MEN'S BASKETBALL OPENS REGULAR SEASON IN RAINBOW CLASSIC
Nov. 9, 2012
PRINCESS ANNE, Md.--The University of Maryland Eastern Shore men's basketball team will open its 2012-13 season with an exhibition game against nearby Salisbury University on Friday, Nov. 2 at 7 PM. UMES will then compete against 11 non-conference opponents before opening its Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference play at Delaware State University (Dec. 1), then its full MEAC schedule will start January 12 versus Norfolk State University.
Season Schedule BreakdownHead Coach Frankie Allen and the Hawks will do more than enjoy the sunshine and a luau while on the island of Honolulu, Hawaii Nov. 10-12. UMES opens its season in the Outrigger Hotels and Resorts Rainbow Classic hosted by the University of Hawaii at Manoa. UMES will face Hawaii November 10 at 1 AM Eastern Time, followed by Houston Baptist and Arkansas-Pine Bluff on November 11 and 12, respectively.
The scheduled times for the Houston Baptist contest is 8:30 p.m., Arkansas-Pine Bluff is slated for 11 p.m. All three contests will be available through the game tracker and listen live links on www.UmesHawks.com .
As the Hawks attempt to battle jet lag leaving the west coast, UMES will head to Tampa, Florida to compete against host University of South Florida, Western Michigan and Loyola-Chicago November 16-18 in the University of South Florida Tournament.
Following two beach-bound tournaments to open the season, the Hawks will get to save its well-earned flight miles come December as UMES travels to MEAC rival Delaware State (Dec. 1) and the University of Maryland (Dec. 5). The Hawks then make two trips to Ohio to face Cincinnati (Dec. 8) and Ohio University (Dec. 22). In between the Ohio trip, UMES will head northeast for a battle with the Huskies of Connecticut (Dec. 17).
In its last non-conference match-up of the season, American University (Jan. 2) will host the Hawks for its last home-and-home series, which UMES won 64-62 in overtime during the 2011-12 season.
Saturday, Jan. 12 will be the Hawks' home opener versus Norfolk State at 4 p.m. The team will then host Delaware State (Jan. 19) at 4 p.m. UMES heads back south to the Sunshine State of Florida for a Saturday and Monday series with Florida A&M (Jan. 26) and Bethune-Cookman (Jan. 28).
UMES returns to Hytche to host its two North Carolina MEAC opponents beginning with North Carolina A&T (Feb. 2) at 4 PM, followed by North Carolina Central (Feb. 4) at 7:30 p.m. Both games are doubleheader contests.
Howard University will host the Hawks on February 11 before UMES travels to Norfolk State on February 16. Morgan State and Coppin State will be the first two opponents of a four-game home stretch for UMES. Those games are scheduled for February 16 and 18, respectively. The last two contests in Princess Anne will be versus Hampton and Howard, February 20 and 25, respectively.
UMES will finish the regular season schedule against Morgan State (March 2), Coppin State (March 4) and a single game at Savannah State (March 7).
The 2013 MEAC Basketball Tournament will begin March 11 in its new home of Norfolk, Virginia.
Hawks Return with New FlockUMES returns five members from its 2011-12 team, and adds five others in its pursuit to win the MEAC. Returnees Pina Guillaume, the lone senior, Louis Bell, Ishaq Pitt, Olatunji Kosile and Ronald Spencer look to anchor a new crop of talent and athletic skill. UMES has a mixture of youth and collegiate experience that should give it a blend of talent that continuously takes the floor this season.
A Change in the Guard(s)The Hawks will introduce four new guards in 2012-13. Dominique Cowell, Donald Williams, Kyree Jones and Travis Trim will all look to run the offense for the Hawks. The newcomers will join returning guards Pitt and Bell.
Bell was the 2011-12 three-point leader for UMES making 34.1 percent of its attempts. He also returns as the Hawks leading scorer from a season ago with an average of 7.9 points per game, Pitt marks second with an average of 7.0 PPG.
Cowell joins the team as a freshman guard from Hampton, Virginia out of Bethel High. Jones and Williams are a sophomore and junior, respectively, that bring youthful experience to the Hawks program. Jones was ranked the No. 56 point guard in the country in the 2009 high school class from North Carolina Tech Prep.
Williams enters his first season with the Hawks as a leading scorer all four years at Dr. Henry A. Wise, and was named a McDonald's All-American nominee. He is a skilled shooter, and will help the Hawks from various shooting areas on the floor.
In Land of the Big Men Joining the line-up of current big men will be Francis Ezeiru, a 6-foot 10-inch post player that should help round out a talented group of frontcourt players that also includes Troy Snyder. Ezeiru will join Olatunji Kosile as the Hawks' most likely centers, while Snyder, Ronald Spencer and Pina Guillaume will serve as the UMES forwards.
Ezeiru is a transfer student-athlete from Monroe Community College in New York. Snyder joins the program after transferring from the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay. Snyder has made a strong presence on both ends of the floor, with a likelihood of carrying over that intensity to the season.
Spencer and Guillaume return as the Hawks' second and fifth best rebounders from a season ago. Spencer made his first appearance against Air Force in 2011, and made a strong showing for the remainder of the season. He captured 146 total rebounds while shooting 46 percent from the field.
Guillaume grabbed an average of 3.3 rebounds per game, and made an average of 3.1 points per game.
Spencer holds the top spot in rebounds as he had an average of 7.7 rebounds per game last season, making a significant impact in the middle of the season.
Williams, Jones and Ezeiru should make a significant impact given their on-court talent with the ball, and Ezeiru's size and strength.
CoachesHead coach Frankie Allen and associate head coach G. Jamal Brown return for their fifth seasons with UMES. Former graduate assistant coach Curtis Peery will begin his first year as a full-time assistant. Peery will join Marlon Terry, in his second season. New to the staff is Charles Fasnacht, formerly a team services assistant with the Memphis Grizzlies. Prior to UMES, Fasnacht was an assistant coach for Glenvar High varsity boy's high school team.
The Hawks open their season at home January 12 versus Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference opponent Norfolk State University.
To find out more about the UMES men's basketball team, visit www.UMESHawks.com.