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BOSTON – UMBC graduate student forward Joe Sherburne (Whitefish Bay, Wisc.) earned America East First Team and All-Academic Team honors as the America East Conference released its all-conference teams and major award winners prior to the America East Playoffs.
The league’s nine head coaches also recognized Retriever junior guard K.J. Jackson (Houston, Texas) and freshman guard R.J. Eytle-Rock (London, England). They tabbed Jackson to the America East Second Team and All-Defensive Team and selected Eytle-Rock to the league’s All-Rookie Team.
Sherburne earned his third All-Academic Team honor, but his first accolade on one of the all-league teams. He becomes just the fourth Retriever to land on the first team in 16 America East seasons for UMBC. Heading into the playoffs, the 2018 CoSIDA First Team Academic All-American ranks tenth in America East in scoring (14.3), sixth in field goal percentage (49.3) and fourth in minutes played per game (36.0) and assist-to-turnover ratio (1.6).
Sherburne became 2nd UMBC DI player to record 1,500 points, 500 caroms and 200 assists and is now ranked seventh in all-time scoring (1.534) and tenth in rebounding (588) on UMBC’s all-time lists. He has also the new UMBC record-holder in games played (133) and started (125).
A pair of newcomers in the UMBC backcourt, Jackson and Eytle-Rock formed the combination that propelled UMBC to a third-place league finish. Jackson is averaging 15.9 ppg over his last ten games, with eight straight (season-best) in double figures. He is currently ranked 15th in the nation with 67 total steals and 22nd with 2.2 per game.
Eytle-Rock took over the starting point guard role in December and started 21 consecutive games until missing the final two due to a hand injury. He averaged 6.4 points and 3.6 rebounds per game in America East Conference play and scored in double figures in four of his last seven outings.
The third-seeded Retrievers (19-12, 11-5 America East) take on No. 6 Albany (12-19, 7-9 AE) in the #AEPlayoffs quarter-final round on Saturday, March 9. Tip-off time is slated for 1:00 p.m. at the UMBC Event Center and the game will be broadcast on ESPN+.
UMBC is the No. 3 seed for the first time in 16 America East post-season tournament play... The defending America East champions have won the league title from the No. 1 slot (2008) and the No. 2 position (2018)… The Retrievers are 5-6 in the quarter-final round of the tournament… UMBC has won all three games played at home in 15 previous years of America East Tournament play.
UMBC and UAlbany have met three times in post-season play. No. 1 UAlbany won the first meeting, 79-65, in the quarter-final round at Binghamton University in 2006. The No. 6-seeded Retrievers defeated No. 7 and host UAlbany, 64-58, in the 2009 semi-finals. In the most recent meeting, the fourth-seeded and host Great Danes overwhelmed No. 5 UMBC, 86-56, in the 2014 quarters.
Sherburne is 27th among all active Division I players in three-point field goals made. He now has 261, moving into a tie for second place on UMBC’s all-time list. He is also tied for 16th among active players with 133 games played.
Freshman guard José Placer (Orlando, Fla.) was the Retrievers’ most effective player versus UAlbany in two games this season. He averaged 18.0 ppg and converted 14-of-18 shots from the floor.
The nation’s No. 20-ranked defense is allowing 63.6 points per game. The program’s best DI defensive scoring average of 63.6 ppg, which occurred in the 1998-99 season.
The win over UNH moved the 2018-19 squad into a tie for fifth place on UMBC’s all-time list for wins in a season (19)...Head Coach Ryan Odom has produced three of those seven seasons.
A Glance at the Great Danes: UAlbany (12-19, 7-9 America East) lost its first five America East Conference contest, but posted a 7-4 record in the final 11 games. The Great Danes won six home games and six road contests (6-9) this season, including the last three in a row.
UAlbany is second in America East in treys made (266) and 3-point percentage (34.7). They are last in turnover margin at -1.4.
Freshman guard Cameron Healy leads the Great Danes and is sixth in America East with 16.2 points per game. He has 13 more treys (102) than any other AE player and shoots 41.5 percent from long distance. Junior guard Ahmad Clark has come off the bench to average 15.8 points per game and has converted the most free throws (128) amongst the nine conference teams.
Series Record/Last Meetings: The Great Danes lead the all-time series, 26-9, and have won 10 of 16 contests in Baltimore. But UMBC has captured the last two contests in Baltimore, both played at the UMBC Event Center.
UMBC snapped an eight-game slide to UAlbany by rallying past the Great Danes, 68-60, for the program’s first victory in the UMBC Event Center last February 16. The Retrievers trailed by as many as seven points and never led in overtime before Ricky Council’s trey with 9.0 seconds to play provided the margin of victory in a 65-64 triumph.
UAlbany won the latest meeting and extended their home streak to 11 over UMBC with an 84-75 triumph on Feb. 23. It was the most points allowed by the Retrievers this season.
UP NEXT: The winner of this afternoon’s contest will advance to the semi-final round which will be played on Tuesday, March 12.