BOSTON – The UMBC men's basketball program pulled down both America East Conference honors this week, as junior forward Will Darley (Timonium, Md./Dulaney) earned Player of the Week honors and freshman wing Joe Sherburne, (Whitefish Bay, Wisc.) captured the league's Under Armour Rookie of the Week accolade.
Darley recorded career highs of 23 points and 10 rebounds in UMBC's 75-63 win over Mt. St. Mary's on December 12, posting the Retrievers' first double-double of the season. The versatile 6'8" local product averaged 18.0 points and 9.0 rebounds per game in the two games this week and hit 16-of-27 shots (59.3%) from the floor.
Darley is averaging 15.6 points per outing since being inserted as a starter five games ago. He is shooting 57.8 percent from the floor, which is the second-best figure in America East and 86.4 percent from the line (fourth in conference) in his eight games played.
Darley also earned College Sports Madness' America East Player of the Week honors.
Sherburne averaged 20.0 points and 5.0 rebounds per outing in two games this week, hitting 13-of-23 shots (56.5%) from the floor and 9-of-19 (47.4%) from behind the arc. He scored a season-high 25 points and buried six treys at Duquesne on December 8. Sherburne's six 3-point field goals are the second-most ever for a UMBC freshman and are the most since Brian Neller hit six versus Hartford on March 9, 2013.
The Wisconsin native has made 17 (4.3 per game) of last 38 shots (44.7%) from behind the arc over the last four games. He leads the squad and is and ranked second in the conference in scoring with 14.7 points per game. Sherburne is also ranked in the top ten in America East in minutes played (2nd, 34.9 pg), treys per game (3rd, 2.9) and steals (T2nd, 1.5 pg).
Darley, Sherburne and the rest of the Retrievers complete the exam period this week and will take on Howard University in Washington, D.C. on Sat., Dec. 19 at 4:00 p.m. UMBC (3-8) has won two of its last three games, while the Bison have gotten off to a strong 6-5 start.
The contest will be a Homecoming for head coach Aki Thomas, who earned his degree from Howard in 2002, after leading the Bison to the MEAC Tournament finals in 2001 and earned All-MEAC Second Team honors. Thomas competed for current UMBC assistant coach Frankie Allen, who served as head coach for the Bison from 2000-05.