The eight-team NCAA Division II men’s and women’s basketball East Regionals get under way this weekend, and two local schools are hosting by virtue of their No. 1 seeds.
The University of Bridgeport, under the direction of 20th-year head coach Mike Ruane, will host the men’s event, with first-round play getting underway on Saturday at UB’s Hubbell Gymnasium. The Regional semifinals are on Sunday, followed by the championship on Tuesday for a spot in the Elite 8 at the Ford Center in Evansville, Indiana March 26 & 28.
No. 1 Bridgeport (24-4) takes on fellow East Coast Conference member Daemen (24-8). Other local teams participating include No. 2 St. Thomas Aquinas (25-5), which battles Rockland County rival and No. 7 Dominican (25-6). Ruane was named ECC Coach of the Year, and Bakary Camara (first team), Hashem Abbas and D’Vonne Trumbo (both second team) were named to the All-ECC squad.
On the women’s side, top-seeded Adelphi (27-3) takes on No. 8 Jefferson (20-11), winners of the CACC Championship last weekend, at AU’s Center for Recreation and Sport in Garden City on Friday. Fourth-year coach Missy Traversi has led her squad to the NCAA’s for the second time during her tenure. Leonie Edringer (first team) and Katie Murphy (second team) were both selected as All-NE10 performers, Quarterfinal winners meet on Saturday, with the Regional final set for Monday.
No. 5 Molloy (22-9) takes on No. 4 USciences (26-5) in the other quarterfinal involving a local squad.
The men’s matchups are as follows:
Game 1: # 3 Jefferson (27-4) vs. # 6 Stonehill (18-11), noon
Game 2: # 2 St. Thomas Aquinas (25-5) vs. # 7 Dominican (N.Y.) (25-6), 2:30 p.m.
Game 3: # 1 Bridgeport (24-4) vs. # 8 Daemen (24-8), 5 p.m.
Game 4: # 4 St. Anselm (21-8) vs. # 5 LeMoyne (19-9), 7:30 p.m.
The women’s slate:
Game 1: #6 Le Moyne vs. #3 Saint Anselm, 12 p.m.
Game 2: #7 Daemen vs. #2 Stonehill, 2:30 p.m.
Game 3: #8 Jefferson vs. #1 Adelphi, 5 p.m.
Game 4: #5 Molloy vs. #4 USciences, 7:30 p.m.