Former Newark star Javon McCrea enjoyed a stellar junior campaign for the University at Buffalo men’s basketball team last season.

That has translated to some early recognition this year.

McCrea’s latest honor came from the Mid-American Conference, which named him to its preseason first team. The 6-foot-7 senior forward was also selected to the Buffalo.com All-Big 4 team and the Lou Henson Preseason All-American team. The Lou Henson team honors the top Division I mid-major players in the country.

McCrea was second in the MAC last season in points per game (18), third in field goal percentage (56 percent) and fifth in rebounds (7.9). He also shot 71 percent from the foul line, a big jump from his sophomore season when he shot 56 percent from the charity stripe.

The Bulls were picked to finish second in the MAC East Division this year behind Akron.

McCrea started his season last Friday with 14 points, five rebounds and two blocks in an 82-56 loss to Texas A&M.

Wednesday against Niagara, he erupted for 31 points in a 91-81 loss. McCrea was 9-for-17 from the field and connected on 13 of 16 free throws. He also grabbed 14 rebounds — including nine offensive boards — picked up three steals and blocked a pair of shots.

McCrea’s outburst moved him within three points of fourth place on the Bulls’ all-time scoring list (1,512). His 14 rebounds were two off his career high.

McCrea kept the Bulls within reach against Niagara. He converted a layup that capped an 11-1 run to start the second half. The Purple Eagles countered with the next eight points to run out to a 12-point lead.

Tribunes fall

The Monroe CC women’s soccer team saw its season come to an end in the NJCAA District E semifinals over the weekend with a 1-0 loss to the Community College of Rhode Island.

Hayley Verkey (Mynderse) finished the season with eight goals and four assists for the Tribunes (13-5).

Sports Coordinator Gregory G. McNall’s “College Notebook” appears every Thursday in the Finger Lakes Times. It features graduates from Ontario, Wayne, Yates and Seneca counties who are playing in college. Call Greg at 789-3333 ext. 244, fax him at 789-4077 or email him at gmcnall@fltimes.com.

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