ALBANY, N.Y. -- (AP/WTEN) - UAlbany has two America East Champions after the women's team defeated Hartford Saturday night, just hours after the men's team beat Vermont.
Mike Black scored 14 points and Albany came back from an early deficit to beat Vermont 53-49 in the America East championship game on Saturday and earn its third trip to the NCAA tournament.
Luke Devlin added 12 points on 6 for 6 shooting as the Great Danes (24-10) ended an 8-game losing streak to the Catamounts (21-11). Jacob Iati hit a pair of 3-point shots in the final three minutes to seal the win.
Trey Blue and Clancy Rugg each had 10 points to lead Vermont, which was denied its sixth trip to the NCAAs in the past 11 years.
"It is with great pride and enthusiasm that I congratulate the University at Albany Men's Basketball Team on their America East championship victory. New Yorkers can now rally behind the Great Danes as they take their third conference title to the NCAA Tournament. This entry to March Madness could not have been possible without the leadership of President Robert Jones, Athletics Director Lee McElroy, Coach Will Brown, and each of the outstanding student-athletes who worked tirelessly to bring SUNY and New York State to the dance!" said SUNY Chancellor Nancy L. Zimpher.
During the regular season, Albany was beaten 70-45 and 50-43 by Vermont in its two lowest-scoring games of the year. But Albany came through on the road to beat the Catamounts for the third time in as many tries in the league title game.
UAlbany, seeded 15th, will take on Duke, seeded 2nd, on Friday at 12:15 p.m. in Philadelphia.
Tournament most valuable player Megan Craig had 16 points and seven rebounds, Shereesha Richards and Lindsey Lowrie added 12 points apiece, and top-seeded Albany (N.Y.) rallied past Hartford 61-52 Saturday night to win its second straight America East Conference tournament.
The defending champion Great Danes (27-3), regular-season champions for the first time in program history, ended the regular season as the lone undefeated team in league play at 16-0. They've won 28 straight games against America East opponents, including the postseason.
Albany swept second-seeded Hartford (21-11) in the season series, posting a 55-48 overtime win in Albany before recording a 66-55 road win. The Great Danes beat New Hampshire 71-57 in the conference semifinals for their 18th straight win and were beating their conference opponents by an average of nearly 24 points.
Nikkia Smith's 18 points led the Hawks, who were seeking their sixth title and came up just short.
Both teams will find out where they will play and who they will play in the tournament Sunday at 6 p.m.
The NCAA tournament begins Tuesday night.
The Associated Press contributed to this article.
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