Letter to the editor: Congratulations to SVC team

Congratulations to SVC team

Last Friday night at Tufts University's Cousens Gym in the first round of the NCAA Division 3 basketball tournament was a true challenge for the SVC Mountaineers men's basketball team. The home team, from a premier D3 athletic conference, went into the game ranked #3 in the Northeast region and #20 nationally, and had every home — court advantage, from crowd sentiment to officiating.

Yet the Mountaineers showed what they're made of—tough, very well-coached, court-smart and superbly talented. At the end of a dramatic and exciting game, we came up short, 78-76, but we showed the D3 basketball world that SVC is the real deal, a team that can play with anyone in the country.

I want to congratulate the team and the coaching staff for a brilliant season. Dan Engelstad, the New England Collegiate Conference Coach of the Year, leads his team with inspiration, skill and class. His assistants—Sharif Hashim, David Bromirski, SVC basketball alumnus Dolapo Olugbile, and, informally, Shay Bromirski and others — have given their hearts to the team and the college, and I am truly grateful. Many players' family members have been faithful and enthusiastic fans, attending games at home and on the road, and supporting the team in many other ways. Our SVC students have made the Mountaineer Athletic Center the toughest home court in the NECC, and many traveled the winter roads to Tufts on Friday to cheer the team, a testimony to their support and appreciation.

Most importantly, I want to congratulate and thank the players. Seniors William Bromirski, Casey Hall, DeShawn Hamlet, Jeff James, and Antoine White have all contributed greatly to the team's success in the past few years. This year Casey and DeShawn received well-deserved all-NECC conference honors, but all the seniors have been absolutely key to SVC's success. We will sorely miss all of them, but I look forward to welcoming back our the returning players next year—it's exciting to know that we have a core of great talent, and that we will again be competitive for the NECC championship.

Finally, to all the members of the Bennington community who have been so supportive of both the men's and the women's basketball teams this year, you have my heartfelt gratitude. We love seeing you at the MAC, and I know I speak for both teams when I say how meaningful it is that you join us for the games. Your enthusiasm lifts our teams and our college, and on behalf of the entire SVC community, I thank you.


— David Evans, SVC president Bennington


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