FREDERICK, Md. - The Hood College men's basketball team, in collaboration with the MMI Division of the Centers for Advanced Orthopaedics, will host the MMI Tip-Off Tournament on November 9-10 in BB&T Arena.
The two-day tournament will begin with the Blazers against Gallaudet on Friday at 4 p.m., followed by Randolph-Macon and Immaculata at approximately 6 p.m. On Saturday, the consolation game tips off at noon, with the championship at approximately 2 p.m.
Admission to the MMI Tip-Off Classic is $5 per day. Hood College students with a college ID and children 13 and under are free. Tickets can be purchased in advance by clicking here.
Live stats and a live video stream will be available for all four contests. Follow the schedule at the bottom of this preview with complete links. A tournament page can be found by clicking here.
Scouting the Blazers
- Hood finished last year with a 10-15 record overall, including six wins in the Middle Atlantic Conference Commonwealth.
- Eight of the Blazers' top 10 scorers return from a team that set a school record by averaging 80.2 points per game in 2017-18.
- Anthony Pearson, who scored 26 points in an exhibition with Division I Mount St. Mary's last week, led Hood with 11.8 points per game last year.
- Michael Riley hit five 3-pointers against the Mount and was second with 11 ppg last season.
- Riley, Evan Wang, Mason Wang and Ian Eversull all shot over 40 percent from 3-point range a year ago.
- Mason Wang ended the year with a 36-point outburst at Arcadia.
- The Blazers added to the mix with five freshmen and transfers Alex Ischiropoulos (Elmira) and Keith Claiborne Jr. (Frederick Community College).
- Head coach Chad Dickman is in his fourth season guiding the Blazers. He is one of two Frederick County natives coaching in the tournament (see Josh Merkel below).
- The Bison went 9-17 in 2017-18 but went 8-8 in the North Eastern Athletic Conference. They lost to Wilson in the conference quarterfinals.
- Senior Jamal Garner was awarded the NEAC's Inspirational Award, given annually to a student-athlete, coach or administrator who has endured personal hardship that has led to bravery and dedication within athletics. He scored 4.4 points and grabbed 5.3 rebounds per game.
- Noah Valencia is coming off a season in which he was named to the All-NEAC Third Team. He scored 17.7 points per game on the year.
- The Bison welcome eight freshmen to this year's roster.
- Kevin Kovacs is in his fourth season at Gallaudet. He coached Team USA to the championship at the U21 World Deaf Championships over the summer with a roster that included Valencia and Wilford Troup.
- The Mighty Macs finished their final season in the Colonial States Athletic Conference at 13-12 overall and 9-9 in the league. Immaculata joined the new Atlantic East this season.
- Mike Piekarski was named All-CSAC Second Team last year after scoring 17.1 points per game last year. He knocked down 41 percent from 3-point range and grabbed 7.9 rebounds per game.
- Jordan Ambrose is also back after a season in which he tallied 13.9 ppg on 39 percent 3-point shooting.
- Just two freshman appear on the this year's roster. The Mighty Macs return 13 players who are either juniors or seniors.
- Jason Hyman enters his third year coaching Immaculata. He is a 2009 graduate of IU and led the Mighty Macs to the 2008 conference championship and an automatic bid to the NCAA tournament.
- The Yellow Jackets went 18-8 last year and were 12-4 in the Old Dominion Athletic Conference, advancing to the ODAC Quarterfinals.
- Montese Adams was chosen to the All-ODAC Second Team last year. He scored 11 points per game a year ago and hit 51 percent from the field and 38 percent from behind the arc.
- Buzz Anthony led the team with 4.6 assists per game last year and Jon Nowell knocked down 53 percent of his field goal tries.
- The Yellow Jackets added four freshmen to this year's squad.
- Josh Merkel, in his fourth season, is the reigning ODAC Coach of the Year. He is a Walkersville, Maryland native and played his high school basketball at St. John's Catholic Prep.