On the eve of tonight’s game with Hartford at SEFCU Arena, several University at Albany players and head coach Will Brown had several different takes on what Wednesday night’s upset of second-place Vermont by lowly Binghamton means to the Great Danes.
The players seemed to feel it was a good thing, because it showed that no team in the America East Conference is invincible. It also created some more breathing room in the standings for the first-place Great Danes, who could lock up the regular-season title with two more wins.
But Brown had a much different opinion.
“We don’t want anybody’s help, and we shouldn’t need anybody’s help,” said Brown. “It’s a funny thing, because I kept getting text messages from so many people who were excited about Vermont losing. I try not to get caught up in that. I don’t get excited about what other teams are doing.”
The Great Danes will try to shake off their first loss since December when they take on the Hawks tonight at 7, but the discussion still centered on what they did wrong against Stony Brook in Tuesday night’s loss that snapped a 13-game winning streak.
“When you win so many games in a row and haven’t lost since December, you will stub your toe in league play,” said Brown. “We didn’t control what we usually do against Stony Brook. We didn’t block out for about 10 to 12 minutes in the second half, and all of our turnovers led to points for them.”
Brown is confident that his team will come out firing on all cylinders against the Hawks.
“I’m anxious to see how we respond,” he said. “We can’t play tight. For some reason, we seem to play with more of a sense of urgency on the road, but we need to play well at home, because we will be at home for at least the first round of the tournament. I know we will have a big crowd for this game.”
Senior forward Sam Rowley was very interested in the Vermont-Binghamton score.
“I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t very pleased with that one,” he said. “But we also know that it proves that any team can lose in this league. We can lose to anybody. This is a league where upsets happen. Everyone in this league knows each other very well, and the team that plays harder usually wins.”
Rowley said the Great Danes (12-1 AE, 18-8 overall) can’t wait to get back on the court after their loss to Stony Brook.
“When you haven’t lost for so long, I think our feelings were exaggerated. It was very quiet in our locker room after that game,” he said.
“But when we watched the film of that game, there were some obvious, glaring mistakes we made. The film doesn’t lie. I think we have tremendous energy. Our goal is to win our last three games. We want to get back on the court and compete.”
Ray Sanders echoed Rowley’s sentiments about the Great Danes bouncing back from the Stony Brook defeat.
“We are better than what we showed Tuesday night, but we still know that anybody can beat anybody in this league. This is Division I basketball.”
Rowley (14 ppg, seven rpg), Sanders (nine ppg), 6-11 Richard Peters (two ppg), Dallas Ennema (five ppg) and Evan Singletary (12 ppg) are the projected starters for the Great Danes.
Hartford (6-7, 13-13), which relies on the three-point shot, is paced by Mark Nwakamma (12.5 ppg, 6.0 rpg).
GAZETTE COVERAGEEnsure access to everything we do, today and every day, check out our subscribe page at DailyGazette.com/Subscribe
More from The Daily Gazette:
Categories: College Sports