Only one word can adequately sum up Billy Baron’s feats on the basketball court for Canisius in recent weeks: domination.
The former Hendricken star is torching the opposition to the tune of 23.6 points per game, helping the Golden Griffins to a 16-9 overall record thus far and placing him fifth among all Division I players in scoring average.
Baron’s lofty average has been bolstered by a trio of performances over the last month where the ex-Hawk went north of the 30-point mark against conference rivals.
The first instance saw Baron set a new career-high mark of 38 in Canisius’s 94-91 double-overtime win over Rider on Jan. 10, punctuated by a buzzer-beater from beyond the arc at the end of the second extra session.
On Jan. 22, Baron’s 31-point haul helped guide the Golden Griffins to an 87-74 triumph at home against cross-town rival Niagara and enabling Canisius to string together its first consecutive wins over the Purple Eagles since 2001.
The senior sharpshooter then equaled the Rider performance four days later against Marist, this time without the benefit of bonus basketball as Canisius needed only regulation to deal the Red Foxes a 78-65 setback.
Although he is the fulcrum of the Golden Griffins’ offense, Baron also has several other strings on his bow; he paces Canisius in assists (122), steals (40) and defensive rebounds (108) while his 89.8% clip from the charity stripe places him inside the top-20 nationally.
On three occasions this season Baron has been tabbed as the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference’s player of the week in addition to being honored by CollegeInsider.com as its national player of the week on the heels of his 30-plus performances against Niagara and Marist late last month.
Six games remain for Canisius before Baron and the Golden Griffins enter the conference tournament. The stretch run starts on Valentine’s Day with a nationally-televised tilt on the road against Niagara.
Baron has shone in his last two encounters with the Purple Eagles, having poured in 33 the last time Canisius made the short journey up the Niagara Thruway as a prelude to last month’s nationally-lauded exploits.
Former Titan Azeredo
honored at King
Warwick native and former Toll Gate standout Alex Azeredo is just starting the final season of his college baseball career at King University in Bristol, Tenn., but the senior ended up with a feather in his cap before the season even began.
Azeredo was named to the Conference Carolinas 2013 Fall Presidential Honor Roll, which recognizes student-athletes with a GPA of 3.2 or higher. The honor roll is awarded twice a year covering each of the fall and spring academic semesters and is based on meeting the criteria at the end of the previous semester. For the 2013 fall season, Limestone College led all league members with 295 student-athletes represented. They were followed closely by King University with 219 honorees.
The son of Ed and Joanne Azeredo, Alex has a 3.36 GPA as a psychology major. On the field, the 5-foot-10, 220-pound catcher hit .273 last season. He has seen action in two games thus far this year.
Barrette takes Little East award again
Pilgrim graduate and Rhode Island College freshman Destinee Barrette was selected as the Little East Conference indoor women’s field rookie of the week on Monday.
Competing at the David Hemery Valentine Invitational last Friday, hosted by Boston University, Barrette finished 15th in the weight throw and 33rd in the shot put.
Barrette has now earned rookie of the week honors three times this season.