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More MAAC Basketball

This Week in the MAAC

By Sydney Hunte

huntejrs@canisius.edu

February 21st, 2005

 

This Week in the MAAC: 2/21-2/27

 

With this week being the final week of the season, itís time for many teams to buckle down and make a stretch run to the MAAC tournament.  While Niagara and Rider may have locked up the top two spots, which team will win the regular season crown is still in question.  Seeds 3-8 are up for grabs as well, making for some big games this week before the teams head to Buffalo for the tournament March 3-7.  Hereís a look at some of the more notable games this week.

 

Game of the Week: Niagara at Rider (Saturday, 2pm)

This will no doubt be the game of the year for either team, and depending on what happens before this matchup goes down, the winner could walk away with the regular season title and the all-important bye to the tournament semifinals.  It would be a horrible time for the Purple Eagles to drop another road game and possibly playing themselves out of the top spot.  The Broncsí win against Fairfield on the 16th knocked the Stags out of contention for first place, making this showdown all the more important as it made the race for the bye a two-team race.

 

Dog of the Week: Siena at Loyola (Thursday, 7pm)

The Greyhounds were next-to-last going into the previous weekendís action but held a three-game lead over the Saints.  Loyola needs a win to possibly lock up 8th place in the conference depending on what happens in their other games this week.  A win by the Saints after upsetting second-place Rider on the 20th would give them a boost going into the tournament.

 

Other Notable Games

Marist at Iona (Monday, 4pm)

Hereís proof how close the race is in the middle of the MAAC: Iona can move into a tie for 4th with a win and have a chance to clinch a first-round bye in the tournament.  However, a Marist win and a Fairfield loss later in the day means that the Red Foxes will be tied for third and may send the Gaels to the bottom half of the conference standings.

 

St. Peterís at Fairfield (Monday, 6pm)

The Stags need to win as well to stay in the hunt for a first-round bye.  The problem is, so do the Peacocks.  Both teams need to bring their game with them because the losing squad will drop out of contention and stick themselves with a low seed.

 

Canisius at Manhattan (Thursday, 7pm)

Both teams are mathematically still in the hunt for fourth place, but Manhattan has the better chance of getting thereóa win could place them in a tie for the 4th playoff spot.  A Golden Griffin win ties them with the Jaspers in the standings, but they will need help to climb into the top half of the conference (namely from Iona and St. Peterís).

 

Niagara at St. Peterís (Thursday, 7pm)

The Purple Eagles havenít been able to lose on their home court, the Gallagher Center.  Unfortunately, they havenít been able to win on the road (4-8) and with the Peacocksí record at 8-1 at home and the playoff race tight, now is the time for Niagara to get over their road troubles.

 

Manhattan at St. Peterís (Sunday, 2pm)

The final conference game of the season.  This should be important for both teams because depending on this weekís action, one of these teams could be playing for the all-important bye through the first round of the tournament.

 

Next week Iíll have a preview of the MAAC Tournament.

 

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