The Florida A&M women’s basketball team’s hot streak continues with no end in sight.
Paced by dominating performances on both ends of the court, the Lady Rattlers (14-5, 7-0 MEAC) cruised past Delaware State (3-15, 0-5 MEAC) 84-65 in Memorial Hall on Monday night, extending their winning streak to 11 games and remaining perfect in conference play.
FAMU now leads the all-time series over Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference rival DSU by a 28-18 margin.
“They want to win; they want to continue the winning streak,” head coach Ledawn Gibson said after the game. “They’re representing the university very well, and I think they’ve done a great job.
“Intensity and focus made the difference this game. We had a couple days to rest and relax because the game wasn’t right after travel. All of that played a little part in the game’s outcome.”
The Lady Rattlers were steered by Tameka McKelton as she scored a game-high 25 points, followed by Antonia Bennett with 24 points, and11 boards for a double-double. Kimberly Sparkman supported the offense with 12 points and four assists, while Qiana Donald posted 10 points and eight boards.
The Lady Rattlers wasted little time on offense, stringing together a series of runs early in the first half. With 3:52 to go, the team jumped out to a 45-13 lead capped by a Tameka McKelton jumper.
FAMU kept its momentum for the remainder of the half, entering halftime with a 47-20 advantage.
The Lady Rattlers finished the first half shooting 55.2 percent from the field (16-of-29), 36.4 percent from three-point range and 73.3 percent from the free-throw line.
FAMU’s stifling defense appeared to be more than the Hawks could handle, as they entered the half shooting a lowly 24.2 percent from the field (8-of-33), 33.3 percent from beyond the arc (1-of-3) and 37.5 percent from the charity stripe (3-of-8).
“We all came out, played together and pretty much did what we do,” Donald said about the team’s defensive performance, which tallied 16 steals. “We had a lot of energy. We came out hustling from the jump start, and we just put our foot on the gas.”
The Hornets would trim its deficit slightly during the second half, but the Lady Rattlers would counter with solid defensive and offensive consistency, maintaining the lead for the entire game to seal an 84-65 victory.
The Lady Rattlers would close the game on 50 percent shooting from the field (29-of-58), 42.1 percent shooting from beyond the arc (8-of-19) and 78.3 percent shooting from the line (18-of-23).
Trailing FAMU in nearly every statistical category, DSU finished shooting 33.3 percent from the field (22-of-66), 40 percent from three-point range (4-of-10) and 60.7 percent from the charity stripe (17-of-28).
Chelsea Dukes (21) and Tierra Hawkins (16) were the Hornets’ leading scorers on the game.
FAMU will return to action on Sat., Jan. 28, as it kicks off its home stand against conference-rival Bethune-Cookman in the Alfred Lawson Center at 4 p.m.