Today: Apr 21, 2024

Basketball season comes to end

Special to the Southern News | Southernctowls.com
The Owl’s season ended in the quarterfinals in the NE-10 tournament against UMass-Lowell.

ANDREW ANASTASIOStaff Writer

The final buzzer sounded on the Owls season last month after being defeated by the University of Massachusetts Lowell 86-68 in the Northeast-10 Tournament Quarterfinal.
From 2008-10, the Owls won just four games while losing 50. Because of their performance, the team was denied a tournament game for two straight seasons. In 2010, head coach Mike Donnelly, who recently finished his second season coaching the Owls, was introduced as the new head coach of the program. He has since led the Owls to an overall record of 26-28, along with Northeast-10 Tournament appearances in both seasons.
Despite an early elimination in the playoffs, Donnelly said he was content with how his team performed this season.
“Overall I was happy because we made progress,” said Donnelly. “We won two more games than we did last year along with three more wins in the conference and finished as high as the No. 5 seed. Overall I was really happy with the progress we made.”
Happy he was to have gotten out of the regular season with the fifth seed. The Owls finished the 2011-12 season with an overall record of 14-13. Two wins better along with two fewer losses then the season prior. Next year the Owls are graduating two seniors) Chris Harris and Kieran Ramsey). Despite the departure of those two, Donnelly said he is confident that his team will succeed next season with the returning cast.
“Kieran and Chris will be a big loss,” said Donnelly. “They provided a lot for us this year both on and off the court. However, with the guys [we] have coming back, we return Greg Langston who led the league in scoring as a sophomore, Trevon Hamlet who led the league in blocks, and Tylon Smith who really came through at the end for us at the guard position was named to All-Rookie Team. We’ve got seven key guys returning; that’s a strong nucleus because all seven guys will improve.”
This past season, the Owls led the Northeast-10 Conference in scoring with 74 points per game and finished third in blocks with 3.6 per game. Sophomore guard/forward Dominique Langston said the team needs to work on consistency if they intend on improving next year.
“We are young and talented, which is to our advantage,” said Langston. “We just got to make sure that when we have a lead, we keep the lead. We need to play harder like every game is our last.”
Freshman guard Luke Houston said playing for coach Donnelly has been an honor because of the guidance and determination he displays.
“It’s a real pleasure playing for [Donnelly],” said Houston. “He demands a lot from us and expects us to do the right thing in the classroom and on the court. He definitely pushes us to do our best every day in practices and in games.”
In the midst of offseason recruiting, Donnelly said that the program has targeted a few players that he hopes to have wearing an Owls uniform next season.
“Recruiting never stops,” said Donnelly. “Now that the season is over, we can focus on that right now for the next few weeks. We have targeted a few possible guys that we would like to bring into next year’s team. If we bring a piece here and there with recruiting and get better top to bottom along with the 12 guys we have returning, then hopefully we will be in a good position

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