ECC's ghost may haunt NCAA bids

February 24, 1993|By Paul McMullen | Paul McMullen,Staff Writer

The East Coast Conference is down to three colleges, but former members of the ECC are having a major impact on Division I basketball. In the final week of the regular season for most minor conferences, one-time members of the ECC are atop all four of the leagues to which they scattered.

The leader of the North Atlantic Conference is Drexel, which moved to the NAC from the ECC in 1991. Delaware, which also moved from the ECC in 1991, went through the conference unbeaten last season, but it dropped to third place after losing Friday night to a Northeastern team with a strong Baltimore flavor.

Bucknell, the 1987 and '89 ECC champion, shares first place in the Patriot League with Holy Cross, to which it plays host Saturday.

Rider, an ECC finalist the past two years, strengthened its hold on first place in the Northeast Conference by beating Mount St. Mary's on Saturday.

Of course, Towson State was the class of the ECC the past three years, and the Tigers have developed a high profile in the Big South. They've already locked up the No. 1 seed for the conference tournament in Charleston, S.C., next week, when they'll be seeking their third NCAA appearance in four years. They would have gone last year, but the ECC didn't have a bid.

Towson State finishes the regular season at UMBC Saturday (3:30 p.m.), and the Retrievers, who have won four of their past five, can clinch a fifth-place finish by beating the Tigers. Towson State (17-8) is on an eight-game win streak that has Terry Truax's program in position to claim its first 20-victory season at the Division I level.

Senior guard Devin Boyd is closing in on another milestone. With 1,934 career points, he can become the 10th man in state history to score 2,000. UMBC senior forward Brian Watkins passed the 1,000 plateau in Monday night's win at UNC-Asheville.

Hofstra, Central Connecticut and Buffalo, the three remaining members of the ECC, are a combined 20-51.

MEAC track and field

Neville Hodge, the first name mentioned when Leonard Braxton left Morgan State to coach at Arizona State, will take over the Bears' track and field program March 1. Hodge, who has been the coach at UMES, was a standout sprinter for Morgan State and an Olympian for the Virgin Islands.

UMES' interim coach for the outdoor season will be Greg Moore, who was most recently at La Salle.

Morgan State's Troy McIntosh and UMES' Dawnette Douglass starred at the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference championships.

McIntosh, a Bahamian who was named the Outstanding Male Performer, set meet records in the 200 (21.7 seconds) and the 400 meters (48.8) and helped the Bears to another record in the 4x400 relay (3 minutes, 15.2 seconds). Douglass set a meet record in the 55 -- (6.5) and also won the 400 (57.1).

Coppin State had three individual champions: triple jumper Bobby Baker (51 feet, 8 3/4 inches ); pole vaulter Ray Richardson, a freshman out of Suitland (14-0); and Euan Hinds in the 3,000 (9:00.3).

Awards

Men's basketball

Coppin State: Sophomore F Stephen Stewart was named the Rookie of the Week in the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference for the fourth time. He averaged 18.5 points and 5.0 rebounds in a 2-0 week.

Salisbury State: Junior G Dameon Ross was named the Player of the Week in the Eastern States Athletic Conference. He averaged 28.0 points, 7.0 rebounds and 6.3 assists in three games.

Women's basketball

Goucher: Senior G Renie Amoss was named to the GTE District II College Division Academic All-America team.

Salisbury State: Senior G Jen Boone was named the Player of the Week in the Eastern States Athletic Conference. She averaged 24.0 points and 6.5 assists in two games.

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