Defense Leads Aggies to First Conference Win
DOVER, Del. (January 8, 2018) – In their Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) opener, the North Carolina A&T women’s basketball team cruised to a 66-48 road victory at Delaware State University (2-14, 1-2) on Monday inside Memorial Hall.
“It feels great to open the conference season with a win,” said N.C. A&T head coach Tarrell Robinson. “We are now on top of the conference at 1-0 and it gets fun now. We also got our first road victory of the season which is what we talked about. We played well for majority of the game, but I did not like how we finished the game. We have to get better at executing at the end and be better closers. But a win is a win especially on the road. We will take it.”
The Aggies (6-7, 1-0 MEAC) held the Hornets (2-14, 1-2 MEAC) to 22.8 percent shooting, the lowest shooting percentage of an Aggies opponent this season. Three Aggies finished in double figure scoring led by senior Kala Green’s 16 points on 6-for-10 shooting from the field. Sophomore C’Coriea Foy had 14 points on four made 3-pointers, and sophomore Alexus Lessears scored 11 points, grabbed nine rebounds and blocked four shots. Another sophomore, Le’on Hill, garnered a game-high 11 rebounds and blocked two shots.
“Kala has taken ownership of this team, the program and what is going to happen to our team. She is very vocal in practice and it is showing up in games, so I hope she continues to do those things,” said Robinson who improved to 7-0 against the Hornets as the Aggies head coach. “C’Coriea Foy got us out of the hole in the first quarter with her shooting from 3-point range.”
The Aggies trailed the Hornets 11-3 within the first five minutes of the game. Early turnovers and missed shots started to fall in favor of the Aggies halfway through the quarter as Foy and sophomore Cinia McCray anchored the Aggies rally. Back-to-back 3-pointers by Foy and two free throws by McCray brought the Aggies to within three, 14-11. With one-minute remaining in the period, McCray hit the Aggies third shot from behind the arc to give N.C. A&T a 16-15 lead at the end of the quarter.
The second quarter was dominated by the Aggies due to their defensive pressure. The Hornets were held to 20 percent from the field while the Aggies found their rhythm by shooting 44 percent. DSU was held scoreless for three minutes and trailed N.C. A&T 28-17 on a 3-pointer by Green at the 2:49 mark. The Aggies rolled into halftime ahead, 32-22.
Lessears highlighted the third period scoring six of her 11 points as she made both of her attempts from the field and made a pair of free throws. The Hornets struggled with only three made field goals and trailed by 20, 51-31 with two minutes remaining in the third. DSU was held to only two field goals in the final period, but made 11 of 17 free throws in the fourth quarter. Green and sophomore Mikaya Wilson guided the Aggies by combining for nine points. N.C. A&T held Delaware State to 13 field goals and four assists while forcing 24 turnovers.
The Aggies margin of victory this season is 27.5 points. NaJai Pollard led the Hornets with 13 points while Lanayjha Ashe chipped in with 12 points.
The Aggies host Morgan State 2 p.m., Saturday, Jan. 13 at Corbett Sports Center.