Turnovers, Second Chance Opportunities the Difference in Howard Loss
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Central Michigan parlayed some easy baskets off turnovers and several second chance opportunities into a 74-56 win over Howard University in a non-conference women's game at Burr Gymnasium.
The Chippewas (2-0) took control of the game near the end of the first half with an 8-0 run to take a 32-20 lead at the half. During the run, the Lady Bison committed four of their 19 turnovers in the first 20 minutes.
"Taking care of the ball was a problem for us," said Howard first year head coach Niki Reid Geckeler. "We had 19 turnovers in the first half. Free throws and second chance points were the difference in this game."
Britni Houghton and Angel Chan were the chief beneficiaries as they combined for 23 points on 8-of-16 shooting in the opening stanza. Howard guard Zykia Brown kept her team close with 11 of her team's points.
Then the Chippewas broke the game open with in the first seven minutes of the second half with an 18-11 run that gave them a 50-31 lead. Latisha Luckett, who came off the bench to score all of her 10 points in the second half, played a key role in the push.
Howard (0-3) had several chances to reduce the deficit to a workable margin, but each time, a turnover or a second chance basket proved to be just enough to give the Chippewas a cushion.
"We came in with a different game plan," explained Coach Geckeler. "We went with four guards and a post player. It took us a while to get used to that rotation but we caught on and actually improved our scoring."
Senior guard Lonice Kenley came alive in the second half to score eight of her 10 points and Tamaya Daniels stepped up with eight points and a game-high 16 rebounds.
Brown led all scorers with a career-high 22 on 7 of 14 shooting from the field.
"Ziggy (Zykia) really stepped up tonight," said Coach Geckeler. "We wanted to isolate her and she did a good job of finishing strong. She made things happen tonight. We just have to get the team on the same page."
Central Michigan was led by Houghton with 21 and Chan with 14.
The Bison are off for a week and return to action on Nov. 29-30 at the Robert Morris Thanksgiving Classic.