It’s time for a look at Long Island’s Division II, III and junior college programs. Yes, there is more to the island’s college basketball community than Hofstra, Stony Brook and St. John’s. The following is a breakdown of the men’s Division II, III and junior college programs. We’ll feature a women’s breakdown on Friday.
C.W. Post – The Pioneers lost one of the area’s best coaches in Tim Cluess to Iona. Cluess certainly didn’t leave the cupboard bare. The Pioneers (12-6, 9-2 ECC) are in a three-way tie with Queens College and Bridgeport for first place in the ECC (East Coast Conference). C.W. Post has a balanced scoring attack, led by Stefan Bonneau (18.8 ppg), Aaron Hall (14.9), Jonathan Kohler (11.9) and Tobin Carberrry (10.4). The Pioneers have gotten marvelous play from the bench and is averaging 81.1 points per game. Bonneau was named ECC Player of the Week after a 27-point effort in a win over NYIT and 22 points against Molloy. It was the second time he was honored this season. Hall and Kohler have also earned player of the week honors. C.W. Post has won eight straight games.
Molloy – It’s been a struggle for Molloy this season. The Lions have dropped five straight and host Mercy, weather permitting, on Thursday night. But Molloy (5-11, 5-6 ECC) does have some positive things going on. John Petrucelli has been excellent and earned his fifth rookie of the week honor. The freshman is averaging 14.1 points and 6.1 rebounds. He has help from former Elmont standout Brian Hutchinson and sophomore guard Jimmy Nolan. Things don’t look great now, but the Lions still have 11 conference games left to get their act together.
NYIT – Like Molloy, NYIT is experiencing hard times. NYIT has been riding the scoring output from senior forward Jerrell Walker and sophomore swingman Kayvon Roberts. NYIT (6-9, 4-7 ECC) needs more if it is going to make a run over the next 11 conference games. The good news for NYIT is that they have eight underclassmen, including Roberts, returning for next season.
Dowling – Finding scoring has been an issue for Dowling (4-12, 4-7 ECC). Michael Hill leads the Golden Lions with a 12.7 scoring average. Josh Malone (10.4) and John Merchant (10.4) are the only other players who have had the scoring touch. Dowling has also gotten beaten on the boards. Like NYIT, Dowling is young. He Golden Lions have just three seniors.
Adelphi – It’s been a two-man crew leading the way for Adelphi (11-7, 7-7 Northeast-10). Former Copiague star Richard Byrd (15.9) and Elmont graduate David Akinyooye (14.3) have lead the way for the Panthers all season. The Panthers have also gotten solid production from Chris Ranglin and Rob Johnson. Adelphi doesn’t have a lot of scoring off the bench, so it’s been on the starters to carry the scoring load. But Adelphi has been good enough defensively to compensate for their overall lack of scoring. Although tied for seventh in the Northeast-10 Conference standings, the Panthers are in good shape. As long as Byrd and Akinyooye are around, Adelphi will be a force.
St. Joseph’s – St. Joseph’s (14-2, 10-1 Skyline) has gotten production from all over its roster this season. Trey Black (12.6) and Seve Velazquez (16.6) have both earned Skyline player of the week honors. But the offense has come in droves from several other players, including Olivier Laurent (15.9), Chris Jimenez (13.7) and Vincent Russo (13.1). Barring a complete meltdown, the Eagles should cruise to the Skyline regular season title.
Farmingdale State – Farmingdale State (9-7, 8-3 Skyline) has held steady this season. One of their three conference losses was a 75-72 setback to St. Joseph’s, which tells you how tough the Rams can be. Josh Smith and Dyshaun Flournoy have been the leaders for the Rams, with help from Jermaine Abraham.
Old Westbury – Old Westbury (7-9, 6-5 Skyline) was hoping to get a shot at St. Joseph’s on Wednesday night, but the game was postponed due to inclement weather. The Panthers fell, 86-83, to the Eagles in Patchogue. With Lester Prosper (18.2 ppg, 13.3 reb), Jamal Little (15.5) and Frantz Granjean (15.3), Old Westbury can beat anyone in the Skyline.
Nassau CC – Nassau CC (9-9, 7-3 Region XV) is right where it should be. The Lions have sole possession of fourth place in the Region XV standings. Nassau has gotten great play out of former Baldwin standout Chris Mauldin (16.5) and has won two of its last three games, including an 82-77 overtime thriller against Bronx CC on Tuesday. Nassau could be on its way up.
Suffolk CC-Brentwood – Suffolk Brentwood (6-9, 3-3 Region XV) has been holding on with Quentin Adams.
Suffolk CC-Selden – It’s been a struggle for Suffolk-Selden (3-14, 1-8 Region XV), although it has two quality players in Nasha Smith (17.4) and Zach Krischer (12.8).