.4rpg)
G- Joia Daniels (5.7ppg, 2.5rpg, .342FG%)

Key Reserves
G- Kairsten Nunn (8.2ppg, 3.8rpg, 1.7apg)

While UMBC is on a roll, Stony Brook is trying to rebound. Stony Brook’s just broke a five game losing streak with a win at Albany and will try to make it two straight against UMBC. But that won’t be really easy. UMBC’s offense should be able to click in this game because Stony Brook’s defense isn’t a slow it down defense that has killed UMBC all season. But the thing is UMBC actually isn’t the hot team like I said. They are playing much better than Stony Brook this season but they are coming off a loss while Stony Brook is coming off a win. What’s been the problem for UMBC this year is a tough, physical, lock down defense. Which they have face many times this season and it has really shut their offense down. Stony Brook may not have that type of defense but you can bet they will be playing tough at home. No game in the America East is safe ever, and Stony Brook is going to try to prove that. What UMBC has to do to not fall victim to Stony Brook is do what they have been doing, run the court, wear down their shallow bench, and uses your deep bench to your advantage.

Written by Corey Johns

January 31, 2009 at 6:42 pm

Men’s Basketball Gets Much Needed Win Over First Place Binghamton, 84-78

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At first glance the game looked like it was going to follow the same story that we’ve seen far to many times this season. UMBC gets down by double figures early, ties it at the end, but can’t hold on at the end. This time they didn’t let that happen though. In the first six minutes UMBC was down 17 points but rallied back to cut the Binghamton Lead to just nine at the half. Binghamton just racked up threes early. Tiki Mayben and Brandon Herbert combined for eight threes and really put the pressure on UMBC to get something going ion a hurry.

UMBC wound up switching from the 2-3 zone (which cuts off inside scoring and forces things outside) to man to man (which forces things inside. Going zone early wasn’t a bad plan as Binghamton is one of the worst three point shooting teams in the conference, but they shot the lights out and hit every shots. When they switched to man-to-man the dynamic of the game really changed. Binghamton never seemed to be able to get things going and just struggled the entire time.

The second half was a completely different story. UMBC pressured Binghamton and just didn’t give up. 12 minutes left in the game UMBC finally got the led and didn’t give it up.

Naturally Darryl Proctor and Jay Greene were the catalyst in the win. Proctor scored 26 points with nine rebounds while Greene scored 18 with seven assists. The stats don’t give Proctor the credit he deserves though. He was absolutely magnificent, offensively, defensively, he rallied the team, he just did everything he could to win the game.

Greene however played an abnormal game from what we’ve seen. He only had three assists in the first half because Binghamton defenders kept trying to block passes but opened up scoring opportunities for him.

Gilliam scored in double-figures for the fifth straight game. He scored 15 and was just physical, putting pressure on the Binghamton defense.

But everybody had a hand in this win. Matt Spadafora is drastically improving in all facets of the game. He scored nine points, had six assists, and six rebounds.

The biggest improvement though came from Justin Fry. He played great interior defense but also had a double-double matching his career high points with 16 and also grabbed 10 rebounds. The past two games he’s been improving a lot but definitely got to where the team needs him to be for the rest of the season.

Surprisingly with a 1-3 record in the last four games UMBC may just be the hottest team in the conference. They lost to Boston U and Albany but really showed a lot of improvement in both those games and just played phenomenally against Binghamton. Any coach will tell you that the key to victory is overcoming adversity, and UMBc showed that yesterday.

Written by Corey Johns

January 29, 2009 at 7:35 pm

Cassidy Scores 33, but Tough Defense Shuts Down Retrievers, Lose to Boston U 87-57

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The Story of the season for women’s basketball: good offensive potential but strong defenses shut it down with ease. Boston U has one of the best defenses in the conference and doesn’t have to score well, but they forced 23 turnovers and capitalized on it, turning then into points. Only six retrievers scored, three scored over five.

Carlee Cassidy has a fine game with 33 points and Meghan Colebella got back into the starting lineup and had a near double-double with 11 points and 8 rebounds. Other than them though the offense was shutdown. Michelle Kurowski was helf to six point while Chelsea Barker, Melissa Book, and Tope Obajolu were held to a combined seven points.

The difference was simply turnovers. Boston U scored 28 points off turnovers and just simply kept the UMBC offense hesitant and unable to make plays.

Written by Corey Johns

January 29, 2009 at 7:15 pm

Women’s Basketball vs. Boston U preview

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Probable Starters

UMBC (12-7, 4-2)
F- Tope Obajolu (4.5ppg, 3.8rpg, 1.1bpg)
F- Erin Brown (8.7ppg, 5.6rpg, .516FG%)
G- Carlee Cassidy (22.2ppg, 2.8rpg, 2.0apg)
G- Michelle Kurowski (14.2ppg, 4.5rpg, 1.7spg)
G- Michele Brokans (1.4ppg, 4.0apg, 2.71 assists-to-turnover ratio)

Key Reserves
F- Meghan Colabella (7.7ppg, 7.3rpg, 1.5spg)
G- Katie Brooks (9.0ppg, 2.5apg, .400FG%)

Boston U (12-6, 6-0)
F- Aly Hinton (6.8ppg, 4.5rpg, .359FG%)
F- Jesyka Burns-Wiley (18.5ppg, 7.3rpg, .471FG%)
G- Kristi Dini (12.6ppg, 3.9rpg, 1.3spg)
G- Christine Kinneary (11.3ppg, 4.7apg, .455FG%)
G- Amarac Umez-Eronini (10.6ppg, 5.1rpg, .483FG%)

Key Reserves
F- Kerry Cashman (3.2ppg, 2.7rpg, .500FG%)

Just like the men’s team, the women get the pleasure of playing the top seed in the conference tonight. But something’s got to give. UMBC has won three straight but Boston U is riding a seven game winning streak. Now Boston U will be a very tough test. They have four scorers in double figures and ar undefeated in the conference. But UMBC is no slouch.

Statistically UMBC is a better three point shooting team (.337-.321) a better rebounding team (39.2-35.3) and a higher scoring team (72.9-70.4).

This difference is Boston U has a much better defense (66.2appg-70.2appg).

With Meghan Colabella seemingly a starter of the bench her fresh legs will be an advantage for her rebounding wise down the stretch. I if UMBC wins this game it’s definitely from the bench.

Boston U’s bench averages 12.2ppg while UMBC’s averages 26.6ppg. UMBC is much deeper as well. Boston U primarily runs a nine person rotation while UMBC uses a 13 girl rotation.

Written by Corey Johns

January 28, 2009 at 6:46 pm

Men’s Basketball vs. Binghamton Preview

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Probable Starters

UMBC (8-11, 2-5)
C- Justin Fry (7.4ppg, 3.8rpg, .396FG%)
F- Darryl Proctor (19.4ppg, 8.7rpg, .480FG%)
G- Chauncey Gilliam (10.1ppg, 4.0rpg, .551FG%)
G- Matt Spadafora (8.7ppg, 3.5rpg, 2.3apg)
G- Jay Greene (11.7ppg, 6.8apg, 3.5rpg)

Key Reserve
G- Brett Burrier (1.4ppg, 0.6rpg, .375FG%)

Binghamton (12-7, 5-2)
C- Kyrie Sutton (1.8ppg, 3.2rpg, 1.4bpg)
F- Reggie Fuller (8.6ppg, 6.9rpg, .527FG%)
G- D.J. Rivera (19.8ppg, 6.1rpg, .477FG%)
G- Malik Alvin (12.7ppg, 4.2apg, 3.1rpg)
G- Emanuel Mayben (8.2ppg, 4.1apg, 3.7rpg)

Key Reserve
F- Moussa Camara (4.4ppg, .500FG%, .500 3-pt%)

Binghamton is an interesting team this year. Much like UMBC last year, Binghamton is building a championship caliber team on a load of transfers who are making an significant impact right away. D.J. Rivera is a transfer from St. Joseph’s who did not have to sit out a year and is making a huge impact right away as he is the conference’s leading scorer. Malik Alvin and Emanuel “Tiki” Mayben are also both transfers making significant impacts right now, all helping to make the most dangerous back court in the conference.

At this point though no team is unbeatable, just as UMBC has issues scoring, rebounding, and overall depth issues, Binghamton isn’t perfect either. First, they don’t have a tremendous three point game at all, which is good for UMBC because they don’t have to go three for two to match Binghamton’s scoring.

Most importantly Binghamton also is running a small bench. With Dwayne Jackson being suspended indefinately and Sean Watson and Theo Davis being injured for a lengthy period of time leave Binghamton with a nine man rotation, though they can play as many as 11 players on a given night. Binghamton’s bench though it far better than UMBC with Moussa Camara, Chretien Luska, Branden Herbet, and Jaan Montgomery all starting at least two games this season.

Binghamton also had issues wt bigman depth like UMBC, with Watson and Davis unable to play. Fuller, Sutton, and Montgomery are the only three forwards left available, meaning they are a very gaurd oriented team like UMBC.

This evens the field for UMBC though size-wise. Against Boston U and Albany UMBC was just too small to compete and have a severe lack of talent inside with only Fry and Proctor playing in the paint. Proctor is obviously one of the top forwards in the conference but playing 40 minutes wears a man down. With Binghamon only having three quality big men and slashing guard this could be an upset. UMBC has to keep guys out of the paint and if they do that they can win.

Defensively Greene probably going to defense Alvin as he is the shortest player on Binghamton’s team.

Matt Spadafora can hopefully continue to improve his offense but will be called on to defend Rivera. Rivera is a great guard but Spadafora is not a sloutch on defense.

This leaves Gilliam on the dangerous Mayben. Gilliam is not a good defenders anywhere in his game and Mayben is a good scorer. If Gilliam can use his strength to cut of lanes and keep Mayben out of the post is should cut out some Binghamton’s offense much like taking Jay Greene out with a defense.

Proctor will have to take on Reggie Fuller inside. Proctor is a great defender and could have a lot of success against Fuller both offensively and defensively.

This leaves Fry on Camara. Camara is a big center but not a huge scoring threat. If Fry actually plays with confidence and positions himself to rebound the ball he can do well.

Basically, UMBC is outmatched but is certainly capable of winning. UMBC has lost three straight and is desperate for a win. Now on their first game back home and first game of the semester fans should pack the RAC.

Written by Corey Johns

January 28, 2009 at 1:31 am

Posted in Men's Basketball

Tagged with ,

Erin Brown Named Rookie of the Week

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http://www.umbcretrievers.com/sports/wbball/release.asp?RELEASE_ID=4487

I haven’t exactly been keeping up with these but it’s a big deal. Brown scored 33 points with 14 rebounds in two games with a 19 point 10 rebound double-double against Binghamton on Saturday.

Again, I haven’t been seeing these but i’ll do better. UMBC has dominated this award this year in women’s basketball. IN volleyball Alyssa Lang and Allie Spaay just switched off and in basketball the big three freshman are also dominating it. Week 2-7 Katie Brooks (2), Michelle Kurwoski (3) and Brown (1) kept the award with UMBC each week.

UMBC has now won seven of the last 11 rookie of the weeks this season with Brown getting number seven this week.

Going back to last year UMBC has won nine of the last thirteen wth Meghan Colabella winning it in the final two weeks last season.

Needless to say UMBC is going to be good for a while with this much young talent on the team.

Written by Corey Johns

January 27, 2009 at 6:00 am