Hawks face season-opening challenge in Colonials
PRINCESS ANNE, Maryland - The University of Maryland Eastern Shore will open the 2016-17 campaign on Nov. 11 against the George Washington Colonials at the Charles E. Smith Center in Washington D.C.
The Hawks look to improve on last season’s 10-22 finish and will feature seven new faces on this year’s roster. GW finished last season 28-10 and won the National Invitational Tournament.
Bakari Copeland (Decatur, Georgia), who averaged 10.5 points and 4.5 rebounds a game last season, was selected Preseason Second-Team All-MEAC and the Hawks will be looking for big production from him this season.
Copeland is one of the few “proven” commodities on the Eastern Shore roster this season according to head coach Bobby Collins.
“I have to put all my faith in him,” Collins said. “I don’t have much of a choice. He has been working as hard to carry the weight and the torch from Mike (Myers) and Dom (Elliott). I have a big expectation of him and that is what he signed up for.”
Copeland was third in the team in scoring last season with 10.5 points and second in rebounding with 4.6 per game.
“I mentally challenge him every day,” Collins said. “So hopefully when he gets into the game, the game will be easy because I make practice tough on him, like I do my point guards. I get on my point guards hard so that when the game comes it’s easy.”
That point guard position is one that could see a lot of new faces this season for The Shore.
With sophomore Ahmad Frost (Cincinnati, Ohio) still recovering from last season’s leg injury, the Hawks return experienced point guards Thomas Rivera (Harlem, New York) and Marc Seylan (Paris, France).
But a plethora of new faces at the guard position arrived on The Shore as well with junior college transfers Logan McIntosh (Atlanta, Georgia), Michael Chambers (Winston-Salem, North Carolina) and Randell Pickett (Louisville, Kentucky) joining freshmen Colen Gaynor (Berlin, Maryland) and Montraz Oliver (Princess Anne, Maryland).
“Thomas Rivera is battle tested and he knows what to expect,” Collins said. “I’m happy with the way Logan McIntosh has been coming along and I expect great things out of him. He’s accepted the challenge, risen up and is playing the way we expect a junior college point guard to play.”
A pair of scoring threats at the guard position return to the court this season in junior Ryan Andino (Ft. Lauderdale, Florida) and Dontae Caldwell (Santa Ana, California). Andino was the conference Rookie of the Year two years ago, while Caldwell was an All-Rookie selection a season ago.
Andino shot 35 percent from behind the 3-point arc and made 53 total 3s, but battled early season injuries. He averaged 6.1 points per game.
Caldwell scored in double digits five times last season and averaged 5.1 points per game.
“Dontae is a veteran player and we know what he is capable of,” Collins said. “We are just asking him for consistency and we are asking him to mature.”
Derrico Peck (Atlanta, Georgia) is a graduate student, who contributed in all facets of the game last year and will be counted on to step up both on the court and in a leadership role.
“Derrico is a great young man, who is battle-tested and played at Northeastern, so he knows what to expect at a high level,” Collins said. “Later in the season last year, he really got comfortable in how he was going to play and the mark he was going to make on this team.”
Just one true post plyer returns from last year’s squad in center Isaac Taylor (Wachapreague, Virginia). But the coaching staff brought in 6-foot-6 red-shirt sophomore junior college transfer Devin Dorsett (Lithonia, Georgia) and 6-7 Tyler Jones (Atlantic City, New Jersey)
George Washington features plenty of size and could be a challenge for the Hawks in the paint. The Colonials have seven players on the roster who are 6-8 or bigger including 6-9 graduate student Tyler Cavenaugh who averaged 16.9 points and 7.9 rebounds last year.
The start of the George Washington tilt with the Hawks will be delayed for the raising of the NIT banner and a ring ceremony. Tipoff is expected to be at 7:08 p.m.
The early season will be tough as The Shore will play just three of 15 nonconference games at home in the William P. Hytche Athletic Center and will only play consecutive home games three times all season.
All games can be heard locally on Fox Sports Radio 960 AM WTGM or on www.EasternShoreHawks.com. Will DeBoer and David Byrd will have the call Friday on the Hawks Sports Radio Network.
Season tickets for the 2016-2017 season are on sale now starting at just $125, for all men’s and women’s home games. Did you know that a purchasing a season ticket helps all sports at Maryland Eastern Shore, not just basketball? To purchase season tickets, click here. For more information about the 1ticKet Drive, log on to the web at easternshorehawks.com or call 410-651-6499. It’s time to show your #HawkPride!
- Men's Sports
- Women's Sports
- FAN ZONE
- DONATE NOW
- Business Accessories
- Decals/Magnets & Auto
- Duffles & Totes
- Everyday Essentials
- Flags & Wall Decals
- Gifts, Food & Accessories
- Hunting & Fishing