Howard Women and Men Open Home Conference Schedule
The Howard University women's and men's basketball teams open the 2011 home conference schedule when they host North Carolina A&T on Saturday at Burr Gymnasium. The women's game gets underway at 2 pm while the men tip off at approximately 4:15 pm.
The Lady Bison (3-12 overall, 0-3 in the MEAC) have dropped six in a row and are looking for their first MEAC victory of the season. In its latest game on Monday against Coppin State, Howard was again plagued by the lack of scoring during a 58-46 road loss. During the current streak, the Lady Bison have failed to score 50 points in three straight games and have scored more than 60 points only once this season.
Red-shirt sophomore forward Saadia Doyle, a pre-season first team All-MEAC selection and last year's Rookie of the Year, has been the team's most consistent scorer, averaging 17.0 points and 8.7 rebounds per game.
Sophomore guards Cheyene Curley Payne (7.9) and Tamoria Holmes (7.1) have supplied additional scoring but the Lady Bison have failed to get consistent scoring from anyone else.
The Lady Aggies (6-6 overall, 3-0 in the MEAC), the defending regular season champions, are off another fine start, having won two in a row, including a 69-50 win over Bethune-Cookman this past Monday, and three of the past four.
NC A&T is led by Jaleesa Sams (16.2 ppg, 5.8 rpg), Jaquayla Berry (10.1 ppg, 7.8 rpg) and Mikala Scott (8.4 points per game. The Lady Aggies swept Howard last season.
In the men's game, the Bison (2-13 overall, 0-3 in the MEAC) will also be looking to snap a losing streak and capture their first conference win. Howard is coming off a 53-84 road loss to Coppin State on Monday, their fifth in a row.
The undermanned Bison, who have lost key players to injuries, illness and death in the family, have been competitive, but a lack of production from the bench has been the nemesis all season, particularly in the second half. Three of the Howard starters are averaging in double figures, led by sophomore forwards Mike Phillips (13.6 ppg, 7.1 rpg) and Dadrian Collins (10.9 ppg, 4.6 rpg), and sophomore guard Anton Dickerson (10.0 ppg). Guard Kyle Riley (7.0 ppg), the team's lone senior and freshman center Alphonso Leary (6.2 ppg, 4.5 rpg), round out the Iron-Man starting five. They combine for 51 of the team's 55-point per game average. Moreover, they are all averaging 30 minutes per game.
The Aggies (7-9 overall, 2-1 in the MEAC) had a two-game win streak snapped on Monday, losing 72-69 to Bethune-Cookman. NC A&T is led by Nic Simpson (15.1 ppg, 2.3 rpg), Thomas Coleman (14.7 ppg, 10.7 rpg) and Marc Hill (10.9 ppg).
Howard won both games during the regular season last year, but the Aggies prevailed in the MEAC Tournament.
The two teams continue their MEAC home stand on Monday when the Lady Bison play the Lady Spartans of Norfolk State University at 6 pm. That game will be followed by the Howard men taking on the Norfolk State men's team at 9 pm on a game that will be nationally televised on ESPNU.