It was again a mixed bag as our local teams made steps forward and a few steps back last week. LIU has won two straight, while Hofstra bounced back after a tough loss at Oregon State. Stony Brook is looking come back after a loss at Sacred Heart.
After dropping its first three games to start the season, LIU (2-3) bounced back with two straight wins. The Blackbirds blasted Radford, 81-59, and dropped Vermont, 80-75. The Blackbirds were up to their old trips as four players scored in double figures against Radford. It was the same story against Vermont as four players were on fire. Julian Boyd and Jamal Olaswere had 18 points each. Schedule for the week: Off.
Hofstra (2-1) followed up its season-opening win over LIU with a near miss against Oregon State on November 16. The Pride proved it could hang with BCS-school opponents in that game. The Pride came back with a solid win over St. Francis (NY) on Saturday. The Terriers had previously taken Seton Hall to overtime. Mike Moore had 23 points and 10 rebounds and Nathaniel Lester (13 points) scored in double figures for the third straight game. Schedule for the week: vs. FAU, Nov. 22; @ Rhode Island, Nov. 25; vs. Cleveland State, Nov.26; vs. Boston University, Nov.27.
Stony Brook (1-2) can’t be happy about its start to the season. The 30-point loss to Indiana and a nine-point loss to Sacred Heart two weeks later didn’t sit too well. But it’s only three games into the season and the Seawolves have too much talent. The good news is forward Tommy Brenton has scored in double figures is last two games. Brenton had 10 points and seven rebounds against Sacred Heart. Dallas Joyner has also picked up his offense and is averaging 9.1 points per game. They should be able to bounce back over the next couple of weeks. Schedule for the week: vs. Columbia, Nov. 22; @ Northwestern, Nov. 25.
St. John's (3-2) came up short in games against top-level opponents last week. It's hard to really come down on the Red Storm, especially considering the inexperience. Nurideen Lindsey missed two free throws at the end of the game that would've given St. John's a win over Texas A&M. That notwithstanding, St. John's youngsters have been impressive. Lindsey is averging nearly 16 points per game, while Moe Harkless is averaging 14.6 points and 6.8 rebounds. Once they get on the same page, the Red Storm will emerge in the Big East. Schedule for the week: vs. St. Francis (NY), Nov. 22; vs. Northeastern, Nov. 26.
On the women's side, Hofstra showed its mettle with an exciting 93-82 over St. John's. It was one of the most thrilling women's games this area has seen in a while.
The Hofstra (2-1) women have to be happy with their start. The Pride would have loved to upset Gonzaga (101-88), but it just wasn't in the cards. But Krista Kilburn-Steveskey's crew came back with big wins over Eastern Washington and St. John's. The Pride's offense has been fast and explosive. The team is averaging 90.3 points per game and has gotten contributions from nearly every player on the roster. Schedule for the week: @ Kansas State, Nov. 24; @ Drake, Nov. 25.
St. John's (1-2) has run into some problems due to its lack of depth. With Da'Shena Stevens still out (knee), the squad has struggled to defend the paint. St. John's struggled to run with Hofstra in Friday's loss. Red Storm fans shouldn't worry, because Hofstra is a legitimate team and won't go down as a bad loss at season's end. Schedule for the week: vs. Wagner, Nov.22; @ Iowa, Nov. 25.
Stony Brook (0-2) gets a lot of credit for showing fight in its first two games. The Seawolves held a 10-point halftime lead in last Friday's loss at Iona. This team will struggle with depth this season, but appears scrappy enough to steal a few more wins than many think they should. Schedule for the week: vs. Robert Morris, Nov. 23; @ No.25 Ohio State, Nov. 25.