BALTIMORE, MD — The Shaw University women’s basketball team is back in the CIAA Championship Game for the first time since 2016. And it looks to be a contentious one.
Shaw defeated reining CIAA champs Lincoln University 59-45 on Friday night to advance to the championship game. Shaw will face Elizabeth City State on Saturday in CFG Bank Arena.
Tanayja London led the way with 23 points on 11-for-23 shooting from the field to go along with eight rebounds.
Defensively, Shaw forced Lincoln into 23 turnovers, which it converted into 19 points. Shaw also out-rebounded Lincoln by 13 to come away with the win.
Lincoln finishes the season 19-10 and will wait to see if it can earn an at-large bid to the NCAA Tournament next month.
Shaw coach questions CIAA scheduling methodology
Saturday’s women’s championship game is set to tip off at 4 PM and will be broadcast live on ESPN-Plus. That timing is due to the women’s game taking place after the men’s championship game. It’s usually the other way around, but the conference decided to make the men go first instead of the women instead of the traditional order.
Shaw head coach Jacques Curtis is clearly not a fan.
“We’re probably the team that nobody thought was going to be here. You came here and you’ve made us play at 8:00 at night. We played at 10:00 in the morning, 12:00 in the morning. And then you make us play 8:00 at night and you want us to come back at 4:00?”
Curtis explained he felt there would be an unfair advantage to its opponent — ECSU — which played at noon Friday and will have had a full 24 hours of rest compared to his team’s quick turnaround.
“That didn’t make any sense to me. I’m venting now,” Curtis continued. “The team we’re playing playing at 12 today, and now we’re playing at 8:00 tonight. And then we got to come in 4:00 tomorrow. But guess what? We ain’t going nowhere.”
Shaw and ECSU met twice during the regular season, with Shaw winning both meetings. Curtis made no attempt to hide the fact that the two teams down’t like each other.
“It’s definitely some bad blood between the two teams. I mean — that’s going to be a game. You know, they don’t like us. We don’t like them, but they didn’t think we were going to be here. The coach said on television she was looking forward to a rematch of last year. Well, you’re not getting a rematch. You’re getting us.”