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America East tournament has not been kind to Stony Brook

Stony Brook's Tommy Brenton drives the baseline against

Stony Brook's Tommy Brenton drives the baseline against UMBC's Malik Garner in the first half. (Feb. 19, 2013) (Credit: Joseph D. Sullivan)

Is this the year?

In the previous three seasons, the America East Tournament has been the place where Stony Brook's dreams of a first NCAA bid have gone to die. Here's the litany of heartbreak:

2010 - After winning the regular-season title behind Player of the Year Muhammad El-Amin, Stony Brook beat Albany in a tough first-round game but then was upset, 70-63, in the semifinals by hot-shooting Boston University, which got 24 points from reserve Corey Lowe.

2011 - Seeded fifth after Tommy Brenton missed the season with a dislocated knee, Stony Brook upset Albany and No. 1 seed Vermont to reach the title game at BU. The Seawolves had a 15-point second-half lead but lost, 56-54, on two foul shots with 2.4 seconds left by John Holland, who had 23 of his 27 points after halftime.

2012 - Stony Brook won the regular-season title, survived a first-round scare from Binghamton and then beat Albany, 57-55, on a buzzer-beating tip-in by Dallis Joyner to host the title game for the first time. Vermont scored only five points in the final 9:55 but held on for a 51-43 win over the ice-cold Seawolves, who shot 29.3 percent.