Howard Women Snap Skid With 69-53 Win Over N.C. A&T
WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Howard University women's basketball team snapped its seven-game skid with a convincing 69-53 win over North Carolina A&T (6-8, 3-1 MEAC) at Burr Gymnasium on Sat. Jan. 15. HU improves to 4-13 on the year and captured its first conference win by scoring a season-high 69 points. This is the first win over the Aggies since 2007.
"The difference between this conference game and the last two is the fact that the team was able to stay poised," said head coach Niki Geckeler. "They were focused from start to finish."
For the game, the Lady Bison shot 43.1 percent from the floor (25-for-58). "I think we had a great effort from Cheyenne and Saadia," commented Geckeler. Doyle tallied her eighth double-double of the year with a game-highs of 29 points and 15 boards. Curley-Payne finished with a career-high 21 points and dished out six assists. Adelle Walton chipped in with nine points.
The Lady Bison scored 27 points off 22 Aggies miscues. "The key to today was to stay poised on offense and defense," said Curley-Payne. HU also held a 41-35 lead on the glass over N.C. A&T. "We put together a whole game on both sides of the floor," Doyle added.
The Lady Bison struck first within the opening minute with a Curley-Payne layup. The Aggies took a slim 6-4 advantage, until Kara Smith jumper tied the score. Highlighted by a fast-break layup, Howard rattled off 10 straight unanswered points to take a 16-6 lead – the largest margin of the game – midway through the period. N.C. A&T ended the HU run with a pair at the line by Mikala Scott at the 8:57 mark.
Two baskets by Doyle pushed the spread to 20-8 at the 6:35 mark, but the Aggies used a 10-3 run over a three-plus span to slice into the advantage and cut it to 23-18 at 2:41. The Lady Bison closed the first period with a 7-3 run to increase the margin back to double-digits (32-31) at the half.
Doyle scored 11 points off 4-of-8 shooting from the field. Howard went 14-of-32 from the field for a 43.8 shooting clip while holding the Aggies to 33 percent shooting (8-for-24).
In the second 20 minutes, HU held a comfortable advantage throughout the half and led by as many as 13 (48-35) at the 12:39 mark. The Aggies proceeded to go on an 8-1 run to cut it to 49-43 with just under 10 minutes left in regulation. Howard responded with a 18-4 run of its own to take a commanding 67-47 advantage – and did not look back.
"We were able to maintain our composure throughout the game," said Coach Geckeler.
For N.C. A&T, Mikala Scott paced her team with 21 points – including 17 in the first half. Jaquayla Berry and Reisha Bullock scored 10 points apiece. Jaleesa Sams recorded a team-best eight rebounds.
"For the next game, I am hoping for consistency," commented Geckeler looking ahead to Monday's match. The Lady Bison will host Norfolk State on Jan. 17 beginning at 6 p.m.