Skyhawks open season against Dominican tomorrow afternoon
Lee returns for his senior season after averaging 12 points per game as a junior. (PHOTO BY Mike Tureski/SportsPix)
EASTON, Mass. (November 9, 2017) – The Stonehill College men's basketball team has been picked to finish fifth in the Northeast-10 Conference's Northeast Division by the league's 15 head coaches, the Conference announced today.
Stonehill collected 55 points in the NE10 preseason poll to sit fifth in the NE10's Northeast Division. Defending NE10 Tournament champions Saint Anselm College (94 points) edged out Merrimack College (93 points) atop of the Northeast Division despite one less first place vote (6) than the Warriors (7). Defending NE10 Northeast Champions Southern New Hampshire University (79 points) received the remaining two first place votes and is picked third, while Bentley University (68) is ranked fourth. Following the fifth-place Skyhawks are Franklin Pierce University (44) in sixth place, Assumption College (27) in seventh and Saint Michael's College (16) in eighth.
Le Moyne College (91 points) has been picked to repeat as Southwest Division champions in the NE10, receiving 13 of 15 first place votes. The University of New Haven (71) is ranked second with one first place vote, followed by Adelphi University (57) in third, and The College of Saint Rose (56) in fourth, with the remaining first place vote. Southern Connecticut State University (54) rounds out the Southwest top five.
Moreton earned NE10 All-Rookie honors last winter. (PHOTO BY Mike Tureski/SportsPix)
Stonehill head coach Chris Kraus '06 returns eight letterwinners, including four starters, from last season for his fifth season as head coach of his alma mater. The Skyhawks will need to fill the void left by the graduation of two-time All-Region forward Ryan Logan, who averaged 17.8 points, 6.6 rebounds, 3.7 assists and a steal per game last season. Seniors Isaiah Bess (LaGrange, Maine/Hampden Academy) and KJ Lee (Huntington Station, New York/Long Island Lutheran) both averaged double-figures for the Skyhawks last season as returning starters. Bess contributed 11.9 points on 48.6-percent shooting from the field, with 3.4 rebounds, 1.3 assists and a steal per game, while Lee added 11.9 points on 55.3-percent shooting, with 4.7 rebounds, 3.6 assists and a steal per contest in his first season after transferring from NCAA Division I Marist University.
Stonehill was the top shooting team in the NE10 a year ago, ranking second in field goal percentage (49.7-percent), but connecting at a league-best 40.9-percent from three-point distance, and ranking third in free-throw percentage (76.9%) and fifth in scoring (81 ppg).
A trio of sophomores, led by NE10 All-Rookie Team selections Dan Largey (Oceanport, New Jersey/Peddie School) and Will Moreton (Minneapolis, Minnesota/Edina), will have an impact this season after seeing regular time as freshmen. Largey fell just one made three-point field goal shy of qualifying to lead all of Division II in three-point field goal percentage, averaging 12.3 points per game on 55.8-percent shooting overall, including 53.2-percent from three-point range, with 3.3 rebounds and 1.2 assists during his freshman year. Moreton contributed 9.0 points, 4.9 rebounds, a steal and a blocked shot per game, while classmate Brandon Twitty (Randolph, Massachusetts/Catholic Memorial) chipped in five points per game with five starts.
Largey led the NE10 in three-point shooting and earned All-Rookie Team honors as well. (PHOTO BY Mike Broglio/SportsPix)
Seniors Ryan Roach (Weymouth, Massachusetts/Cardinal Spellman), Joel Berroa (Lawrence, Massachusetts/Bridgton Academy) and Paul Graves (Marion, Massachusetts/Old Rochester Regional) look to offer added leadership this season. Berroa chipped in seven points and 3.5 rebounds per game a year ago.
Freshmen Owen Chose (Eden Prairie, Minnesota/Eden Prairie) and Owen de Graaf (Beamsville, Ontario/Choate Rosemary Hall) will look to earn their way into the rotation in their first season. Junior Henry Zezze (Falmouth, Massachusetts/Cape Cod Academy) and freshmen Alex Bradley (Holden, Massachusetts/St. John's of Shrewsbury), Chris Wills (Carver, Massachusetts/Carver) and Johnny Stretesky (Los Angeles, California/Notre Dame HS) will provide valuable depth.
Stonehill opens its 2017-18 season this weekend as it hosts its Tip-Off Classic inside Merkert Gymnasium on Friday and Saturday. The Skyhawks will open against Dominican (N.Y.) College tomorrow at 3:30 p.m., following the opening game between Assumption College and Bloomfield College at 1:30 p.m. Stonehill and Bloomfield will battle on Saturday at 6 p.m., following a matchup between Assumption and Dominican at 4 p.m.
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