BY CORY NIDOH
SC Staff Writer
At Midnight Madness, the ESU Men and Women’s basketball teams showcased a little hint of what may come when the two teams open up their seasons.
The men’s first home game is against Penn State Lehigh Valley on November 12, and the women are slated to host Holy Family four days later.
At Midnight Madness both teams were introduced, played a five minute scrimmage, had a three point shootout, and the men’s team additionally took part in a slam dunk contest.
The women’s team started first as eyes were focused on Junior Forward Jessica Martin, the two-time All-PSAC East Second team member who will lead the Warriors this season.
Martin is tied for 7 at ESU in points with 550, 2 in rebounds brining down 420 and 1 in blocks with 137 through two years thus far.
Surrounding Martin on the court will be guard Helena Gemmell, guards Andrea Veres and Halie Cintron and center Michelle Boggs.
A year ago, the Warriors were 7-20 under fourth year head coach Maureen Smith, and they are looking to turn things around for the upcoming season.
The men’s team hit the floor next.
The men’s team is coming off yet another successful season under twelfth year head coach Jeff Wilson, who has turned the men’s team into a team that belongs in the top echelon in the PSAC and in all of DII basketball.
In a span of the last four years, the Warriors have reached the NCAA Tournament three times—2010, 2011 and 2013— along with four consecutive trips to the PSAC Final Four.
With their 82-37 record it paces the record books with most wins in a four year span in school history.
Wilson has many weapons on the court but the most noticeable one is junior guard Whis Grant. Grant has been a force to be reckoned with since coming to ESU.
The Plymouth Meeting native has been named to numerous All-Conference teams, All-Region teams, and more.
Most recently, Grant, the defending PSAC East Athlete of the Year, has been selected to the Division II Bulletin “Super 16” entering this season.
Grant has led the Warriors in scoring his freshman and sophomore year and is considered to be the Warrior’s top player.
But Grant has great help with a supporting cast that will consist of sophomore guard Malcolm Richardson, sophomore forward Wes Cherry, junior guard Matt Tobin, and senior forward Zechariah Runkle.
The Warriors are listed as one of fourteen teams to watch.
The Warriors had a taste of national recognition a year ago when they peaked at No. 9 in the NABC DII coaches poll on February 12.
The fall is slowly coming and going, and then winter will be here, and with winter comes another exciting season of Warriors basketball.
So if you’re a fan of powerful slam dunks, three point buzzer beaters, and intense rivalry games, then get ready for what should be another exciting season for the men and women’s basketball team.
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