Over the last three years, Billy Baron has been on a first-name basis with various moving companies as he traversed the eastern seaboard in search of a solid home.
Now, after brief stays at Virginia and URI, the youngest member of the Baron hoop clan has found stability in upstate New York, guiding Canisius College to their best start in nearly 40 years while earning plaudits for on-court excellence.
The third stop in the former Hendricken standout’s collegiate basketball career is proving to be the charm, as he currently leads the Golden Griffins in assists with 42, while his 17.7 points per game place him second on the squad.
With Canisius sporting a 6-1 record, Baron was recognized Monday as the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference’s player of the week for his role in victories against Fairfield and Marist last weekend, as the Griffs opened their conference slate in style.
The highlight of the weekend for Baron was his first career double-double in the Marist contest as he racked up 16 points while contributing a career-high 11 assists in a 94-82 win over the Red Foxes.
The biggest test of the season so far for Billy and his father Jim, who took the Canisius job after being relieved of his duties as Rhody’s head coach at the end of last season, is this Saturday as the Golden Griffins take on fourth-ranked Syracuse at the Carrier Dome. The tilt against the Orange is part of the Gotham Classic, which will see Canisus also play Temple, Alcorn State and Detroit Mercy, with the latter two contests being part of the consolation round for mid- and low-major teams.
Palumbo off to strong start
Ryan Palumbo is doing his best to ward off the sophomore jinx in his role as one of the starting guards for Roger Williams.
The Hendricken product leads the Hawks in rebounds (36) and steals (16), while his 22 assists are second on the team.
His 17-point and 10-assist performance in a 69-52 win over Suffolk on November 17 was instrumental in RWU’s conquest of the Courtyard by Marriott Tip-Off Championship, the first time that the Hawks won their own early-season tournament since 2009.
Roger Williams enters the holiday break with a 4-4 record, returning to .500 with a hard-fought 49-46 victory over the Coast Guard Academy on Tuesday night.
The Hawks return to the hardwood on New Year’s Day against Purchase College.