Men's Hoops Invades Beantown for PL Quarterfinal on Thursday

Men's Hoops Invades Beantown for PL Quarterfinal on Thursday

Wed., Mar. 3, 2016 • 7 P.M.  • Boston, Mass. • Case Gym (3,500)
American (11-18, 9-9 PL) at Boston U. (18-13, 11-7 PL)
All-Time Record:Boston leads 7-2
Last Meeting: Boston 71, American 51 — Feb. 10, 2016
Stream — PLN — Doug Brown (PXP),  Brian Mauer (Analyst)
Radio — WFED 1500 AM — Dan Laing (PXP), Jeremy Huber  (Analyst)
Live Stats

American Game Notes
Boston Game Notes

BOSTON — A rematch of the 2014 Patriot League Championship will open the quarterfinals on Thursday between American and Boston U. The Terriers took both games during the regular season  and the previous two last season.


Freshman Andrija Matic hit a free throw with less than a second remaining to give AU a 67-66 win on Senior Day Saturday at Bender Arena. Delante Jones led the Eagles with 18 points in 38 minutes. Jesse Reed and Marko Vasic also scoring in double figures, as did Charlie Jones. Reed had 14 points and seven rebounds and Vasic added 10 point and seven boards. Charlie Jones had 12 points and four rebounds. American shot 47 percent from the field along with 46 percent from the outside and 63 percent from the line.


For American to have a chance to move to the semifinals, the Eagles will need to call upon its veterans to lead the charge. Seniors Jesse Reed and Marko Vasic and junior Charlie Jones are the lone Eagles with extensive tournament experience. The trio all played significant minutes in the championship season and last years finals appearance. Reed is averaging 12.9 points in his career against the Terriers. Vasic has become more of an inside force this season for the Eagles averaging seven rebounds per game. Last season, Jones never saw the bench in both meetings against BU. If coach Brennan needs to call an audible, he can look to rookies Delante Jones, James Washington and Andrija Matic.  


Freshman Delante Jones was selected as the 2015-16 Patriot League Men's Basketball Rookie of the Year, as announced by the league office on Monday morning. The Chantilly, Virginia, native came on down the stretch by scoring in double figures in 12 of his final 13 games, and his performance had a great impact for his team as American won nine of its final 12 Patriot League games to finish at .500 in League action after an 0-6 start. Jones placed eighth in scoring (14.2 ppg) during Patriot League action and in the top 20 for the season at 12.0 ppg, leading all freshman in both categories. He scored 18 points or more eight times during the season, with seven of those coming in Patriot League games. He becomes American's third Patriot League Rookie of the Year recipient, and first in a decade since Derrick Mercer won the honor in 2006. 


In his final season with the Eagles, Senior Jesse Reed is averaging 12.8 points per game to earn his third-straight all-league nod. The Saltsburg, Pennsylvania, native will go down as one of the top 20 scorers in program history. He is currently 16th on the all-time list with 1,375 points and is the PL's second-highest active scorers. In league play, Reed averaged 13.6 points per game and led the team in field goals (82) and three-pointers (35) made. Reed was also selected to the Patriot League All-Academic Team. This is Reed's third selection after he won the PL MBB Scholar-Athlete of the Year the last two seasons. 


Mike Brennan is 5-1 as a head coach in the Patriot League Tournament. In his first season, Brennan's squad won all three games needed to capture the league crown. Last season, the Eagles fell to Lafayette in the PL Finals. During the tournament, Brennan's squad averages 62.5 points per game and allow 53.5 points against. 


Boston is one of the hottest teams entering the Patriot League Tournament. Like American, the Terriers have won eight of their last 10 and are 8-4 in the final 12 games. Boston is on a four-game winning streak against American since falling in the PL Championship in 2014. All-PL First Team member Eric Fanning is leading the Terriers in scoring, averaging 15.2 points per game. Cheddi Mosely has turned into a real threat and is second in scoring at 13.5 per game. Nathan Dieudonne has missed the last five games and was injured during the last AU-BU meeting. He was named to the All-PL Defensive Team. Dieudonne leads the Terriers in rebounding at 7.9 per contest and is fourth in scoring behind John Papale. Boston missed the services of All-PL Rookie member Kyle Foreman in the regular season finale against Holy Cross. He is shy of averaging double figures at 9.5 per contest. The Terriers were  ravaged by injuries this season after Cedric Hankerson and Justin Alston went down early in the season.