The Mount Ida men’s basketball team is picked to finish third by the Great Northeast Athletic Conference coaches in the league’s 2017-18 pre-season poll, as the Mustangs return 11 letterwinners and four starters under first year Head Coach Brian Cerone this winter.
Mount Ida garnered a first place vote and amassed 91 points in the rankings, which have Albertus Magnus at the top spot and Johnson & Wales in the runner-up position. The Falcons collected nine first place votes and 118 points in the poll, while the Wildcats followed with 103 points and earned the other first place vote.
The Mustangs are led by senior co-captains Jayson Clark (Austin, Tex./Del Valle) and Kevin Conner (Mansfield, Mass./Mansfield), as Clark is the reigning GNAC Defensive Player of the Year and earned all-league accolades a year ago. Fellow senior Joey DeFillippi (Bristol, Conn./Bristol Central) is the top returning scorer for Cerone at 11.6 ppg, while senior Errald Jordine (Stamford, Conn./Hyde School) is the squad’s top returning rebounder at 5.1 caroms per contest.
Saint Joseph’s (Maine) and Lasell follow Mount Ida in the fourth and fifth spots in the GNAC pre-season poll, which is rounded out by Regis, Emmanuel, Norwich, Suffolk, Anna Maria and Rivier.
The Mustangs begin the 2017-18 campaign on Friday evening by taking on Sage in opening round play of the 2017 Wheaton Invitational in Norton, Mass. at 5:30 pm EST.