Ever since the post-season was abruptly canceled last spring, Division I college basketball players have been eager to get back on the court. While the road to the tipoff was a bit rocky and there are still postponements and cancellations, teams in New York and New Jersey are in action.
St. John’s University notched two non-conference wins before beginning conference play with a loss to Villanova. Sophomore guard Leilani Correa was named to the Big East Women’s Basketball Weekly Honor Roll. Fordham University opened with one win, one loss and one cancellation. The Rams have non-conference games until Atlantic 10 action begins just before Christmas. Manhattan College kicks off MAAC play this Friday, Dec. 11.
Long Island University and St. Francis College played no non-conference games, starting their seasons with NEC play. Wagner College had its first two games rescheduled for January, so the first time on court will be this Friday against Seton Hall before starting NEC play next week.
Over in New Jersey, Rutgers University defeated Monmouth University in a non-conference game. The Scarlet Knights dive into Big Ten Conference play on Friday against Wisconsin. Saint Peter’s University has had one of the busiest schedules with four non-conference games. The Peacocks start MAAC play on Friday. The NJIT Highlanders started off America East play with one win and one loss against New Hampshire.
Seton Hall University had its first three non-conference games either cancelled or rescheduled. The Pirates are finally starting their season this week with games against Saint Peter’s, Wagner and Fordham. Fairleigh Dickinson University has scored one win. The Knights take on NJIT on Friday. Rider University opened up 0–4. The Broncs start MAAC play on Friday against Manhattan.
Other than D I, there is little hardwood action taking place. The CUNY Athletic Conference, which plays D III, has not scheduled any games nor have other D III institutions in the area. Queens College, a D II institution, announced it will not hold winter sports.
In professional basketball news, for the second year in a row the New York Liberty scored the top pick in the WNBA Draft. Coming off a dismal 2–20 wubble season that placed the team at the bottom of the league standings, there is a lot of building to do. This year’s number one pick Sabrina Ionescu is on the mend following extensive rehab and a procedure on her injured ankle. Liberty general manager Jonathan Kolb said the team would be exploring options during the free agency period before making a decision on how to handle its draft pick in the spring.