Four Men's #AEHoops Teams Postseason Bound
For the third-straight year, four America East men's basketball teams will play in the postseason. Vermont, the 2017 America East men's basketball champion, will play Purdue in the first round of the NCAA tournament, while Stony Brook heads to the CBI for the third time and Albany and UMBC take part in the CIT.
The four postseason teams match the second-highest total in conference history. New Hampshire, which finished 20-12 and was also in line for a postseason bid, declined an invitation.
Vermont (29-5) earned a 13 seed in the NCAA tournament, matching its best seed in program history. They will face the fourth-seeded Boilermakers, the Big Ten regular-season champions, in Milwaukee on Thursday. Tip time is 7:27 p.m. ET and the game will be nationally televised on TruTV.
It's the second-straight year an America East team has earned a #13 seed in the tournament and the third-straight year the conference representative has been seeded #14 or better, which hasn't happened since 1999-2001.
The Catamounts will be making thier sixth NCAA appearance and first since 2012. The Catamounts completed their perfect 19-0 America East season with a hard-fought 56-53 win over Albany is Saturday's championship game. Vermont enters the tournament riding the nation's longest win streak, 21 games. Purdue (25-7) won its first outright regular-season title since 1996. The winner of Thursday's game will face the winner of #5 Iowa State and #12 Nevada in the second round Saturday.
Stony Brook (18-13) is making its seventh postseason appearance in the last eight years and will play at Illinois-Chicago Thursday at 8 p.m. ET in the first round of the CBI. America East teams have won seven CBI games all times as three teams have made the semifinals.
Albany (21-13) heads to the postseason for the sixth-straight year and will play in the CIT for the second time, hosting St. Peter's Thursday at 7 p.m.
UMBC (18-12) is in the postseason for the first time since 2008 after posting its most wins since that season. The Retrievers play their first-ever home postseason game Wednesday, hosting Fairfield at 7 p.m.
America East is having one of its best men's basketball seasons in recent history with five 18-win teams for the first time. It's conference RPI of 21 is two spots better than last year and the best since the 2008-09 campaign. The 54 non-conference Division I wins are the most since 2008-09 as well. America East teams have won eight NCAA games all time, including two in each of the last five years.