St. John's took a big step towards securing an NCAA tournament at-large bid Saturday. But three other local schools moved closer to the Big Dance as well.
Iona and Manhattan both won their quarterfinal games in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference tournament in Springfield, Mass. And Stony Brook won its quarterfinal game in the America East tournament in Albany.
Iona (21-9, 17-3), the MAAC regular season champ and top seed, cruised past No. 8 seed Rider, 94-71. Tre Bowman scored a game-high 28 points. The Gaels will next play No. 4 seed Canisius on Sunday at 4:30 p.m.
Manhattan (23-7, 15-5), the No. 2 seed in the MAAC, pulled away from No. 7 seed St. Peter's in the second half and won comfortably, 72-58. Rhamel Brown scored a game-high 18 points. The Jaspers will play No. 3 seed Quinnipiac on Sunday at 7 p.m.
Stony Brook (22-9, 13-3), the No. 2 seed in the America East, manhandled No. 7 seed Maine, 80-54. Conference player of the year Jameel Warney had a team-high 15 points and eight rebounds. The Seawolves will play No. 3 seed Hartford on Sunday at 7:15 p.m.
(You can watch all three games Sunday on ESPN3.)
Wagner (19-12, 12-4), the No. 2 seed in the Northeast Conference, was upset at home in the NEC semifinals by No. 4 seed Mount St. Mary's, 77-72. Kenneth Ortiz, the three-time conference defensive player of the year, scored a career-high 26 points in his final college game.
And Hofstra (10-23, 5-11) -- the No. 8 seed in the Colonial Athletic Association -- gave top seed Delaware all it could handle in the CAA quarterfinals before ultimately losing, 87-76. The Pride led by three at the half. Zeke Upshaw finished his college career by scoring a team-high 23 points.