New England College Men's and Women's Basketball Teams Head to NCAA First Round

New England College Men's and Women's Basketball Teams Head to NCAA First Round

The New England College (NEC) men’s and women's basketball teams are preparing to head to the first round of the NCAA Division III Tournament, with games tipping off on Friday, March 6.

The Pilgrim men knocked off Mitchell College, 92-90, in the New England Collegiate Conference (NECC) Championship, earning the conference’s automatic qualifier. They will travel to Tufts University to take on Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI), in the first round of the NCAA Division III Tournament.

NEC, currently ranked No. 11 in the Northeast in the most recent NCAA D3 regional rankings, is on a 10-game winning streak, with their last loss coming on January 22. The Pilgrims average 89.5 point per game, behind Izaiah Winston-Brooks’ 18.0 points per game. Defensively, the NECC Defensive Player of the Year, Calvin Cheek, leads the nation with 4.3 steals per game.

Coming out of the Liberty League, RPI (23-4) earned an at-large bid into the tournament. Their 23 wins is a program record, The Engineers currently sit as the number two team in the East in the latest NCAA D3 Regional Rankings.

The game will start at 3:30 p.m. Tickets are $12 for adults and $7 for students / senior citizens. They will go on sale Friday at 2:30 pm and Saturday at 5 pm. 

The winner of this matchup will move on to the second round of the NCAA Tournament at Tufts University against the winner of Tufts and Western Connecticut on March 7th at 6:00 pm.

Live StatsVideo 

The Pilgrim women will head up to Ithaca, New York to take on the Bombers of Ithaca College in the first round of the NCAA Division III Women's Basketball Tournament, on Friday, March 6th at 7:00 pm.

The Pilgrims upset top-seeded Eastern Nazarene College, 84-81, to win their second consecutive NECC title, earning the conference's automatic qualifier.

NEC is currently 21-6, while averaging 73.8 points per game, behind Rene Hudson’s 19.9 points per game.

Ithaca (22-5) also earned an automatic berth, winning the Liberty League title for the second consecutive year.

Live Stats | Video

The winner of this matchup will stay at Ithaca College and play the winner of the Williams vs. Albright Game on Saturday, March 7th at 5:00 pm.

Tickets are $7 for adults and $5 for students / senior citizens. 

ABOUT THE NECC 

The NECC began competition in the 2008-09 academic year and current member institutions compete across 15 sports. The NECC membership focuses on providing athletic competition among institutions that share similar academic aspirations and are committed to the importance of the total educational experience for students engaged in sports. Current members include Bay Path University, Becker College, Dean College, Eastern Nazarene College, Elms College, Lesley University, Mitchell College and New England College.