Hawks are Hot!
Junior Ikea Witt scored a season-best 21 points in Saturday's game against Binghamton, helping Hartford clinch the America East regular season championship.
Erica Beverly and Paris Carter (right) won America East Rookie of the Week honors Monday, and Kenny Adeleke (center) was named Player of the Week for the seventh time this season.
Women Take Top Spot in America East
The Hartford women clinched the first-ever America East regular season championship in school history on Saturday with a 66-56 victory over Binghamton. That means the Hawks will head into the 2006 Friendship Cottage Cheese America East Women’s Basketball Championship in March as the #1 seed.
The women’s team has now won 15 games in a row, the second longest current winning streak in the nation (Chattanooga is first with 21 straight wins). The Hawks are undefeated in conference play, and have a 21-2 record overall.
As a sign of the team’s growing national profile, the Hawks received four votes – the most ever – in the Feb. 20 Associated Press Top 25 Women's College Basketball Poll.
In addition, Hawks forward Erica Beverly was named America East Rookie of the Week Monday for a record-setting 10th time.
The Hartford women have three games left in the regular season: Feb. 22 against Stony Brook (1 p.m.), Feb. 25 against Maine, and March 4 against Boston University (1 p.m.). Saturday’s match-up against Maine is the only remaining women's home game of the regular season. The game will begin at 4 p.m. in the Chase Arena, Reich Family Pavilion (Sports Center), and it will be televised live on New England Sports Network (NESN).
The 2006 Friendship Cottage Cheese America East Women’s Basketball Championship will take place March 9-12. The tournament will be held on the University of Hartford campus for the fifth year in a row.
Men in Third Place With Three Consecutive Wins
The Hartford men are also enjoying a strong end to their season. The men’s team extended its winning streak to three games, with a 52-46 victory over Binghamton on Saturday. The Hawks have now won five of their last six games, and have moved into third place in the America East conference.
On Monday, University of Hartford players swept the weekly America East men’s basketball honors. Senior forward Kenny Adeleke was named America East Player of the Week for the seventh time this season, setting a conference record for the most times anyone has earned that distinction in a single season. Teammate Paris Carter was named America East Rookie of the Week for the third time this season.
Adeleke, who was featured in Sports Illustrated earlier this year, was named to the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) All-District Second Team last Friday. One of 150 men’s basketball players from across the country to be named to the list, Adeleke now becomes eligible for the NABC Division I All-American Teams, which will be announced at the end of the season.
Adeleke also earned praise from ESPN college basketball analyst Dick Vitale last week. In his Weekly Roundball Chatter section on his website, Vitale called Adeleke “a player who deserves a lot more publicity on the national level.” Read Vitale’s “Weekly Roundball Chatter.”
The Hartford men have two games left in the regular season: Feb. 23 against Stony Brook (7 p.m.), and Feb. 26 against Boston University. Sunday’s contest against BU is the only remaining men's home game of the season. The game will begin at 2 p.m. in the Chase Arena, Reich Family Pavilion (Sports Center).
The 2006 America East Men’s Basketball Championship will begin with first-round, quarterfinal, and semifinal play March 3-5 at Binghamton University. The championship game will be played March 11 on the home court of the highest remaining seed.