Monday, November 30, 2015

Week 13: Grambling State Remains On Top in HSRN FCS Football Poll

HARTLEY, Delaware – Grambling State University's Bayou Classic win over Southern University solidified the Tigers' first place position in the final regular season HSRN FCS Football Poll.  GSU had moved into the top spot following North Carolina A&T's loss to North Carolina Central a week ago.  The Tigers had been sitting in the #2 spot for several weeks prior to moving up.
GSU, SWAC Western Division Champion, now heads to Houston to meet Eastern Division titleist Alcorn State, Saturday.  The winner will face N.C. A&T in the Celebration Bowl, December 19 in Atlanta.
Division I/FCS
Rankings did not change from the previous week.  The final poll will be released following the Celebration Bowl.
Division II/NAIA
Voting for this week's poll has been suspended until the end of the playoffs.
About HSRN:
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Week 13 – Rankings

Division I FCS

School (First Place Votes)
Last Week
Grambling State (8)
North Carolina A&T (1)
Alcorn State
Prairie View A&M
North Carolina Central
South Carolina State
Alabama State

Others receiving votes

Tennessee State (3)


TSU announces changes with Football Program

HOUSTON, Texas -- Texas Southern Tigers head football coach Darrell Asberry has informed TSU that he is stepping down from his post with the football program.

"I appreciate Texas Southern and (TSU Vice President for Intercollegiate Athletics) Dr. Charles McClelland for all that they've done for me and my family and the support they've given me," said Asberry.

Before joining Texas Southern, Asberry was the head coach at Shaw University for six years.

Asberry, who took over the Tigers program in 2012 helped guide the program through several years of NCAA sanctions and helped boost the programs standing as it relates to APR.

In 2013 the Football Championship Subdivision Athletics Directors Association (FCS ADA) announced that the Texas Southern football program would be named the recipient of the Academic Progress Rate (APR) Most Improved Award for the Southwestern Athletic Conference.

The APR Most Improved Award recognized one institution at each of the 14 FCS conferences that had the highest APR score improvement from the previous year.

"Over the course of the past four years, Coach Asberry has been a
true professional, a great administrator and someone I will always call a friend," said Dr. McClelland. "We wish him well in all of his future endeavors."

In four seasons with the Tigers Asberry had an overall record of 12-31 including a 9-27 mark in league play.

A national search to find his replacement will begin immediately.


Sunday, November 29, 2015

UAPB Golden Lions Topples Southeastern Louisiana, 62-60

WEST POINT, New York -- The University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff men's basketball team held a late comeback and slugged it out, toe-toe-, with Southeastern Louisiana Lions for 40 minutes in a 62-60 win at the Barclay's Center Classic. The Golden Lions took controlled the game mid-way through the first half and never looked back after being down 6-0 in the first three minutes of the game.

After playing one of the toughest schedule in the nation and coming off road losses to Michigan St. who has a good shot in playing in the Final Four and Nebraska and Cincinnati who projected of making the big dance, the Golden Lions stood strong on what Head Coach George Ivory preach and that's "defense". UAPB (2-5) forced SLU to 14 turnovers and taking advantage of scoring 20 of the team 30 points in the first half for a 30-28 lead.

Junior guard Ghiavonni Robinson came out the locker room with a hot hand, connecting on a three pointer from the left side of the arch with less than three minutes off the clock to extend UAPB lead 37-31 with 17:26 in the game.

Southeastern Louisiana wouldn't go down without a fight after being down by double digits (52-42) with 6:38 in regulation. The Lions would go on a scoring run, but All Tournament team senior forward JoVaughn Love stepped up big for UAPB in the second half and connected on two late jump shots and snatched a key rebound to cool Southeastern Louisiana (1-6) comeback rally.

The Golden Lions (2-5) scored a combined 27 points off turnovers, 34 points in the paint, 34 bench points and 13 fast break points.

UAPB shot 50.9 percent (27-of-53) from the floor, including 25 percent (4-of-16) from behind the arch. The Golden Lions were 4-of-10 (40 percent) from the charity stripes.

Love led the team with 15 points. DeShon Bayless and Charles Jackson each chipped in eight points for UAPB, followed by Ghiavonni Robinson with seven points and three assist T.J. Handley with six points. Love and Trent Whiting each hauled in five rebounds to lead the team.

Love also was named to the All Tournament team in this weekend Barclay's tournament.

All-Tournament Team:
Tanner Plomb, Army West Point (MVP)
Kyle Wilson, Army West Point
Harold McBride, Gardner–Webb
JoVaughn Love, Arkansas – Pine Bluff
Keith Charleston, Southeastern Louisiana

UAPB will return home for a short break before heading out to face Hawaii December 2nd in Honolulu.


2015 Bayou Classic Attendance Numbers for the Classic

NEW ORLEANS, Louisiana -- On Saturday (11.28), Grambling State blew out their nemesis Southern by a score of 34-23. However, a different set of numbers marked a victory for tourism in New Orleans. The attendance numbers were the highest logged by the annual matchup since the Storm.

62,907 fans flocked to da Dome to watch the rivals square off according to organizers at SWAC. That figure shattered the previous post-Katrina record of 59,874 in 2008.

The record low of 40,715 in 2011 is now a distant memory. In the four years since, attendance increased annually.

Numbers for the past ten years follow.
2015 attendance: 62,907
2014 attendance: 57,852
2013 attendance: 47,385
2012 attendance: 45,980
2011 attendance: 40,715


Florida A&M edges Alcorn State in 73-71 victory

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas -- Malcolm Bernard made a go-ahead basket just before the final buzzer to help Florida A&M beat Alcorn State 73-71 in the Corpus Christi Coastal Classic on Saturday.

Bernard had a triple-double with 14 points, 12 assists, 11 rebounds and four steals. Justin Ravenal made four 3-pointers and scored 16 points off the bench in 18 minutes of play.

Florida A&M (3-4) led 38-32 at halftime but Alcorn State took a 10-point lead in the second half.

The Rattlers made eight 3-pointers on 16 attempts while the Braves were 3 for 19 from distance.


Alcorn State holds on to beat Jackson State 14-10


JACKSON, Mississippi --­ The Alcorn State University Braves (8-3, 7-2 Southwestern Athletic Conference) held on to beat the tenacious Jackson State University Tigers (3-8, 3-6) 14-10 in front of 21,000 fans at Mississippi Veteran Memorial Stadium, in Jackson, Mississippi.

The Tigers pounced first when Teddrick Terrell took a LENORRIS FOOTMAN fumble 27 yards to the end zone for the first score of the game.

The Tigers' excitement did not last long. On the ensuing kickoff, MARQUIS WARFORD took the kickoff 94 yards for a touchdown, which silenced the home crowd and tied the game at 7.

The number one defense in the SWAC held Jackson to 221 yards of total offence and no offensive touchdowns.

The Tigers' defense was able to hold Alcorn to 287 total offensive yards. The Braves uncharacteristically gave up three sacks, which is a season high.

The Tigers added a field goal in the second quarter to extend the lead 10­-7 with nine minutes left in the second half. The Braves missed an opportunity to tie the game after a missed field goal with 16 seconds left in the half. The Braves missed three field goals (26, 24, and 37 yards).

In the second half, the Braves went to their bread butter, the run game. After a 15-yard swing pass to Warford, the Braves attacked with four consecutive run plays.

The Tigers' ensuing drive ended with an interception by ERIC FOSTER in their backfield.

The Braves took advantage of great field position and drove 56 yard in seven plays, capped off on a one yard Aaron Baker touchdown, to take the final lead 14-­10.

On Jackson State's final possession, they drove from their 20-yard line to Alcorn 42- yard line with 2:26 on the game clock. Jordan Williams was not able to connect on their final four plays, turning the ball over on downs.

Ragsdale rushed for 101 yards to lead all rushers. Footman ran for 76 yards and threw for 89, his lowest output since taking over for an injured John Gibbs.

The Braves clinched a title berth last week and will face the Grambling State University Tigers December 5th in Houston, Texas at the NRG Stadium for a chance to repeat as SWAC champions and represent the conference in the Celebration Bowl versus Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference representative North Carolina A&T in Atlanta, Georgia.




The Bayou Classic Attendance was 62,507; Quick-strike offense puts Grambling ahead, then in control of the Bayou Classic against Southern

NEW ORLEANS, Louisiana -- Despite what many traditional thinkers may say, Grambling coach Broderick Fobbs has never cared much about how long his team possesses the ball.

He’s more concerned with how fast they can score.

Grambling’s quick-strike approach on offense — led by coordinator Eric Dooley, a longtime Southern assistant coach was a major reason the Tigers overcame a 17-point deficit and rallied for a 34-23 win over the Jaguars in Saturday’s 42nd Bayou Classic.

“With our offense, we’re always in the game,” Fobbs said. “We did a really good job of mixing in the run with the pass, but we always look to score quickly when we can.”


After trailing 20-17 at halftime, Grambling opened the second half with a 13-play drive that ended with a 1-yard touchdown run by Grambling quarterback Johnathan Williams, but only took four-plus minutes off the clock.

Both teams struggled to get anything going the rest of the third quarter, but Grambling completed a four-play drive to open the fourth quarter, heaving a 54-yard bomb to Chad Williams to extend the team’s lead to 31-20.

Five of the Tigers’ six scoring drives took less than 4:10 off of the clock.


Grambling beats Southern, 34-23, to stay unbeaten in SWAC

NEW ORLEANS, Louisiana  -- Johnathan Williams threw three touchdowns and ran for a fourth as Grambling State scored 28-consecutive points in a 34-23 comeback victory over Southern University in the Bayou Classic on Saturday.

“Our coaches did a great job of calling plays that put our athletes in space with chances to make plays,” said Williams. “The 28 points, it was just a matter of time before we got rolling. Our defense played well, and everything fell into place for us.”

The Tigers (9-2, 9-0 Southwestern Athletic Conference) ended three-straight wins by Southern (6-5, 6-3) in the game between the Louisiana rivals. Grambling advances to next week’s SWAC championship game against Alcorn State in Houston for the first time since 2011.



Williams, who leads the SWAC in total offense, completed 20-of-34 passes for 272 yards and rushed for 78 yards on nine carries. He threw scoring passes to KaJandre Domino and Verlan Hunter in the second quarter. He rushed for a touchdown in the third and completed a 54-yard scoring pass eight seconds into the fourth quarter that all but sealed the outcome.

“Southern made a couple of mistakes early that helped us get back in the ball game,” Grambling State coach Broderick Fobbs said. “I thought we did a really good job of making them turn the ball over, putting the ball in the end zone and taking advantage of the whole situation from the second quarter on.”


Ted Lewis: Its football team back on top after Bayou Classic win, ‘Grambling will never die’


NEW ORLEANS -- Grambling football, former Tigers quarterback and coach Doug Williams likes to say, has special meaning and standing in the sport.

But in Williams’ second go-round, that something unfortunately meant chaos in the program in 2013, the embarrassment of having to forfeit a game after a player boycott and going through three coaches that season, which concluded with a single victory for the second straight year.

Two years later, though, Grambling is back.

Saturday’s come-from-behind 34-23 victory against archrival Southern in the 42nd Bayou Classic wrapped up an undefeated SWAC Western Conference championship for the Tigers.

Now it’s on to next Saturday’s conference championship game against Alcorn State and, with a victory, a trip to Atlanta to face MEAC champion North Carolina A&T in the inaugural Celebration Bowl.

But this one — in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome against the team that Tigers fans and players want to beat above all others — is the one that they’re likely to remember most about this season.

“This is a childhood dream,” said senior cornerback Nicholas Peoples, whose end-zone second-quarter interception and return to the Grambling 46-yard line was the biggest of several momentum-turning plays that got the Tigers out of a 20-3 deficit. “It’s every Louisiana kid’s dream to make it to the Superdome and win the state championship. That’s what this feels like today.”



Notebook: Grambling overcomes longest, largest SWAC deficit to finish undefeated in league play

NEW ORLEANS, Louisiana -- Southern put Grambling in an unfamiliar position early in the Bayou Classic.

But down the stretch it was in a familiar position as it competed an undefeated Southwestern Athletic Conference regular season with a 34-23 victory Saturday in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome.

The Tigers had trailed in just two of their previous eight SWAC games — against Alabama State and Alcorn State — and for a total of just 21 minutes and nine seconds.

The Jaguars took a 6-0 lead with 13:13 left in the first quarter and maintained a lead for 32:28.

 The attendance was 62,507.


Southern also built the biggest lead against Grambling in SWAC play when it went ahead 20-3 with 12:08 left in the second quarter. The Tigers’ biggest deficit in SWAC play had been 14 points against Alcorn State.

But Grambling took its first lead when Johnathan Williams ran 1 yard for a touchdown that gave it a 24-20 edge with 10:45 left in the third quarter. The Tigers led the rest of the way.


After a few hiccups, Grambling’s defense stands strong and stops Southern in the Bayou Classic


NEW ORLEANS, Louisiana -- It was fitting that Grambling defensive end Michael Jolivet sacked Austin Howard to finish off Southern’s last-gasp drive Saturday in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome.

The play capped a game of comebacks for Grambling and sealed a 34-23 win at the 42nd Bayou Classic.

For a maligned defense that fell into a 20-3 hole early in the second quarter, the results provided proof that Grambling believed in itself when things looked bleak.

Photos: The sights, celebrations and big plays of another thrilling Bayou Classic

“Its outstanding to finally get some recognition for what we do on our side of the ball,” Jolivet said. “We work extremely hard all during the week, and it’s great for it to finally pay off on a big stage.”

Grambling was pushed around in the first half as two touchdown passes from Howard helped Southern take a 20-3 lead with 12:08 left before the break. But the Jaguars managed just three points the rest of the way.

Grambling’s offense began to find a groove as the Tigers pulled within 20-10 on Johnathan Williams’ 3-yard touchdown pass. Seemingly unfazed, Southern took the kickoff, and quickly moved to the GSU 41 where Nicholas Peoples made a momentum changing interception.



'Those guys were hungry': Huge second half boosts Grambling to 34-23 victory over Southern in the Bayou Classic

NEW ORLEANS -- Grambling established itself as the best team in the Southwestern Athletic Conference regular season as it won its first eight games.

But even with a West Division championship in hand, the Tigers had much more to accomplish against Southern in the Bayou Classic on Saturday in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome.

Despite a slow start, they did just that. Grambling put the final touches on a perfect SWAC regular season, overcoming a 17-point second-quarter deficit to beat the Jaguars 34-23.


The Tigers, 9-2 overall and ranked No. 1 among historically black colleges and universities, ended a three-game losing streak against Southern. They will face defending conference champion Alcorn State in the SWAC championship game next Saturday in Houston.

“This has always been a championship game for me,” said Grambling second-year coach Broderick Fobbs, who participated in four Classics as a player. “I never looked at it as an opportunity to rest my guys so we can be ready for next week. That’s crazy.”

The Jaguars, who won the West the previous two years, finished 6-5 and 6-3 after losing for the first time in 12 November games.


Saturday, November 28, 2015

Tuskegee Football Punches Ticket to NCAA D2 Quarterfinals

FLORENCE, Alabama  --  With their backs against the wall and the clock winding down, the Tuskegee University Golden Tigers punched their ticket to the quarterfinals of the NCAA Division II playoffs for the first time in school history, with a thrilling 35-31 victory over second-seeded North Alabama at Braly Municipal Stadium on Saturday afternoon.

Following a North Alabama field goal that put the Lions ahead 31-28, Tuskegee took over with 3:54 to play in the game. Following three plays that resulted in a fourth down, Tuskegee (10-2) called a timeout and pitched the ball to Dennis Norfleet who picked up six yards and a first down.

The Golden Tigers faced another big play later in the drive on another third down. That is when Kevin Lacey dropped back and dropped a pass into the waiting arms of Desmond Reece, who found his way down to the North Alabama two-yard line with just 25 seconds remaining.

Dennis Norfleet
"That was probably the most confident pass I threw all day," Lacey said. "Coach (Slater) made the call and we just had to execute. I felt a little bit of the butterflies through the game, but knew I had to execute to give us a chance."

Tuskegee was forced to call a timeout on the play, which set the stage for Norfleet to send the Golden Tigers into celebration mode for the second consecutive week. The senior took the pitch from Lacey, went around the left end and dove into the end zone with just 19 seconds remaining to give Tuskegee a four-point lead.

"It was a play we had been running all day," Norfleet said. "They overloaded to the right side, and (Kevin) Lacey made a change at the line. I told our fullback Jerome (Lewis) that if he made the block I was going to jump over top of him. He did his job and I had to do mine."

North Alabama had one final chance as they completed a pass, but the lateral was knocked down by Daryl George and recovered by the Golden Tigers to send Tuskegee into their first quarterfinal game in school history.

"I am just tickled to be back up here," Tuskegee University head coach Slater said. "It is great to be back in this area. I am stunned, and it is unbelievable the way the game ended. My hats off to our players, they played hard and played with their heart. I am just happy for them."

The Golden Tigers defense came into the game as one of the best in the nation and held North Alabama – with Harlon Hill nominee Luke Wingo – to just 288 yards of total offense.

Junior defensive end Julian Morgan led the Golden Tigers with 12 tackles, including three tackles for loss and a pair of sacks. Meanwhile, Jewell Ratliff finished with nine tackles and the Golden Tigers finished with five sacks and eight tackles for loss in the win.

"We have just been preparing all week to get ready," Morgan said. "The coaches made sure we were ready, and we just came out and fought hard – the hardest we have all year. We are playing for each other, we all know what the goal is now and want to work hard to achieve that."

Offensively, Tuskegee piled up 434 total yards – including 258 rushing yards. Norfleet led all rushers with 136 yards on 21 carries with a pair of touchdowns. Devozea Gaines, thrust into a backup role at running back, finished with 73 yards on just four carries.

Lacey finished with 51 yards rushing and was 10-for-20 for 176 yards, including a 28-yard touchdown to Marquel Gardner.

The game featured big play after big play the entire game, with the teams trading the lead seven times.

"We know how it feels to be down," Norfleet said. "We have had games this year where it has happened, and we have found ourselves down. We don't want to have that feeling again, not this late in the year because we know it is one and done.

"Deep in our hearts and souls, we know we are playing for us and for Tuskegee University. If we dig deep and play, good things will happen."

The Golden Tigers set a new school record in the victory – early in the contest – as Terence Webb intercepted a North Alabama pass on their first drive. The interception was the 23rd overall for the Golden Tigers, breaking the mark of 22 that was set in 1974 and matched in 1990 (and again in 2012).

With their victory, Tuskegee advances to face the top-seeded Wolves of the University of West Georgia in the quarterfinals next Saturday in Carrollton (Ga.). The game is a rematch of the first round game from last season in which West Georgia won by three at Tuskegee.

Game time and ticket information will be announced on Monday.

For more information on Tuskegee University athletics, follow us on Twitter @MyTUAthletics and like us on Facebook.



Chico is the man: AAMU Senior has his day in win over Texas Southern

NORMAL, Alabama -- It was Senior Day for the Bulldogs and the  upperclassmen all did their part in helping lead Alabama A&M to a resounding 38-7 season-ending win over Texas Southern.

Brandon Eldemire rushed for 102 yards, had a kickoff return for 24 yards and scored a touchdown; Anthony Lanier had 6 tackles and 2 1/2 sacks; Corey Johnson had assists on two tackles, a sack and a tackle for loss and David Dagrin had a key tackle as the Bulldogs dominated on both sides of the ball.

The Bulldogs rushed for 238 yards and had 259 yards passing while giving up just 156 yards rushing and 146 yards through the air.

Some underclassmen also put in their contributions.

De'Angelo Ballard was 15-of-22 for 251 yards with two touchdowns and no interceptions. He also had 69 yards rushing and a touchdown for 320 yards.

Octayvious Miles had just one kickoff return, but it was for 11 yards, giving him 1,002 for the season.

Damion May had 8 yards passing but, used as a slot receiver, he also had 17 yards rushing on five carries.

DeVon Johnson had 93 all-purpose yards.

Devonte Simon had an interception return for 34 yards and a fumble return for 84 yards.

Nick Carden punted just once for the first time this season and it was for 38 yards.

The Bulldogs, finishing 3-6 in the SWAC and 3-8 overall, took the opening kickoff and drove 77 yards in 7 plays, capped by Ballard's 37-yard touchdown pass to Ladarion Heath.

Early in the second quarter, Devonte Simon intercepted a pass at the  A&M 15 and returned it to the Bulldogs 49. Seven plays later, Harvey Harris scored on a 29-yard run and a Cesar Ramon-Diaz point-after made it 14-0 with 11:24 left in the half.

After a Texas Southern touchdown, the Bulldogs made it 17-7 on Ramon-Diaz's 20-yard field goal with 40 seconds to go.

After a Ballard 3-yard touchdown run in the third quarter ran the score to 24-7 the defense took over with a big play at the one-minute mark of the quarter.

Texas Southern had a first and goal at the A&M 2-yard-line when Brad Woodard fumbled and Simon returned it 84 yards to the Tigers 12 yard-line. On second down, Ballard connected with Jonathan Dorsey for a 12-yard TD pass and a 31-7 lead.

The Bulldogs wrapped up the scoring when Eldemire scored on a two-yard run late in the fourth quarter.


Thomas Late Field Goal Gives ASU Come-from-Behind Win over Chicago State; Waters Named to All Tournament Team

NICEVILLE, Floridia  – Torloft Thomas hit a running one-hander under the basket with 1.2 seconds left to give Alabama State a come-from-behind 66-64 win over Chicago State. The basket culminated a 16-point comeback for the Hornets in recording their second win of the season.

"We were tasking bad shots that put us in the hole early on, but we had some good shots and they weren't falling for us," Head Coach Lewis Jackson said. "Once we got down we started to hurry and rushing ourselves and put ourselves deeper in the hole."

"Once we settled down we started to move the ball. We told them the shots would start to fall and we moved the ball and shared it with each other and in the second half the shots started to fall for us. I was glad to see the guys stick to the game plan and we started to play good defense as well."

After suffering through another poor shooting half, the Hornets (2-3) picked it up in the second half and shot 50 percent from the field and added four three point field goals. ASU did not get to the free throw line a lot in the half, but did manage to hit seven of its eight free throws.

The Hornets defense also picked it up in the second half holding the Cougars (3-3) to only 23 points and 32 percent shooting. The Hornets full court press seemed to take a lot out of CSU to help in the Hornets comeback.

"I thought our press did a lot to help us get back in the game," Jackson said. "We thought our five could start jamming their guards and we were able to get our hands on a lot of passes and it paid off. We made them do some things they did not want to do."

Jamel Waters scored a game-high 19 points to lead ASU's offense. He added three rebounds, three assists and a game-high five steals in being named to the All-Tournament Team.

Thomas finished the game with 15 points and a game-high five assists. Bobby Brown and Corvon Butler led the Hornets off the bench with 13 and 12 points respectively. Those two were also ASU's leading rebounders as Brown had seven and Butler added six.

ASU's press defense caused havoc for the Cougars all game as they forced 26 turnovers with led to 23 points.

Another cold shooting first half put the Hornets behind the eight ball trailing 41-29 at halftime. ASU only shot 22 percent from the field while CSU was able to knock down 50 percent of their shots and that includes hitting five of their 10 three point shots.

CSU out rebounded ASU 27-21 which led to nine second chance points and ASU only hit eight of its 13 free throw attempts in the first 20 minutes.

"We didn't shoot the ball very well, but we played hard and when you play hard you give yourself a chance to win a ball game and our guys did that this afternoon."

Hornets will not have a lot of time to rest as they will leave Monday for Evansville, Ind., where they are scheduled to face the Purple Aces of Evansville Dec. 1 at 7 p.m.



UMES Coach Batchelor Gets 200th Win Versus Cheyney

PRINCESS ANNE, Maryland -- In his third attempt, University of Maryland Eastern Shore (UMES) Women's Basketball head coach Fred Batchelor and the Lady Hawks broke through and picked up their leaders' 200th collegiate victory as they defeated the Cheyney Wolves, 76-46, inside the William P. Hytche Athletic Center.

With the win, UMES moved to 2-3 overall while Cheyney dropped to 0-4 on the season.

After a close first half, the Lady Hawks' second half surge would be the difference as they outscored the Wolves, 47-21. In the third and fourth quarters, Maryland Eastern Shore shot 60-percent (18-of-30) from the field and 67-percent (10-of-15) from beyond the arc.

Guard Moengaroa Subritzky (Auckland, New Zealand) led the charge as she finished with a team-high 14 points on 4-of-7 shooting from downtown. Senior center Taryana Kelly (North Brunswick, N.J.) added 10 points and a game-high 8 boards in the victory.

Cheyney's Aeries DeJesus made a fast-break layup and trimmed UMES' margin down to four points in the opening minutes of the second half, 31-27. Maryland Eastern Shore responded as they went on a 16-5 run, capped by a Subritzky three-pointer, 47-32. UMES scored 11 points off of Wolves' turnovers and took a 14-point advantage into the fourth, 49-35.

Maryland Eastern Shore's momentum continued as back-to-back long balls from Subritzky and Ciani Byrom (Winston-Salem, N.C.) gave the Lady Hawks a 20-point lead with 7:36 left in the game, 57-37. Cheyney battled back, but UMES could not miss as they went on another 16-5 run to take their largest lead of the game, 73-42, with less than three minutes to play. In the waning moments, Briana Sye (Harrisburg, Pa.) made a freebie and gave the Lady Hawks a 30-point victory, 76-46.

Other notable Hawk performances included senior guard TeAmber Burke (Washington, N.C.) recording 13 points on 4-of-4 shooting from the charity stripe. Freshman guard Keyera Eaton (Winston-Salem, N.C.) tallied a career-high 10 points off the bench on 50-percent (4-of-8) shooting from the floor in the victory.

UMES opened the contest on a 6-0 spurt, capped off by Burke's steal and layup. After one quarter of play, the Lady Hawks led, 15-9. Midway through the second quarter, DeJesus made a layup and put the Wolves within striking distance, 19-16. Maryland Eastern Shore answered with a 7-0 run, capped off by Kelly's layup, 26-16. Cheyney refused to give up as they closed out the first half on an 8-3 run to make the intermission score, 29-25.

For Cheyney, DeJesus had a game-high 15 points on 3-of-5 shooting from downtown while TaKayla chipped in 10 points in a losing effort.

After the Thanksgiving holidays (Dec. 2), Maryland Eastern Shore concludes its two-game home stand against Mount St. Mary's. Tipoff is set for 6 p.m.

For complete recaps, results and news of Hawk athletics, please visit


UMES Hawks Grab First Win and Coach Collins 200th Win in 70-57 Defeat of Saint Francis (Pa.)

PRINCESS ANNE, Maryland -- It may have taken four prior attempts but the Hawks of the University of Maryland Eastern Shore (UMES) got their first win of the 2015-16 campaign and with it gave their coach, Bobby Collins, his 200th career win. UMES avenged last season's road loss to Saint Francis (PA) with a 70-57 senior led effort.

"We were really focused," said head coach Bobby Collins. "It took a bad loss earlier this week to get their attention, but if we play the way we are capable of we can get their attention and they can understand that the things we do work when our team listens. It was important to get this win under our belt."

The Hawks may have a young team, but senior leadership stepped up tonight as pre-season All-MEAC selections Dominique Elliott (Savannah, Ga.) and Devin Martin (Baltimore, Md.) combined for more than half of the teams points, netting 39 in all, 21 from Elliott and 18 from Martin. It wasn't just in the scoring column however, as Martin made sharp passes and defensive stops to add four assists and four rebounds to his stat line while Elliott added a team high eight caroms to go with two assists. Elliott's 21 was a game high and included a perfect two-from-two from deep to extend the defense around the Hawks' senior center.

UMES went big in the starting lineup, inserting 6-8 junior Josh'ua Warren (Marietta, Ga.) to pair up with Elliott and junior Bakari Copeland (Decatur, Ga.). Warren and Copeland both added eight points each and 11 combined boards. The all Georgia front line held the Red Flash to just under 38% shooting for the game and outscored Saint Francis (PA) 42-24 in the paint.

"I am pleased with this great win," added Collins. "We knew [Warren] was capable, he had been having a great week. He makes [Elliott] play within himself and play comfortably. So when Josh is on, coaches have to decide, `who are you going to stop', defenses have to pick their poison."

That up close and personal shooting for UMES was to the tune of 54.5%. The Hawks, who normally rely on three-point shooting, didn't need it tonight with the inside presence, and connected on just four threes, including the two from Elliott. While the inside scoring ease was a factor, the Hawks only made six trips to the free throw line, but connected on all six, for a perfect mark.

"We didn't need a lot of threes tonight," said Collins. "We shot a high percentage because they gave us those looks inside and we didn't get fouled a lot so we didn't take a lot of free throws. We know our post can score with intensity, early and often and now we just need to do it every night."

On the other side, the Red Flash couldn't get going as leading scorer Ben Millaud-Meunier was 0-7 from the field, making just three free throws. Second leading scorer and former Wicomico High School player Greg Brown didn't suit up. So the Red Flash turned to Isaiah Blackmon, younger brother to UMES' Mark Blackmon. Isaiah led Saint Francis in scoring with 17 while forward Ronnie Drinnon had 15 points and a game-high 13 rebounds.

The Hawks led the game for more than 31 of the 40 minutes, up by as many as 15. There were nine lead changes, but just one tie, which occurred less than a minute into the game after Elliott got a lay-in off a Martin pass. He was fouled and then converted the free throw for the Hawks' first lead. Blackmon, who scored the opening basket, gave the Red Flash the lead right back and they would maintain it for the next six minutes. Martin netted a leaning jumper at the 13:15 mark to give UMES a 14-13 lead. From there they would go up by as many as seven before the Red Flash cut it one at the break.

The Hawks pushed the second half lead to ten just three minutes in. They went back and forth with Saint Francis (PA) but extended it back to ten, 57-47 with 8:30 left to play. UMES took their largest, lead, 15 with just over four minutes to play on a Martin lay-in before The Red Flash's Ifeanyi Umezurike got a jumper in the paint. UMES answered with a dunk from Elliott to push it back to 15. Saint Francis made the final margin 13 on a Georgios Angelou jumper, 70-57.

The Hawks will now face one of their tougher opponents in Georgetown on Tuesday at 7 p.m. in The Verizon Center, televised live on Fox Sports 1. That game is the first of seven straight road contests for the Hawks, making it that just two of their first 12 contests are home in the Hytche Center.




Bayou Classic 2015 Battle of the Bands

Nuggets top No. 18 Langston, finish 2-0 at XU Classic

NEW ORLEANS — Seniors Whitney Gathright andDonyeah Mayfield scored 18 points apiece Friday to help Xavier University of Louisiana earn a 68-57 women's basketball victory against Langston in the final game of the Xavier Classic.
The Gold Nuggets (5-2), ranked 21st in NAIA Division I, finished 2-0 in the four-team, two-day event. The Lady Lions (4-2), ranked 18th, were 1-1.

Gathright also had a career-high 11 assists, zero turnovers and a season-high-tying four steals. Her 3-pointer on the first possession of the fourth quarter put Xavier ahead to stay, 47-44.

Langston's Alexus Johnson, the No. 3 scorer in NAIA Division I, had 21 points and 17 rebounds before fouling out with 5:08 remaining and her team trailing by seven. T'Keya Mason had 17 points, eight rebounds and five assists.

It was the first time in Bo Browder's 17 seasons as head coach that the Nuggets defeated ranked opponents on consecutive days. Xavier beat No. 16 Shawnee State 74-70 Thursday. Xavier is 4-1 against ranked opponents this season.

"Our team is working hard and continues to improve every time we step on the floor," Browder said. "I like our team's attitude toward defense this season."

Xavier limited Langston to its fewest points this season. The Lady Lions entered the game averaging 78 points.

The Gold Nuggets will play Mobile at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday at XU's Convocation Center.


Ed Cassiere, Sports Information Director

GameDay Preview: Tuskegee at North Alabama


1. The bigger picture: Tuskegee recorded its first playoff win in school history with a 26-16 victory over Catawba College last week. The win revamped a team that was down after missing out on the conference championship and had to wait to see if it’d even make the playoffs.

“It was exciting. Getting our first win out the way really meant a lot,” quarterback Kevin Lacey said. “The momentum for us really picked up and it’s carrying over to practice. Guys see the bigger picture now. A lot of guys were down about not winning the conference, but you have to let that go. There’s a bigger task at hand. You can prove you’re the best in Division II, and that second opportunity means a lot.”

2. Familiar faces: Not only is it a big game because it’s the second round of the playoffs, the game against North Alabama also has special meaning to Tuskegee coach Willie Slater. Slater was the offensive coordinator at UNA from 1992-99, winning three national championships. His quarterback at the time, Cody Gross, is now the offensive coordinator for the Lions.


WSSU gets road victory over Virginia Union

RICHMOND, Virginia — Winston-Salem State got plenty of balance on its way to a nonconference win over Virginia Union on Friday night at Barco-Stevens Hall.

The Rams came away with an 82-71 victory to improve to 4-2 on the season. Even though the Panthers (2-3) and Rams are in the CIAA, it was a designated nonconference game and doesn’t count in the conference standings.

Damone Harrison led the way for the Rams with 21 points, and Carlos Rankins and Rayvon Harris each added 12 points. C.J. Ford scored 10 points as all nine WSSU players had at least one basket.

Coach James Wilhelmi of the Rams said by telephone after the game that he loved the balanced scoring.

“I know I’ve said it before, but that’s Ram basketball,” Wilhelmi said. “We try to find those mismatches to take advantage of what we can, and I like how the guys are spreading the ball around.”


Jackson State Men’s Basketball Downs Savannah State 69-42

JACKSON, Mississippi --  Paris Collins and Javeres Brent combined for 36 points and nine rebounds to help the Jackson State men’s basketball to a 69-42 victory over Savannah State at the Lee E. Williams Athletics and Assembly Center.

The Tigers overcame a three-point first half deficit and outscored Savannah State 46-16 in the second half en route to the victory.

Collins led all scorers with 19 points on 7-14 shooting from the floor. He also pulled down five rebounds and dished out a game high five assists. Brent followed with 17 points on 6-14 shooting.

Christopher Martin led Savannah State with 14 points.

JSU’s bench outscored Savannah State’s 40-15 and held the advantage in points in the paint (30-10).

JSU held Savannah State to 27.1 percent shooting from the field (13-48) and 19 percent from three-point range (4-21). The Tigers shot 44.8 percent from the field (26-58) and 40.9 percent in threes (9-22).

JSU returns to action Sunday, Nov. 29 when the Tigers travel to face Marquette. Tip-off is set for 12:30 p.m.



Dillard beats NAIA No. 16 Shawnee State at XU Classic

NEW ORLEANS — Alena Evans scored 20 of her career-high 31 points in the second half Friday, leading Dillard to an 80-71 women's basketball victory against NAIA No. 16 Shawnee State in the Xavier Classic.

The Lady Bleu Devils (4-6) earned their second victory of the season against a ranked opponent.

After a halftime tie at 39, Evans was 7-of-7 from the floor and 6-of-7 from the line. Her basket at 5:23 of the third quarter put Dillard ahead to stay, 51-50.

Alyssa Washington scored 15 points for Dillard, and Shaelynn Moore and Rashida Ademosu scored 12 apiece.

Ali Zieverink, NAIA Division I's leading scorer, had 23 points for the Bears (7-2). Abby Feuchter had 12 points and 12 assists, and Ashton Lovely and Madison Ridout scored 10 points apiece.

Feuchter set a Xavier Classic record for assists in a game. The previous record was 11 by Rust's Tremelanie McFadden against Mobile in 2011.

Dillard finished 1-1 in the Xavier Classic, and Shawnee State was 0-2.

Ed Cassiere, Sports Information Director

600 shoes a year: Inside the Southwestern Athletic Conference's Nike deal

BIRMINGHAM, Alabama -- An annual $10,000 Nike account for the conference commissioner. Hundreds of pairs of sneakers for each school. Six-hundred-fifty white t-shirts for the conference. Free tickets for Nike at the Bayou Classic and conference championships.

These are some of the provisions of the Birmingham-based Southwestern Athletic Conference's five-year deal with Nike.

The contract is a piker compared to the gangbuster corporate deals between apparel companies and big time football schools such as the University of Alabama. ESPN estimates that the market for collegiate-licensed apparel $4.6 billion annually.

The Nike agreement supplies the conference, which generated $6.1 million in revenue in 2013, with some swag and cash. Athletes at the conference schools have to wear Nike shoes as a result.

Two Alabama schools benefit from the deal: Alabama A&M University and Alabama State University. So do fellow SWAC members Alcorn State University; Grambling State University; University of Arkansas-Pine Bluff; Jackson State University; Mississippi Valley State University; Prairie View A&M University; Southern University & A&M College; and, Texas Southern University.


Rush 4-0 vs. NCAA D2s after beating Clark Atlanta

NEW ORLEANS — Morris Wright scored 21 points Friday to lead Xavier University of Louisiana to an 85-72 men's basketball victory against Clark Atlanta.

Wright, a senior point guard, reached 20 points for the third consecutive game and the fifth time in the last six games.

The Gold Rush (7-2), ranked 19th in NAIA Division I, defeated an NCAA Division II opponent for the fourth time in as many tries this season. Xavier, a longtime elite NAIA program, is 23-7 against NCAA D2s during Dannton Jackson's 13 seasons as coach.

Xavier's Gary Smith matched his career high of 16 points, and RJ Daniels scored 11 to reach double figures for the third consecutive game.

James Arnold scored 16 points, Lawrence Freeman 15 and Tim Sanders 10 for Clark Atlanta (0-5).

Smith's basket in the seventh minute put Xavier ahead to stay, 13-11. The Gold Rush led 45-31 at halftime and maintained a double-digit lead for all but one second of the final period.

The Gold Rush shot 50 percent from the floor and reached 50 percent for the fifth consecutive home game. Xavier outrebounded the Panthers by 16, a season best, and improved to 7-0 at home.
Xavier will play Mobile (6-0) at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday at XU's Convocation Center. Mobile gave Xavier its first loss of the season Nov. 17.


Ed Cassiere, Sports Information Director