NORFOLK, VA – Top-seed Howard got a game-high 25 points from Destiny Howell to down second-seed Norfolk State 61-44 in the women’s MEAC Basketball Tournament Championship at Scope Arena Saturday afternoon.
Howell leads the way
Howell, a second-team all-MEAC selection and the Lady Bison’s leading scorer (12.5 ppg.), had 14 points through two quarters as Howard built a 29-22 lead at halftime. She added another 11 in the second half as Howard pulled away.
Howell also finished with six rebounds and two steals and was named the tournament’s most outstanding player. Lady Bison head coach Ty Grace was named the tourney’s top coach.
By virtue of the win, the Lady Bison (20-9) earn the conference’s automatic berth to the women’s NCAA Div. I Championship playoffs.
Howard takes the rubber match
Howard and Norfolk State (17-11) traded four-point wins on each other’s home floor during the regular season. NSU got its win in the last game of the regular season to tie Howard and Morgan State with 11-3 regular season conference records.
In this game, Howard jumped on top 4-2 on a basket by Brooklyn Fort-Davis at the 7:53 mark of the first quarter and never surrendered the lead. NSU pulled within 3, at 31-28 early in the third period but could only close the gap to 34-30 at the end of three.
The Bison lead reached double-figures at 46-36 when first-team all-MEAC center Anzhane’ Hutton scored inside with 4:32 to play. Hutton who had no points or rebounds in the first half, scored six points and grabbed six boards in the second half.
Howard’s rebounding edge
Howell was the only Bison to reach double-digit scoring. Fort-Davis had 11 rebounds to lead HU to a 46-30 rebounding edge.
Camille Downs, NSU’s first team all-MEAC guard, led the Spartans with 11 points before fouling out in the final minutes. Makoye Diawara added ten points and led NSU off the board with 13 rebounds.