NCAA Tournament Heats Up For Rockaway
Former Beach Channel High school star Rahshon Clark will get his first crack at entering the NCAA’s big dance this weekend. His Iowa State Cyclones bounced back from a rough start in the Big 12 conference to finish with a 9-7 record and 17-10 overall record. As the #5 seed, they will face off against Baylor in the first round of the Big 12 Tournament as of press time.
Clark made a good contribution to the turnaround Iowa State had as he started 16 of 27 ballgames, averaged 6 points and grabbed 4 rebounds per game. The selection committee could cement Iowa State in the tournament due to their victories over Kansas, Oklahoma and Texas Tec in the regular season.
Boston College senior Clare Droesch recently had an up and down week. The good news is that she was elected to the Big East all-conference third team prior to the start of the Big East Championships in Hartford. Droesch’s teammate, Jessica Deveny, was named to the Big East first team.
The bad news Droesch received was her Eagles being stunned by Villanova in the second round last Sunday 41-37. They scored the lowest points as a team this season. It was also their final game in the Big East as they transfer to the Atlantic Coast Conference for the 2005-2006 season. The Eagles will await their fate in the NCAA Tournament on selection Sunday.
Hofstra’s Wendell Gibson will have to settle for a NIT bid in his final season at the school. The Pride lost in the CAA Tournament to top seed Old Dominion 72-58 last Sunday. With a 21-8 record, they will most likely host a NIT home game in the first round.
Carl Benn- UMASS-Lowell
It’s been a season of growing pains for the UMASS-Lowell River Hawks. With only a .500 Northeast Conference record on February 2, Benn has led the young squad to five consecutive wins to end the regular season. The River Hawks finished with a 14-9 Northeast-10 conference record and 18-9 overall.
In the regular season, Benn was fourth in the team in scoring with 10 points per game and the team leader in steals and assists.
The #7 seeded River Hawks were recently stunned in the first round of the Northeast Conference Tournament by losing to #10 Merrimack, 72-68. Benn only scored 3 points in 38 minutes of action. The River Hawks can only advance to the NCAA Division II tournament if they receive an at-large bid.