Sunday, March 2, 2008

Blown away in Burlington

Both teams emptied the bench for this one as Vermont cruised to an 89-58 victory in the regular-season finale, leaving the Black Bears in last place in the standings. The America East Tournament runs March 7-9 at Binghamton University in Vestal, N.Y.

For only the fourth time in program history, the Black Bears will begin the America East Tournament by taking part in the play-in round. The NCAA and the conference prefer the term "first round" games, but that doesn't fool anyone -- it takes a victory in the play-in game to even feel like you are a part of the tournament. Lose and everyone goes home before the real action begins.

Ask Stony Brook, a program that has lived in the play-in round, and will be looking to get its coach, Steve Pikiel, his first tourney victory and a spot in the quarterfinals. Stony Brook and the Black Bears will meet at 7 p.m. Friday at the Events Center on the campus of Binghamton University. The Seawolves swept the Black Bears during the regular season.

The Black Bears' last appearance in the play-in round was in 1998. Overall, UMaine is 1-2 in play-in games.

Maine's last tournament victory was three years ago against Boston U.


Jeeohcay said...

"Play in" game Friday night and then have to play the first game of the day at noon Saturday? Ouch.

tony said...

As a long suffering SEAWOLVES fan, I have come to accept the Friday night game as a given. If we can't win I'll be rooting for your BLACK BEARS to go all the way. Hey, I'm a JETS and KNICKS fan also!

Rocko said...

As a Minnesota Gopher fan accustomed to the Dan Monson era, "play-in" has become a regular part of my vocabulary. Only once in his 8 years did the Gophers avoid the "1st round" game. Hopefully that changes shortly with Tubby running the show.

Try to look at it like this, it worked for me. Just go to Binghamton with the motto, "Make it to Saturday." If the Black Bears "make it to Saturday," the rest is playing on house money.