Junior guard Terrence Woods led FAMU with 31 points , helping the Rattlers ensure the 85-65 defeat of Morgan State in Gaither Gymnasium Saturday.
Despite playing without starters’ Michael Griffith, Dominique Jackson and O.J. Sumter due to injury, the Rattlers were still able to run away this win that put them one game over .500 (8-7) past the halfway point of the season for the first time in 13 years.
A bruised knee almost kept Woods out of the game, but luckily for the Rattlers he didn’t.
And now with 58 three-point field goals made and 11 games remaining, Woods is on pace to beat the FAMU record of three-pointers made in a season. The current record is 76.
“I’ve been shooting the ball well the last couple of games and I just figured I was going to come out and try to keep it going,” said Woods, who scored 20 or more points in his previous three games.
Woods is ranked 8th nationally in three-pointers made.
While Woods was the major force from the outside, 6-foot-10-inch, senior center Jermaine Hill’s 20 points and eight rebounds spearheaded the Rattlers’ inside game.
FAMU dominated the inside as they out rebounded the Bears by 16, scored 20 more points in the paint and put in 15 more second chance points.
“Once we read the scouting report, we saw that their tallest guy was about 6-foot-5-inches, 6-foot-6-inches, everybody knew that I would most likely have an advantage, so we just took advantage of the advantage,” Hill said.
Sophomore forward Michael Ayodele also spurred the Rattlers to victory. The transfer from West Virginia, recorded season highs with eight points and nine rebounds.
“I know I haven’t been playing up to my capabilities all year, so the fact that I came out today and showed people that I have heart, I can work hard and I can help this team win; it makes me feel good,” Ayodele said.
The game was tied at 18 with 13:03 left in the first half and from there the Rattlers went on an 11-1 run in which they netted three three-pointers.
The Bears answered with a run of their own but the Rattlers held strong and went into the locker room at halftime up 48-38.
The orange and green then stormed out of the locker room with a 12-2 run to start the second half.
Coach Gillespie was happywith his team’s great defense,which served as the spark plug for his team’s second half surge.
“I was very, very pleased with the defensive effort,” Gillespie added.
“If we are going to make a run in this league and make a run at the tournament, then we have to become the best defensive team in the league.”
The Rattlers continue their season in a conference showdown tonight against Coppin State in Gaither Gymnasium.