After three weeks of stagnation, the Keene State College men’s basketball team moved up two places in the latest D3hoops.com poll, it was announced on Monday.
The Owls (13-0, 5-0 LEC) now sit at No. 4, receiving 535 points. St. Joseph’s (Conn.) (13-0) continues to top the poll, with 622 points and 22 first place votes, followed by defending national champion Randolph-Macon (Va.) (13-1), which received 591 points and the other three first place votes. Also ahead of the Owls is No. 3 Mount Union (Ohio) (12-1). The top 5 is rounded out by Christopher Newport University (Va.) (15-2).
Keene State is one of four undefeated teams remaining in Division III, joining the University of St. Joseph as well as Catholic University of Washington, D.C. (13-0). Case Western Reserve of Ohio is the nation’s final undefeated team at 11-0.
The 13 straight wins comprises the second longest winning streak in school history.
The Owls maintained their perfect record in a 71-68 overtime victory over Western Connecticut State University on Jan. 7. Down by eight with 1:45 remaining in regulation, the Owls rallied behind the clutch shooting of sophomore guard Spencer Aronson to force overtime, and never trailed in the extra period to send the Wolves to their first loss of the season.
The Owls were led in scoring by sophomore co-captain Octavio Brito, who checks in at 22.1 points per game. Senior co-captain Jeff Hunter adds 19.8 points per contest, and has 10 double-doubles this season while ranking third nationally in rebounds per contest. Junior Mason Jean Baptiste (11.3 ppg), sophomore Aronson (9.8 ppg), fifth year Jeric Cichon (6.5 ppg) and junior Nate Siow (6.5 ppg) complete the Owls’ lineup.
The Owls are on the road twice this week, beginning with Tuesday’s trip to Eastern Conn. State, with tip-off scheduled for 6 p.m. Keene State then travels to UMass Boston on Jan. 14, for a 3 p.m. start. The Owls return home on Jan. 16 for a tilt with No. 13 Middlebury College in the final non-conference game of the season.