Last Friday night, the Monmouth Hawks welcomed the Hofstra University Pride at the MAC in West Long Branch, New Jersey. This game was Monmouth’s home opener and it saw the home team win the game by a 29 point margin as they defeated Hofstra 91 – 62. As a fan in the stands, I enjoyed watching this game for a few reasons. First, during the opening few minutes and the last few minutes Monmouth really played with a lot of aggression. They didn’t play with an aimless, angry aggression. Rather, they played with a focused intensity and it was exciting to watch.
Second, Sophomore Andrew Nicholas had a career night with 28 points. It was really something great to watch. In fact, he was named the Northeast Conference’s Co-Player of the Week for his effort.
This is a Monmouth team that has a lot of fan support and a lot of fan investment in the team. One of the primary reasons for the renewed support isn’t just the dedicated players on the court, but the great coaching changes that were made before the beginning of last year’s season. The biggest of those changes was bringing in Head Coach King Rice to help rebuild the program from the bottom up. Rice is an enthusiastic coach and seems to have a very positive, strong connection with his team’s leaders. Here are some of his post-game comments followed by some comments by Nicholas on his career game:
I don’t have much more commentary on the game because you can find much more information at the links below. However, I have a few pictures from the game that I figured I’d post here in case anyone was interested in taking a look. The Asbury Park Press reports that there were some 2,307 fans in attendance last Friday night and it certainly looked like it (and sounded like it). Here’s hoping that the excitement and attendance continues to grow at the MAC.
Normally, I wouldn’t make the full-size images available for viewing (I usually cut these things down in size so that they are easier on my server). However, since I only have six pictures to post, I left the high resolution images available for you to look at if you want. Enjoy!
Read more about the Hawks’ home opening win on Tony Graham’s blog and the Monmouth Athletics website.