NORTH ANDOVER, Mass. (AP) — Juvaris Hayes tied the NCAA career steals record with 448 and scored 22 points to help Merrimack beat Sacred Heart 64-57 on Friday night for the most wins by a team in its first year of Division I.
Hayes matched the all-division mark held by Tennyson Whitted, who played for Division II Ramapo College from 2000-03, with his sixth steal of the game. Hayes, who also had six rebounds and eight assists, reached 112 steals this season with an average of nearly four per game.
Merrimack (19-10, 13-3 Northeast Conference) is trying to become the first first-year Division I program to win a regular-season conference title. It is ineligible for the conference tournament while it transitions to Division I.
Aaron Clarke had 15 points, and Jare'l Spellman added 14 points and 10 rebounds for the Pioneers (16-12, 9-6).
Merrimack matches up against Mount St. Mary's on the road on Sunday. Sacred Heart faces Bryant on the road on Sunday.