Mukole Leads Howard To Win Over Navy
Washington, D.C. - Kandi Mukole scored all 10 of his points in the last seven minutes to lead five players in double figures as Howard University pulled away to a 75-65 win over Navy in a non-conference men's basketball game at Burr Gymnasium.
After the Midshipmen erased a 10-point Bison lead to get to within 49-48 at the 7:32 mark, Mukole took over, converting on a field goal to give his team a 51-48 advantage. From there, the 6-8 sophomore forward from the Belgium Congo, converted on all eight of his free throw attempts while adding a couple of big defensive rebounds and key blocked shot.
"I didn't do a great job in the first half," admitted Mukole. "I just wanted to be more aggressive on both ends of the court in the second half. I knew that I had to step my game up if we were going to have a chance to win."
Equally important in the victory was the play of Myatt, who also had 10 points after intermission and a key assist on a three-pointer by Curtis White (10 points).
‘On that three pointer that I hit with the clock running down, I got a good look and it felt good leaving my hand," explained Myatt, who finished with 15 points and a team-high five assists. "Then on the assist, I knew they were going to double me, so I just got the ball to Curtis and felt that he had a great chance to hit the shot."
It keyed a 7-1 run that put the lead at 68-62 and thus setting up Mukole's clutch free throw shooting down the stretch.
Also contributing to the victory were Randy Hampton, who set the tone for the Bison when he tallied 11 of his 16 points in the first 20 minutes and Jeron Smith, who came off the bench to tie for scoring honors with 16.
"The tempo changed several times tonight," explained Howard Coach Gil Jackson. "Navy jumped in the passing lanes and we didn't see them. That led to some easy baskets and they hit some big Threes. I thought we did a great job down the stretch hustling for every loose ball."
Navy (2-6) got a game-high 18 points from Greg Sprink and 16 from Adam Teague off the bench.
The Bison (3-4) shot a respectable 49 percent from the field and out-rebounded the Mids, 46-30. This was Howard's fourth game in seven days and it has two more in a four-game span. But perhaps none is more important that Saturday's clash with Hampton in the Big Apple Classic at Madison Square Garden.
"It's a big game and it's a conference game which makes it bigger," said Jackson. "It's going to be in a great venue and it's going to be a great way to showcase the MEAC conference."
GAME NOTES: The Bison are on a pace to have a record-breaking season for blocked shots...they recorded four more...the Howard defense held Navy to 27 percent shooting in the second half...it was the Bison's first win over Navy.