WILBERFORCE — The Central State Lady Marauders will enter the 2017 portion of their schedule with positive vibes after a 68-48 conference win over Albany State Dec. 30.
CSU went on a 12-2 run midway through the first period and took a 21-12 lead after the first ten minutes of play. Led by the shooting of Sierra Harley and Ghameerah McCullers, the Lady Marauders scored the first 14 points of the second quarter to increase their lead to 35-12 with 5:47 remaining the half. The night continued to go CSU’s way when forward Mustafa Notter made a halfcourt shot at the buzzer to give her team a 40-18 advantage at halftime.
“Believe it or not, Mustafa actually works on that shot in practice,” CSU Head Coach Sheba Harris said. “She had a clean release and drained it to add to our momentum.”
CSU continued to pad its lead in the early stages of the third quarter. The Lady Marauders put together a 7-0 run to open the half and took a comfortable 56-30 lead into the final period.
The Lady Marauders had an efficient game shooting making 24 of 60 shots and 12 of 16 free throw attempts. CSU made eight three-point shots. McCullers and Harley paced the CSU scoring with 15 points each. Harley also added a game-high six assists and four steals. Tamara Sellers chipped in with 10 points and three steals as CSU improved to 5-5 overall and 2-2 in the SIAC.
The men’s team had a rough shooting second half, losing, 71-65, to Albany State Dec. 30.
The Marauders hit just 29 percent from the field in the final 20 minutes compared to Albany State’s 47.1 percent performance.
Dwight Richard Jr. led CSU with a game-high 18 points and eight rebounds. He was the only CSU player to score in double-figures as the team fell to 5-6, 2-2 in conference play.
Albany State took an early 16-11 lead with 10:27 left in the first half, but by the 5:27 mark CSU responded to even up the score, 21-21, thanks to a three-pointer from Marquise McGuire. The Marauders went on to hit their next six field goal attempts en route to the largest lead of the night, 35-28, with 1:56 remaining before halftime. ASU cut the deficit down to five thanks to an acrobatic finish at the buzzer from Juwan High.
ASU quickly erased the CSU early in the second half as Devontay Ward scored six quick points to help put his team up, 42-41, at the 17:05 mark. While Albany State’s offense began to find momentum, the Marauders managed to weather the storm and regained the lead as a Thomas Farrior scored to give CSU a 54-53 lead with 9:30 remaining. High responded for ASU on the next possession with a three-pointer and his team never trailed again.
The Marauders failed to convert critical shots down the stretch as CSU shooters combined to make just 4 of 15 shot attempts in the final nine minutes.
The Marauders hosted Fort Valley State Monday.
Greene County News report compiled by Scott Halasz.