Aug. 1, 2016
University of Notre Dame men’s basketball juniors Matt Farrell and Martinas Geben will take part in a trip to Italy with USA East Coast Basketball, an all-star team of collegiate student-athletes, from August 6th through the 13th. The team will compete in four games across Northern Italy, visiting Milan, Lake Como and Bellagio during the tour.
“Matt and Martinas will be two key contributors to our team and this opportunity to gain more on-court playing experience against international competition will be invaluable in their development,” Irish head coach Mike Brey said.
“They both saw limited minutes last season and this chance to increase their competitive court time and continue to learn how to play with each other will give them some great momentum entering another season of ACC basketball.”
The USA East Coast Basketball experience is becoming a tradition with the Irish men’s team, as Tom Knight (2013), Jack Cooley (2011) and Scott Martin (2010) also toured with the team. Coached by Guy Rancourt from Lycoming College, the team will play two contests in Altavilla and two in Vedano Olano against Italian Series A and Series B division players along with imported players from Serbia and Croatia.
“I’m very excited about the trip and the opportunity,” Matt Farrell said.
“It is another chance for me to take my game to the next level. I am blessed to have the game of basketball provide unbelievable opportunities like this trip to Italy.”
Farrell saw action in 28 game for the Irish last season, mostly in a reserve role until entering the starting lineup for the NCAA Championship. The Bridgewater, N.J., native averaged 26 minutes a game while helping Notre Dame advance to the Elite Eight for the second consecutive season with wins over Michigan, Stephen F. Austin and Wisconsin.
“I think this trip is an amazing opportunity to get more playing experience before the upcoming season,” Martinas Geben said.
“I’ll be able to get in a better rhythm with Matt as my point guard, as well as gaining confidence by playing against great international competition. It will be amazing to travel to Italy for a second time as a representative of Notre Dame and I am extremely grateful that my hard work has given me this opportunity to see the world and expand my game.”
Geben played in 16 games during the 2015-16 season, biding his time and working on his development behind third-team all-ACC selection Zach Auguste. He is pencilled in as a starting forward for the Irish to begin the 2016-17 season.
Farrell and Geben also traveled with the Irish on the team’s most recent foreign tour to Italy for a 10-day trip in August of 2014. The team visited Rome, Pesaro, Venice and Milan during that trip.
USA East Coast Basketball Notes: Along with Farrell and Geben, Ryan Rivers (Pace), Jevon Carter (West Virginia), Jevon Thomas (Seton Hall), Nykolas King (Lycoming), Sterling Brown (SMU), Nick Baer (Iowa), Myles Carter (Seton Hall) and Harry Froling (SMU) make up the East Coast roster ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢’Â¬Â¦ along with head coach Guy Rancourt, Fred Hill (Seton Hall), Michael Larkin (St. Michael’s) and Nick Friedman (Miami) make up the coaching staff ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢’Â¬Â¦ Rancourt founded the program in 2006 and this will be the 10th season USA East Coast Basketball will be making an overseas trip.