Stony Brook's Bryan Dougher (10) drives around Binghamton's Jimmy Gray...

Stony Brook's Bryan Dougher (10) drives around Binghamton's Jimmy Gray (20) in the first half. (Feb. 27, 2011) Credit: Joseph D. Sullivan

The America East men’s and women’s conference tournaments will return to the University of Hartford, interim commissioner Shonna Brown announced Wednesday.

It’s the third straight season the tournament will be held at the Chase Arena at the Reich Family Pavilion (3,058 capacity). The first round, quarterfinal and semifinals will be held at Hartford, while the championship game will be held on the home court of the highest remaining seed.

The men's and women's first round games will be held Thursday, March 1, while the women’s quarterfinals will follow on Friday, March 2. The men’s quarterfinals will be scheduled for Saturday, March 3 and both the men’s and women’s semifinal tilts will take place Sunday, March 4.

The highest seeds remaining in both the men’s and women’s tournament will host the championship games with the men’s title game on Saturday, March 10 and the women’s final tentatively set for that same day.

Last season Boston University outlasted Stony Brook, 56-54, for the AE men's tournament championship. The 2012 AE tournaments will be held March 1-4.

Hartford defeated BU, 65-53, for the AE women's title.

The America East Men’s championship has used the present format since 1996. Albany hosted the tournament in 2009.

Prior to the combined format, which began in 2010, Hartford hosted the America East Women’s Championship seven times in the previous eight years. The women’s championship had utilized a single-site format since 1998. Maine hosted the first single-site event, followed by University of Vermont in 1999, 2000 and 2001, and Hartford in 2002-06. The tournament traveled to Binghamton in 2007 before returning to Hartford in 2008 and 2009.

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