Vermont men’s basketball advances to America East Championship

 

Chipping in a team high 18 points, sophomore Sandro Carissimo led the No. 2 Cats to a 77-73 double overtime win over the No. 6 Hartford Hawks, giving them the chance to face No. 1 Stony Brook for the America East title.

“Credit to Hartford, they played a heck of a game. We feel fortunate to come out with a win,” head coach John Becker said of the win.

First-year Four McGlynn, sophomore Luke Apfeld and senior Matt Glass added double-digit points performances, Glass hitting three from beyond the arc and McGlynn adding four threes of his own.

Sophomore Brian Voelkel had perhaps the best performances of the game, ripping down 12 off the boards, dishing off six assists and scoring five of his own points. Voelkel also came up with two steals in the game.

The semifinal victory sends Vermont to Stony Brook, NY to face the No. 1 seed in the America East Conference on March 10 at 11 a.m. The winner will advance to the NCAA tournament, which will begin on March 13.

In terms of Coach Becker’s first year experience, to win a game of this caliber in this way was monumental.

“As a head coach, this is the biggest game I’ve been a part of,” he said.

The 2011-2012 season for the Cats could end on Saturday or only begin if they beat their top competitors on Stony Brook’s own court. They lost in Stony Brook earlier this season, but came out with a decisive win in their most recent matchup in Patrick Gym.

 This time around, Becker is ready for the tough Stony Brook team, even if the Cats will have to overcome their less-than-superior record on the road.

“I think we have a game plan for them all ready to go,” he said.