Thompson Leads Howard To Win Over NC A&T
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Calvin Thompson recorded a double-double and Curtis White and Dadrian Collins added 12 and 10, respectively as Howard University defeated North Carolina A&T, 59-49 in a Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference men's game at Burr Gymnasium.
The Bison (7-19 overall, 6-5 in the MEAC) set the tone early by bolting out to a 12-4 lead in the first nine minutes en route to a 32-21 lead at the half.
It was Thompson (six points), Collins (six points) and reserve guard Kyle Riley (seven points), who combined for 19 of the points. A 6-2 sophomore guard, Thompson also made his presence felt on the boards as he led all players with seven.
"Calvin got us off to a great start," said Howard Coach Gil Jackson. "He is a great defender but he also has the ability to control the game in other ways. He did a good job of setting up teammates, scoring when we needed it and helping out on the boards."
Howard threatened to blow the game open in the second half when it opened the half with a 14-2 run that gave them a 46-23 lead at the 13:22 mark. White, Collins and Thompson combined for four three pointers during the run.
"Our three-point shooting puts us in and out of games," said Coach Jackson. "There was a point there where we got some good looks and were able to knock them down. It gave us a big boost." After missing seven of nine from beyond the stripe in the first 20 minutes, the Bison canned six of 15 on the second half.
The Aggies (8-17 overall, 4-7 in the MEAC) on the other hand never could find any rhythm as they shot 33 percent (18 of 54) from the field, including a frigid 3 of 24 from three-point range.
"It was good to be playing at home after four games on the road," said Coach Jackson. "I thought the crowd gave us a lot of energy tonight and that gave us an extra lift."
The Aggies, who were swept by the Bison, were led by Marc Hill, who came off the bench to score a team-high 13 points and Tavarus Alston and Robert Smith, who each had eight. Thomas Coleman contributed seven points and 11 rebounds.
In addition to his 14 points and 12 rebounds, Thompson also recorded five assists. White scored eight of his 10 in the second half and Collins chipped in with 12.
With the win, the Bison are positioning themselves for the MEAC tournament, which gets underway March 9.
"We are all clumped together in the middle of the pack," said Coach Jackson, referring to the number of teams that within two games of each other in the conference. "Everyone is looking for separation. It is crucial to get these home wins so that we can push ourselves into the Top 3 in the conference. (Mike) DeLoach of Norfolk State is a great player so Monday is going to be a tough game."
NEXT UP: North Carolina A&T travels to Hampton, VA to take on the Pirates of Hampton at 7:30 pm while the Bison will host the Spartans of Norfolk State on Monday at 4 pm.