2013-14 Conference Schedules Unveiled
CAMBRIDGE, Mass. — Coming off a season that saw a record number of its men’s and women’s basketball teams reach the postseason, the America East Conference announced its 2013-14 men’s and women’s basketball conference schedules on Thursday. The slate, which begins in December this season, will feature 144 games, including several marquis matchups.
“The upcoming basketball season will be exciting on many levels and we eagerly await its start,” said America East Commissioner Amy Huchthausen. “Last season’s success, including a record number of teams reaching the postseason and Stony Brook earning the league’s first men’s NIT win in over 20 years, serves as a great backdrop to launch the upcoming season, which should be more competitive with several strong teams taking shape. These schedules provide our fans with several intriguing matchups throughout the winter as our teams build towards our championship in Albany in March and look to fulfill every program’s goal, reaching the NCAA Tournament.”
For the ninth straight season, each team will play a 16-game, double round-robin schedule which will decide the seeding and matchups for the 2014 America East Men’s & Women’s Basketball Championship in Albany in March. The men’s and women’s seasons will consist of 72 regular-season contests each with the half the programs starting with one game in December and the other half kicking things off in January.
• New Hampshire will host Stony Brook in the first conference contest of the season on Dec. 15.
• UMass Lowell makes its Division I debut on Dec. 28 by hosting Vermont.
• Matchups between 2012-13 postseason teams frequent the early portion of the schedule with reigning league champion Albany hosting Hartford, which made its first-ever Division I postseason appearance last year and returns the bulk of its roster, on Jan. 4.
• A rematch of the 2013 title game occurs on Jan. 10 when the Great Danes visit Patrick Gym on Jan. 11 to take on Vermont. Albany beat the Catamounts, 53-49, last March to claim its third-ever America East crown. The return game will be Feb. 1 in Albany.
• Stony Brook and Vermont, which have combined to win the last four America East regular-season titles, first play on Jan. 24 on Long Island with the second matchup on the second-to-last game date of the season (Feb. 27) in Vermont.
• UMass Lowell and Vermont play the first conference game of the season on Dec. 1 in Vermont. It will be the first-ever America East contest for the River Hawks, who are starting their first season in Division I.
• Key matchups include a 2013 championship game rematch, which takes place on Jan. 12, with Albany visiting Hartford in a matchup of the two programs that have
combined to win the last three America East titles.
• The Great Danes defeated the Hawks to win their second-straight conference tournament title last year and complete a perfect season against America East foes.
• Hartford makes the return trip to Albany on Feb. 7.
• Stony Brook and New Hampshire meet for the first time on Jan. 11. The Seawolves look for retribution after falling to the Wildcats on a Kelsey Hogan buzzer beater in the 2013 America East Championship quarterfinals.
Both regular seasons will wrap up the first weekend in March, the women on March 1 and the men on March 2. For the second-straight year the conference will pair up rivals for the regular-season finale. Albany faces Stony Brook, Binghamton plays UMBC, Hartford faces Vermont and Maine plays New Hampshire.
Following the conclusion of the regular seasons, the 2014 America East Men’s and Women’s Basketball Championship quarterfinal and semifinal round action will return to Albany’s SEFCU Arena for the second-straight year and takes place March 7-9. The 2014 women’s championship game will also be played in Albany on Monday, March 10, while the men’s title game will be held on Saturday, March 15 at the site of the highest remaining seed. Both games will be nationally televised. The league’s full television schedule will be announced at a later date.
America East is coming off a season in which eight teams, a conference record, reached the postseason, including both of Albany’s programs, which became the sixth school to capture both basketball crowns in the same season a year ago and advance to the NCAA tournament. Stony Brook beat UMass in the first round of the NIT, America East’s first NIT win since 1987 and the league’s fifth postseason win in as many seasons. Vermont (CBI), Hartford (CIT) and Boston U. (CIT) joined Albany and Vermont in the postseason. Three women’s programs reached the postseason a year ago, including Albany’s second-straight NCAA appearance. Hartford (NIT) and Boston U. (NIT) extending America East’s streak of years with multiple teams in the postseason to nine, which is tied for the longest in the nation among non-FBS conferences.