Last season, the LIU Brooklyn men’s basketball entered the season as three-time defending NEC champions. Optimism was high entering the season but as we all know, a multitude of injuries helped rob the Blackbirds any real opportunity to continue their winning ways and finished the season 9-20 and out of the NEC tournament for the first time in eight years.
Although it was a rough season for the LIU Brooklyn men’s basketball in 2013-14, there were still several memorable moments that caused Blackbirds fans to cheer and feel good about their team. Here are our top five best moments from this past season:
5. Iverson Fleming’s 22 points saves LIU vs NJIT
In what turned to be his biggest game of the season, freshman guard Iverson Fleming put on a tremendous second-half display to help stave off a furious NJIT comeback to help LIU get their first road win of the season in a high scoring 96-93 win in Newark.
The outburst from the North Brunswick, NJ native come out of nowhere since he had scored just six total points prior to this game. He scored 20 of his 22 points in the second half and did it all varieties of ways from driving to the hoop, shooting the three and hitting clutch free throws at the end to ice the game. It was easily his breakout performance of the season and the best performance by an LIU freshman in 2013-14.
4. LIU wins Battle of Brooklyn
In what was considered somewhat of an upset considering where both teams were in the standing at the time of this game, LIU beat St. Francis Brooklyn in the annual Battle of Brooklyn held for the first time at the Barclays Center. St. Francis Brooklyn had played LIU to begin the NEC season and the Terriers easily handled LIU 78-64 at the Pope Center.
When they meet again in February, LIU was in midst of a four-game losing streak while St. Francis Brooklyn was 3-1 in their previous four games coming in. Thanks to 20 points from junior forward Landon Atterberry and a season-high tying 14 assists from Jason Brickman, LIU was able to take their fourth straight Battle of Brooklyn victory 69-68.
3. E.J. Reed dunk versus Indiana
The best single highlight play of the season came in LIU’s second game of the season. LIU nearly pulled off a monumental upset of the then-23rd ranked Indiana Hoosiers at Assembly Hall. The Blackbirds were in a close one with Indiana all game long before a hot Will Sheehey help pull the game away for Indiana late.
But one LIU play that stands out was the one handed dunk by now former Blackbird E.J. Reed who took a pass at the top of the key, drove to the basket through three defenders and slammed it down hard over one of them.
2. Gerrell Martin’s buzzer-beaters vs Norfolk State and Lamar
Early in the season, LIU had a pair of buzzer-beaters provided by the Jason Brickman to Gerrell Martin connection. Both buzzer-beaters coming in back-to-back home games.
The first came in LIU’s first home game at the Steinberg Wellness Center against Norfolk State on a layup by Martin off the feed from Brickman. The second came seventeen days later in their next home game against Lamar on a three pointer by Martin off another feed from Brickman.
1. Jason Brickman brakes NEC assist record and gets his 1000th career assist
The number one moment goes to Jason Brickman, LIU’s most valuable player in 2013-14. He set a new standard for career assists in the NEC when he broke the 26-year old record of 804 on December 12th against NJIT. His 805th assist came on a pass to Troy Joseph in the second half.
In LIU’s final game of the season with Brickman going into the game needing just three assists to become the fourth player in college basketball history to ever reach 1000 assists, Brickman got to the magical mark in the first half against Bryant on a pass to Gerrell Martin for an open three-pointer. Brickman ended his LIU career with 1009 assists.