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Date Posted: 12:16:10 03/06/03 Thu
Author: MTS
Subject: MAAC Tournament predictions

First Round:

Iona 78 Loyola 53- Iona is just too much for the Hounds to handle, the Gaels build a 15 point halftime lead and never look back.

SPC 78 Rider 77- Mini upset, if you want to call it that. Kiki Clark and Jerry Johnson (if he's OK) are a treat to watch even if their respective teams aren't. Clark hits a running jumper with 2.3 seconds left to send SPC into the 2nd round. Once again Rider bites the dust early.

Marist 55 Canisius 52- I think this will be a low scoring defensive game. That is exactly what Marist wants. The Griffs have two fine senior guards, but Marist is a time that always plays tough defense. I think this could go either way, but I'm going with the Foxes here in a close one.

Second Round:

Niagara 81 Iona 80 (OT)- Maybe the most even game in the tournament. I was at leaning towards Iona, but the difference will be that the Purps will be at full rest. This is a total toss up game. Niagara's defense isn't that great and Iona may make them pay for it. However the Gaels aren't that deep and playing a fresh team after a previous game (albeit an easy one) will hurt Iona. Purps in a barn-burner.

Fairfield 67 SPC 57- Pesky Cocks will make this one a game for a while. Clark can pose big-time problems for a Stag team that has no guards. But the inside present of the Deng brothers will be too much to undersized SPC.

Siena 69 Marist 55- Foxes lead for much of the 1st half. However, with about two minutes left, the Saints turn a 5 point hole into a 3 point lead at the half. They never look back. Tommy Mitchell hits 5 3-pointers in the second half and finish with a career best 31, as Siena rolls. Mike Haddix collects yet another double-double.

Semifinals:

Niagara 90 Manhattan 88 (2 OT)- The curse of Gonzo. After finally get into the semifinals, Gonzo realizes that he must face another barrier- getting to the championship game! He can't do it. The Purps shock the Jaspers behind 34 points from T. Darden. A key Gonzo Tech costs Manhattan big late in the second overtime.

Siena 88 Fairfield 84 (OT)- Siena looks finished. Down 50-30 at halftime, it looks like the season is over. Not so fast, my friends. Mike Haddix stops the Dengs inside, and Prosper K, Tommy Mitchell and Antoine Jordan- nail huge shots sending the game into overtime tied at 81-81. Siena takes over from there, as Paul Williams, proving why BE schools wanted him, scores a stunning 8 points in overtime and the Saints go to their 5 championship game in 6 years.

Championship Game on ESPN:

ESPN's Len Elmore is in the house, so that means it's Prosper time. With everyone focusing on the Haddix-Williams vs. Mook Reeves match-up, no one could have predicted this! Saving his best for last, the Canadian, scores 34 points, and dishes out 13 assists as the Saints defeated Niagara for the MAAC title, 79-61. The Purps defense fails them again, as Siena is open for shots all over all night. Siena takes the Purps in the MAAC title game again.

The Saints will then get a 14 seed on selection Sunday! Winning their 3rd title in 5 years, Siena is the TRUE standard of ALL time in the MAAC!

What are your predictions? Thoughts?

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