The Lady Rattlers marched into their battle against the Alabama State University Hornets on Saturday with the idea that mental dexterity would translate into a win. After taking away a convincing 69-47 victory, it looks like they were right.
“I felt we definitely had a strong chance of winning if we focused and kept our mind on the game,” said senior guard Deidra Jones. “I knew we could dominate,” said the Powder Springs, Ga., native.
Jones confidence could come from the team’s 3-1 record to start the season, which includes blowout wins over Savannah State University, and Albany State University. With Saturday’s 14-point win the team has beaten their opponents by an average of 18 points in their three wins.
Saturday’s victory came on the heels of the team’s tough 71-69 loss to the University of Central Florida. Despite the loss, the teams said they used the holiday break to fine-tune their strategy.
“We practiced our game plan over the Thanksgiving break and we were ready to take them on and dominate on the court,” said freshman shooting guard Tameka Mckelton.FAMU led 37-23 with 2:35 left in the first half, but Alabama State scored a three pointer right before halftime to close the lead to 37-26.
Freshman forward Antonia Bennett said despite the lopsided score the team has improvements to make.
Going into the second half both teams fire cooled down off, with FAMU only shooting 30.3 percent on 10 of 33 from the floor. Alabama State managed to shoot a paltry 16.1 percent on 5 of 31 from the field.
The Lady Rattlers were still able to take a maintain the second half lead.
“I feel we need to work on rebounding and staying strong through out the whole game,” said Bennet who finished the game with 16 points.
Senior guard Stephanie Foster led the team with 19 points to go along with seven rebounds.
The Lady Rattlers say they played with a sense of urgency, which has been sparked by first year head coach LeDawn Gibson.
“Coach Gibson just stressed to us how we needed to go out there and play our game and if we do that we could be a success,” Jones said.
Coach Gibson has the team looking forward to securing the MEAC championship crown.
“Coach is preparing us well with every practice and we are getting better with each practice, our ultimate goal is to win the MEAC championships,” said Jones.
The Lady Rattlers are set to take on the Lady Hurricanes of the University of Miami tonight at 7 in Coral Gables. This will be the first time the two teams will compete against each other. Jones said the team is confident they can take on the ACC giant.
“We are working hard towards this game. Our coach told us we are going into this game as the underdogs. But if we play our game can pull out a victory.” Jones said.