WILBERFORCE — The Central State Marauders women’s basketball team won its regular season finale, beatingLeMoyne-Owen (Tenn.), 72-60, while the CSU men lost to the Magicians by a 77-3 score, Monday Feb. 20 at the Beacom/Lewis Gymnasium.
Having clinched the SIAC West Division on Saturday, CSU’s women remained poised to end the season on a high note. Getting the start on Senior Night, forward Jasmin Dancy scored CSU’s first six points. The Marauders closed the first quarter on a 10-3 run to take a 18-11 lead.
The Marauders increased to 28-16 after another Dancy basket. LOC managed to cut the deficit down to six after a Tenesha Wright three-pointer with 50 seconds left in the half. CSU answered with great ball movement on its next possession which resulted in Ghameerah McCullers knocking down an open jumper to give her team a 32-24 lead at halftime.
CSU built its lead to 50-36 by the 3:22 mark of the third quarter. The Magicians mounted an 11-2 run to end the period trailing CSU, 52-47.
With the score at 59-53 in favor of the Lady Marauders with 5:52 left, CSU took control. Mustafa Notter converted a basket inside to spark a 10-0 run. With a 69-53 lead at the 2:28 mark, CSU was able to cruise to victory.
Four CSU players scored in double-figures. McCullers scored a game-high 24 points in her last game in Beacom/Lewis Gymnasium. Sierra Harley finished with 12 points and five assists. Dancy also recorded 12 points while Bell finished with 11. With the win, CSU finishes the regular season with an 18-7 overall record and a 12-4 mark in the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference.
“Ghameerah has really come through for us all season long. She let the game come to her tonight and was tremendous,” said CSU coach Sheba Harris. ““With a week off before we go to the conference tournament, we are going to focus on being as healthy as possible heading into our opening game.”
CSU will enter the SIAC tournament as the No. 1 seed in the West Division. Earning a first-round bye, CSU will play at 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, March 1. This year’s SIAC tournament is being held at Bill Harris Arena in Birmingham, Ala.
LOC was led by Wright’s 19 points and seven rebounds. The loss drops LOC to 5-22 on the season and 5-11 in conference play.
LeMoyne-Owen beats CSU men: After sitting out most of Saturday’s game due to injury, CSU forward Dwight Richards, Jr. returned to the lineup with a hot shooting hand in the first half. The junior scored 19 points, converting 7 of 12 shots to help his CSU men’s team to a 40-35 lead at intermission.
Led by seven straight points from Justin Street, LOC quickly erased the deficit and took a 47-44 lead with 14:09 to go. CSU regained its composure behind senior Keilan Blanks, who hit back-to-back three-pointers to help CSU claim a 57-53 lead with 9:25 left. LOC responded with an 8-0 run to go up 61-57 with 6:50 to play. LOC remained ahead and increased their lead to 72-64 with 2:12 left on the clock. CSU battled back to narrow the deficit down to 72-68. With 1:10 to go and possession, the CSU offense came up empty and LOC was able to convert free throws down the stretch to seal the victory.
Street finished with 26 points and 7 rebounds to lead his team to victory. Aston Morton came off the bench to score 22 to help his team improve to 9-18 overall and 8-9 in SIAC play.
Richards, Jr. finished with 27 points and nine rebounds to lead CSU’s efforts. Blanks scored 19 points. With the loss, CSU finishes the regular season with a 10-18 overall mark and a 6-11 ledger in the conference.
Story provided by Central State Sports Information Director Nick Novy. (maraudersports.com)