ELMS COLLEGE UPSETS BECKER; WINS THIRD NECC TITLE

ELMS COLLEGE UPSETS BECKER; WINS THIRD NECC TITLE

2010-2011 NECC MEN’S BASKETBALL CHAMPIONSHIP SCHEDULE
Quarterfinals • Tuesday, February 22

#6 Daniel Webster (11-13, 5-9) at #3 Southern Vermont (15-10, 9-5), SVC 63-60
#5 Wheelock (10-15, 6-8) at #4 Newbury (10-14, 8-6), NC 68-61
* Game to be played at Hellenic College in Brookline, Mass.

Semifinals • Friday, February 25 (Hosted by Becker College, Leicester, Mass.)

#4 Newbury (11-14) at #1 Becker (22-3, 14-0), BC 84-75
#3 Southern Vermont (15-10) vs. #2 Elms (18-7, 11-3), EC 88-73

Championship Game • Saturday, February 26 (Hosted by Becker College, Leicester, Mass.)
#2 Elms (19-7) at #1 Becker (23-3), EC 79-65

#2 ELMS 79, #1 BECKER 65

BOX SCORE: http://athletics.elms.edu/sports/mbkb/2010-11/stats/ecm27.htm

LEICESTER, Mass. – Elms College senior forward Edgar Martinez (Springfield, Mass.) poured in a game-high 25 points and was named the New England Collegiate Conference (NECC) Championship tournament most valuable player as the second-seeded Blazers posted a 79-65 victory over No. 1 Becker College to earn the league’s automatic qualifier to the NCAA Regional tournament on Saturday afternoon at Becker College.

With the win, Elms improves to 20-7 overall and advances to its sixth NCAA Regional tournament in the last seven seasons. The Blazers’ victory over Becker also marks the program’s seventh consecutive 20-plus win campaign. Both Elms and Becker now await Monday’s NCAA selection show to determine their first-round opponent

Trailing  62-44 with 7:56 to play in the game Becker’s Moody Doherty (Roselle, N.J.) delivered a pair of layups,  and a free throw in a span of 30 seconds to pull the Hawks to within 13 at 62-49. A Rajai Leggett (New Haven, Conn.) layup cut the gap to 11 and set the score at 62-51. A pair of Markus Wright (New Haven, Conn.) foul shots cut the Blazers’ lead to 64-54 before Elms’ senior guard Cecil Avant (Southwest Ranches, Fla.) drilled a deep trey to increase the lead to 67-54 with 4:59 to play.

Becker’s Tyler Roberson (Irvington, N.J.) and Leggett each drained a three-pointer with under three minutes to play to close the gap to 11 at 73-62, but that’s as close as the Hawks got as Elms, which never trailed in the game, propelled its way to its third straight NECC title and seventh straight conference championship overall.

Martinez led three Blazers in double figures as senior forward Juan Alverio (Toa Baja, Puerto Rico) and Cecil Avant finished with 11 and 10 points respectively. Alverio added a game-best 19 rebounds , while Cecil Avant dished out seven assists.

Sophomore guard Brittain Purcelle (Tarrytown, N.Y.) and freshman guard Kurt Steiner (Rutland, Mass.) added nine points each in the winning effort.

Becker’s Rajai Leggett (New Haven, Conn.) scored a team-high 24 points on 11 of 21 shooting from the field, while Doherty totaled 15 points. Favors netted three treys and six assists to amass 11 points in the loss.

Trailing 17-11 in the first half, Terrence Favors (Boston, Mass.) drained a trey to pull the Hawks to within three at 17-14 before Purcelle connected for a long two-pointer. Cecil Avant then found Martinez streaking ahead of the defense to answer a Becker layup on the previous possession to set the score at 21-16 with 7:57 to play in the first half.

Elms increased its lead to 29-22 at the 4:36 mark when Steiner nailed the second of his two treys off the bench during the first half. Becker then stormed back with an 8-2 run highlighted by a pair of three-pointers by Favors to pull to within one at 31-30.

With a 1:34 on the clock, Elms’ junior guard Daniel Gonzalez (East Windsor, Conn.) sank two fast-break treys to give the Blazers a 38-32 advantage at halftime.

Elms shot 44.1-percent from the field in the opening period on the strength of five three-pointers and a 12-point effort from Martinez.

Favors netted 11 first-half points for Becker which shot 36.1-percent from the floor in the first stanza.

Leggett scored twice in the Hawks’ first three possessions of the second half to pull to within two at 38-36, but Elms responded with a 9-0 run highlighted by a Martinez trey to stake a 47-36 lead at the 14:50 mark.

Leggett delivered a layup and Doherty converted a basket underneath to pull Becker to within eight, and a Leggett hoop at the 12:45 mark narrowed the deficit to six at 49-43. Elms then used a jumper and two free throws by Martinez push the lead back to 10 at 53-43 with 10:56 to play in the contest, before a Steiner triple with 9:12 to play gave Elms a 15-point 58-43 lead.

2010-11 NECC Men’s Basketball Championship All-Tournament Team
MVP Edgar Martinez, Sr., F, Elms (Springfield, Mass.) 
Cecil Avant, Sr., G, Elms (Southwest Ranches, Fla.)
Terrence Favors, Jr., F, Becker (Boston, Mass.)
Rajai Legget, Sr., F, Becker (New Haven, Conn.)
Derrick Cenicola, So., G, Southern Vermont (Hamilton, N.Y.)
Chris Torres, So., G, Newbury (Brockton, Mass.)

LINKS:

BECKER TOURNAMENT SITE

BECKER LIVE STATS

Southern Vermont vs. Daniel Webster Game Program

Newbury vs. Whelock Game Program

Championship Game Program

Championship Packet and Directions

Game One Box Score: http://www.svcathletics.com/sports/mbkb/2010-11/boxscores/20110222_4fzt.xml

Game Two Box Score: http://www.wheelockwildcats.com/sports/mbkb/2010-11/files/wcm26.htm

Game Three Box Score:http://www.beckerhawks.com/sports/mbkb/2010-11/files/BCM26.XML

Game Four Box Score: http://athletics.elms.edu/sports/mbkb/2010-11/stats/ecm26.htm