CCNY BEAVERS GUNNING FOR CUNY BASKETBALL TITLE ON HOME COURT
NEW YORK, February 15, 2007 -- The last time The City College of New York hosted the City University of New York Athletic Conference (CUNYAC) basketball championships in 2001, CCNY’s eighth seeded Beavers went on to win their first men’s title in 21 years.
Head coach Andy Stampfel, then in his first year, also led CCNY back to the NCAA tournament for the first time in 25 years.
Stampfel, who clinched a second conference title at Baruch College in 2003, will be looking for another home court victory when the 42nd annual CUNYAC/Con Edison Men’s and Women’s Championships return to the venerable Harlem school February 17-23.
Sixteen teams – eight in each category – have qualified for the tournament in CCNY’s Nat Holman Gym that is named for the coaching legend who guided the Beavers to that historic NCAA-NIT Grand Slam double championship in 1950.
Seeded fourth behind defending champions York College, the College of Staten Island and Baruch, in that order, CCNY open against fifth seed City Tech in the men’s quarterfinals Feb. 18 (tip-off 2:15 p.m.).
Stampfel is confident that his side will repeat its eight-point victory over its Brooklyn opponents during the regular season last December and book a semi-final berth.
“We’re playing better than when we first played them,” said the Ronkonkoma resident, whose men finished 7-6 in CUNYAC play. “Our defense has been keeping us in games and putting us in situations to win.”
Three players, including a comeback star from the 2003 championship side, will be carrying CCNY’s hopes in the tournament.
Guard James Boddie, a 5-10 senior, is a CUNY All-Star who shares backcourt duties with fellow Bronx product Taleek Norman, a 6-1 junior.
Upfront, 6-3 Harlem native Alex Stewart, who returned this season after sitting out a couple of years, brings invaluable experience to the forward position. He was a freshman on the title winning side four years ago.
Stampfel picks top seed York as the team to beat in the tournament.
“If you ask all the coaches, they’re the clear (favorites),” he said.
But the Beavers are not about to throw in the towel. “Everyone is beatable,” added Stampfel. “We’ve just got to play the perfect game.”
That, plus home court advantage, may just do the trick for the Beavers.
The complete list of men’s quarterfinalists, by seeding, is: 1) York College, 2) College of Staten Island, 3) Baruch, 4) City College, 5) City Tech, 6) John Jay, 7) Lehman, and 8) Hunter College.
The women’s teams are: 1) Baruch, 2) John Jay, 3) Lehman, 4) Hunter, 5, Staten Island, 6) Medgar Evers, 7) Brooklyn and 8) City Tech.
Tickets for the tournament are $3 (all day access) for students, staff and faculty with CUNY ID, and $5 for anyone without CUNY identification. Call (212) 650-8228 for ticket information. Both championship games will be telecast live on Time Warner Digital Cable., Channel 94 City-wide and Channel 76 on Staten Island.
For a schedule of the men’s quarterfinals, visit: http://www.cunyathletics.com/News/mbasket/2007/2/10/menseeds.asp?path=mbasket
For the women’s quarterfinals, go to: http://www.cunyathletics.com/News/wbasket/2007/2/10/womseed.asp?path=wbasket