Vermont, UNH to meet in semifinal Monday
BURLINGTON >> Cam Ward came off the Vermont bench to knock down 6 of 9 shots from beyond the arc to spark the No. 3-seeded Catamounts to a 99-82 romp past No. 6 seed Maine in the quarterfinals of the America East Conference tournament Wednesday night.
The victory sends Vermont into the semifinals, where they host No. 4 seed New Hampshire Monday night.
The sophomore was 9 of 13 from the field and finished with 24 points to lead Vermont. Ethan O'Day hit seven of nine from the floor to finish with 21 points. He also gathered in 10 rebounds. Kurt Steidl finished with 14 points and nine rebounds.
Vermont (20-12) shot a blistering 65.5 percent from the field and was 12 of 21 from long range (57.1 percent).
Isaac Vann finished with 26 points to pace Maine (8-22) and Aaron Calixte added 17 more. The Black Bears shot 28 of 66 from the floor (42.4 percent).
New Hampshire 56, Binghamton 51
DURHAM, N.H. >> Daniel Dion matched his career-high with 23 points to lead fourth-seeded New Hampshire to a 56-51 win over No. 5 seed Binghamton Wednesday night in the quarterfinals of the America East tournament.
Dion was 6 of 14 from the field, including four from distance, and made all seven of his free throws for the Wildcats (19-11), who advanced to play at No. 3 seed Vermont (20-12) on Monday. Tanner Leissner added 14 points and 11 rebounds and Jaleen Smith chipped in eight points.
Dion sank a 3-pointer to make it 34-33 with 16:12 to play and Smith hit a jumper to put New Hampshire on top for good, 40-39, with 11:39 remaining.
Willie Rodriguez made a layup with 12 seconds left to pull Binghamton to 54-51 with 12 seconds left but Smith answered with two free throws for a two-possession lead.
Rodriguez scored 17 points and grabbed five rebounds for the Bearcats (8-22).
Hartford 68, Albany 59
ALBANY, N.Y. >> Pancake Thomas scored 16 points and No. 7 seed Hartford upset No. 2 seed Albany, the three-time defending America East Conference tournament champion, on the Great Dane's home floor, 68-59 on Wednesday night.
Hartford was coming off a 75-59 loss to Albany in the regular season finale, the Great Dane's 19th straight home court victory. The playoff win snapped a nine-game tournament win streak by Albany and came 14 years to the day since the last time the two teams met in the conference tournament a game the Hawks won, 65-49.
Hartford came out quickly, taking a 38-21 advantage at intermission and holding off a second-half comeback.
George Blagojevic and Jalen Ross each added 13 points for Hartford (10-22).
Ray Sanders scored 13 points to lead Albany (24-8) and Peter Hooley added 11. Leading scorer Evan Singletary (19 ppg) was held to just six points.
Hartford advances to play regular-season conference champion Stony Brook Monday.
Stony Brook 86, UMBC 76
STONY BROOK, N.Y. >> Jameel Warney scored 27 points and grabbed a career-high 23 rebounds and top-seeded Stony Brook beat No. 8 seed Maryland, Baltimore County 86-76 Wednesday night in the opening round of the America East tournament.
UMBC was within 67-66 with six minutes left but its front line started to get into foul trouble. Nolan Gerrity fouled out with 5:34 remaining, Cody Joyce followed at the 4:48 mark and Sam Schwietz at 1:23.
Warney missed two free throws with 3:27 left but grabbed the rebound and was fouled after his putback. He didn't complete the 3-point play and Stony Brook (24-6) led 74-71. Warney took advantage of his size inside and made a hook shot for a five-point lead with 2:44 left and UMBC could not get closer than four the rest of the way.
Will Darley made eight 3-pointers and scored 32 points both career highs for UMBC (7-25).