Courtesy: America East Communications

Rivals Vermont, Albany To Decide Men's #AEHoops Championship Saturday

Release: 03/09/2017

BURLINGTON, Vt. - For fourth time since 2006, Vermont and Albany will meet for the America East men's basketball title as the top-seeded Catamounts host the third-seeded Great Danes in the 2017 league title game Saturday at 11 a.m. at Patrick Gym. The winner will receive the league's automatic bid to the NCAA tournament, where America East teams have won eight games all-time, including two in the last five years.

The matchup is the most frequent in America East championship game history as the two teams will decide the title for the fourth time. The two programs have been the league's most successful over the past 15 seasons, combining to win 10 titles and make 16 title game appearance.

The game will be televised nationally on ESPN2 and WatchESPN with Mike Corey and Brooke Weisbrod on the call. Westwood One will also broadcast the game on national radio with Patrick Kinas and Mo Cassara calling the action. The game can be heard on stations around the country and Sirius Channel 137 or XM Channel 201 as well as online. Postgame press conferences can be seen on Facebook Live at facebook.com/AmericaEast.

Read more about the matchup and the teams:

The Matchup

  • Vermont (28-5) and Albany (21-12) will meet in the championship game for the fourth time.
  • The Catamounts enter the game riding the nation’s longest win streak (20 games) while the Great Danes have won seven of eight.
  • It's the third-straight year the No. 1 and No. 3 seeds will decide the title.
  • The two programs have combined to make 16 championship game appearances since 2003.
  • It will be the 11th time in 15 years that either Albany or Vermont wins the title.
  • The winner of Saturday's game will become the league's active leader in championships (6) and tie Boston U. for second-most all-time.
  • Albany has won five of the six playoff meetings between the two teams, including all three championship games (2006, ’07, ’13). Four of the five wins have come when the Great Danes have been the lower seed.
  • Road teams are just 6-27 in America East championship games, but Albany is 3-0, which includes wins at Patrick Gym in 2007 and 2013.
  • Overall it will be the 41st all-time meeting between the two programs. Vermont holds a 26-14 advantage, but Albany has won five of the last seven contests.
  • Vermont swept the regular-season series this year and held Albany to 49.5 points per game in the two contests.

No. 1 Vermont Catamounts

  • Vermont beat Maine and New Hampshire, holding both to only 41 points, en route to reaching its 10th championship game since 2003 and 11th all time.
  • The Catamounts are 5-5 all-time in title games.
  • Vermont is 29-9 in playoff games since 2003.
  • Became just the third America East team to go unbeaten in league play this year, was the first to do so in 25 seasons and first to go 16-0.
  • The Catamounts' 28 wins are a program record and the most ever an America East team.
  • Riding the nation's longest win streak, 20 games.
  • Ranked 5th nationally in field goal percentage (.500) and 12th in scoring defense, allowing 61.8 ppg.
  • Swept the major America East awards: Player of the Year: Trae Bell-Haynes; Rookie of the Year: Anthony Lamb; Sixth Man of the Year: Darren Payen; Defensive Player of the Year: Drew Wills.
  • Seven players average at least 6.0 ppg and nine have led the team in scoring at least once.
  • John Becker was named America East Coach of the Year for the second time. His 138 wins are the most ever by an America East coach in his first six seasons.

No. 3 Albany Great Danes

  • Albany beat Hartford and Stony Brook to reach its sixth title game in program history, all since 2006.
  • Albany is the first America East team to reach four title games in a five-year span since Vermont reached five straight from 2003-07.
  • Winners of seven of their last eight games, the Great Danes are a perfect 5-0 in championship games, including 3-0 vs. Vermont.
  • Road teams are just 6-27 in title games, but Albany is 3-0.
  • Albany's five America East titles won since 2006 are the most in the league and its five crowns are tied with Vermont for second overall.
  • Albany has won 20 games for the fourth time in five years.
  • Albany ranks 12th in the country in rebound margin (+7.4)
  • David Nichols (1st-team All-AE) and Joe Cremo (2nd-team) combine for 34.3 ppg, the second-most among America East tandems.
  • Nichols scored 40 points in the quarterfinal win over Hartford, tied for the third most in a playoff game and an Albany DI record.
  • Will Brown is one of just two head coaches (Jim Calhoun) to win five America East titles and his 19 tournament wins rank second all-time to Bill Herrion.

Cleaning up the Glass

  • Home teams are 27-6 in America East title games but Albany is 3-0 as the road team, which includes two wins at Patrick Gy.
  • This will be the third-straight year and ninth time overall the No. 1 and No. 3 seeds meet in the conference championship game. No. 1 seeds are 7-1 against No. 3 seeds in title games.

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