Albany tops Vermont 79-73, claims top seed in America East

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — Sam Rowley scored a career-high 24 points and led Albany to a narrow 79-73 victory over Vermont on Saturday as the Great Danes enter the America East conference tournament as the No. 1 seed.

Albany (21-8, 15-1) will host eighth-seeded Maine (3-26, 2-14) in the America East quarterfinals on Wednesday, while Vermont (17-12, 12-4) clinched the No. 2 seed and will host seventh-seeded UMBC (2-11, 2-14).

The Catamounts held a 39-37 advantage at the half and led by seven points with 16:58 remaining. Peter Hooley and Evan Singletary then combined for nine straight points, and Albany pulled in front with 13:52 to play.

Vermont shot 5 of 6 from the line to close within 63-61 with 6:54 left, but Wheeler Baker answered with a 3 and Rowley made three field goals and two free throws in the final five minutes to help keep the Great Danes in front.