After an 18-year absence, the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference basketball tournament is coming to Baltimore.
Morgan State University and the Baltimore Arena will be host to the 23rd annual MEAC tournament March 10-13. Morgan State will be the site of the tournament's first three days, and the men's and women's championship games will be played at the Arena on March 13.
For the past three years, the MEAC tournament has taken place in Norfolk, Va., despite none of the conference's nine schools being in Virginia. For three years before that, it was at North Carolina AT&T; in Greensboro, N.C., MEAC headquarters.
Five MEAC schools -- Morgan State, Coppin State, HowardDelaware State and UMES -- are in or within 115 miles of Baltimore.
"That enhances the possibility of us having a good tournament next year and establishing a great foundation for the future," said Morgan State athletic director Kenneth McBryde. "We expect it to be here through 1997."
"With five schools around here and with the type of following Florida A&M; and North Carolina AT&T; have -- a lot of their alumni live around here -- it seemed like an ideal place," added Joe McIver, Morgan State's sports information director.
Baltimore was host to the tournament in 1974 and 1975.
Pound for pound
It's not as if Tony Vinson had been standing around for three weeks. Towson State's senior running back had three, 100-yard games. But Saturday's 36-carry, 196-yard, four-touchdown effort in a 28-27 victory over Connecticut was a breakout game for Vinson, who continues to leave last year's season-ending knee injury behind him.
"I told him during the week that we were going to give him the ball 30-35 times," Towson coach Gordy Combs said. "For one, we had an off week coming, and Tony would have a week to rest if he got banged up."
Instead, Connecticut's defense absorbed Vinson's pounding. His longest run was 16 yards. For two quarters, when the Tigers faced a stiff wind, Vinson -- who scored Towson State's last two touchdowns in the final 10 minutes -- carried the offense. Connecticut's defense, showing respect for the big-play ability of quarterback Dan Crowley, kept conceding enough ground for Vinson to do more damage.
"Against this offense, you have to decide how you want to die. Do you want a quick death or a slow one?" Combs said. Vinson has rushed 104 times for 629 yards and seven TDs.
A familiar score at Notre Dame
The women's soccer team at the College of Notre Dame is ranked in the Top 10 of the Division III South Region for the second consecutive year, and the main reason is a familiar one. Sophomore Corina Riismandel (Centennial High School), who set school record with 26 goals last season, is at it again. Notre Dame is off to a 7-2 start, and Riismandel has scored 14 goals and added two assists. Three times this season, she has recorded three goals.
A Mount of points
The men's soccer team at Mount St. Mary's is struggling, having lost its past three games to fall to 5-4. But the Mountaineers can't blame Mike Faubert or Dan Gaertner.
Faubert, a sophomore, has scored seven of the Mountaineers' 13 goals. Gaertner, a freshman from Glenelg High, has four of the team's 10 assists, including two that resulted in goals for Faubert. Together, the two have accounted for 20 of the $H Mountaineers' 36 points.
Sea Gulls on the fly
The Salisbury State volleyball team captured its second straight tournament last weekend, as it went 5-0 against Scranton, Gallaudet, Catholic, Washington and Albright to capture the Washington College Invitational in Chestertown, Md.
Shannon Cianelli (52 kills, 21 digs), Laurie Waters (22 kills, 56 blocks) and Jen Bowman (117 assists) each had fine weekends.
The Sea Gulls are 17-7.
On her mark
Towson State sophomore Shari Mark won her fourth race in four tries last week, as she completed the Tigers' 3.1-mile Oregon Ridge course in 19:21, in a meet against St. Francis (Pa.) and Richmond.