MANSFIELD, Mass. – Eastern Nazarene College finished regular season New England Collegiate Conference (NECC) play at 13-1 to clinch the top seed in the 2020 NECC Women's Basketball Championship. The Lions score a league-best 73.3 points per game, behind Stevie Orton's (Gilford, N.H.) 16.0 points per game. Kyra Fleharty (Lewistown, Mont.) is also averaging double digits at 11.0 points per game, and has been deadly from deep, shooting a league-best 38.8 percent from behind the arc. The Lions have earned a first-round bye and will await the winner of the match-up between No. 5 Dean College and No. 4 Becker College.
Defending NECC Champions, New England College secured the second seed, finishing the regular season at 12-2 in conference play. The Pilgrims are led by the reigning NECC Player of the Year, Rene Hudson's (Gallatin, Tenn.) 19.3 points per game. The Pilgrims earned the remaining first-round bye, and will play the winner of the No.6 Elms College and No. 3 Mitchell College match-up on Thursday, February 27.
Mitchell claimed the No. 3 seed, with a 10-4 conference record. Mitchell has seen stellar play from the 2019 NECC Rookie of the Year Amina Wiley (New Rochelle, N.Y.), who is averaging a double-double, scoring 16.3 points per game and pulling down 12.5 rebounds. Mitchell will host No. 6 seeded Elms College (5-9), whose Angelica Peguero-Flores (Springfield, Mass.) has been a force defensively, as she is third in the league with 1.4 blocks per game. The Blazers will travel to Mitchell on Tuesday, February 25.
The No. 4 seed is awarded to Becker College, who finished at 9-5 in NECC play. Becker is led by Cassidy Harrison's (Foxborough, Mass.) 18.5 points per game, good for top-five in the league. The Hawks will have their hands full, as they take on one of the league's top scorers in Dean College's Makayla Rudder (Springfield, Mass.). Dean, who finished tied with Elms with a 5-9 record, prevailed in the tiebreaker for the fifth seed by virtue of their in-region strength of schedule. Rudder, who scores 21.5 points per game, and the Bulldogs will head to Becker to battle for a chance to face No. 1 Eastern Nazarene on February 27.
The winners of the two semifinal match-ups will then meet for the Championship game on Saturday, February 29.
2020 NECC Women's Basketball Championship
First Round - Tuesday, February 25, 2020
Game 1: #6 Elms at #3 Mitchell – 7:00 p.m.
Game 2: #5 Dean at #4 Becker - 7:00 p.m.
Semifinals - Thursday, February 27, 2020
Game 3: Game 1 Winner at #2 New England Col. - 5:30 p.m.
Game 4: Game 2 Winner #1 Eastern Nazarene- 7:00 p.m.
Championship - Saturday, February 29, 2020
Game 5: Semifinal Winners at the highest remaining seed
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.