Sophomore point guard Juvaris Hayes of the Merrimack College men’s basketball team was selected to the Northeast-10 All-Conference First Team on Monday afternoon as the league announced its all-conference teams and major award winners.
Hayes moved up to the first team after receiving second-team accolades and the Rookie of the Year award last season. He is the first Warrior to land on the first team since Gelvis Solano ’16 in 2014-15. The Paterson, N.J. native leads the conference in assists per game (8.0), total assists (232), steals per game (3.9) and total steals (112). Additionally, he holds the national lead in total assists, total steals and steals per game.
The second-year floor general also leads Merrimack in scoring average (18.5) and rebounding average (6.1), setting a new career high with 536 points through 29 games. Hayes is one of two players in the conference to rank in the top ten in points, assists and steals per game, joining NE10 Player of the Year Tim Guers.
The Bevo Francis Top 50 Watchlist selection – awarded to the top small college basketball player nationwide – is nearing multiple milestones entering Wednesday’s NE10 Semifinal at Le Moyne. Hayes needs just three steals to set a new NE10 single-season record, which would put Hayes among the top-20 all-time in Division II history for steals in a single season. The point guard also is within 33 points of 1,000 for his career, which would make him the first Warrior to reach 1,000 in his first two seasons since Darin Mency ’11 accomplished the feat during the 2008-09 season.
In addition to Guers, Le Moyne’s Russell Sangster took home Defensive Player of the Year honors as did Dolphins head coach Patrick Beilein. Southern Connecticut’s Ulyen Coleman won NE10 Rookie of the Year.
Hayes and the rest of the Warriors will play in the program’s first NE10 Semifinal in eight years when the Navy and Gold travel to No. 19/22 and top-seeded Le Moyne College for a 7 p.m. tip-off on Wednesday night in Syracuse, N.Y.