By: MIKE McCURRY The 36th edition of the Northeast Conference Tournament got underway on Wednesday, with eight of the league’s ten teams participating in the quarterfinals.It didn’t take long for a case of March Madness to infect the NEC. Aside from a 22-point St. Francis (PA) victory over Bryant, the other three quarterfinals were decided by a combined six points. #3 Wagner 72, #6 Fairleigh Dickinson 70 In a rematch of last year’s NEC title game won by Fairleigh Dickinson, Wagner knocked out the reigning champs behind Michael Carey’s career-high 32 points and 10 rebounds. It was the 26th career double-double for Carey, a Bahamas native who plays much bigger than his 6-foot-5 listing.
Playing without Hazlet (NJ) native and Raritan High School product Mike Aaman, whose college career is over due to a torn left ACL, head coach Bashir Mason’s Seahawks scored 24 second chance points. Wagner is the country’s second-best offensive rebounding unit, trailing only North Carolina. FDU’s Darian Anderson, a Second Team All-Conference selection, had 19 points, 10 rebounds, and 4 assists for the Knights. #7 Robert Morris 69, #2 LIU-Brooklyn 68 Entering Wednesday, the top two seeds in the NEC Tournament were a combined 24-0 in the quarterfinal round over the previous 12 years. Nobody told that to head coach Andy Toole and Robert Morris, as the Colonials completed the league’s first “7-over-2” upset since 2004. Trailing by one with 12.9 seconds remaining, senior guard and Hudson Catholic (NJ) product Kavon Stewart got the matchup he wanted before hitting an off-balance, game-winning floater over NEC Player of the Year Jerome Frink, a former St. Anthony (NJ) Friar. Follow Mike on Twitter Follow Adam Zagoria on Twitter And like ZAGS on Facebook
Wagner – FDU: Michael Carey Highlights— Wagner Gameday (@WagnerGameday) March 2, 2017
The senior with an unbelievable performance, scoring 32 points on 11-15 shooting along with 10 boards pic.twitter.com/MiYCZ0N1oE