The Lady Rattlers of Florida A&M University (FAMU) lost their last home game of the season to Bethune-Cookman, 42-62. The blowout loss, which is the team’s 23 of the season and twelfth in the MEAC, came during FAMU’s Senior Night.
The Lady Rattlers struggled to find the bottom of the net for the majority of the game. FAMU finished the game 15-70 from the field, an abysmal 21.4 percent. Despite out-rebounding the Wildcats, the Rattlers just could not capitalize and finish scoring opportunities.
Bethune-Cookman’s Ashanti Hunt said it was a point of emphasis for the Wildcats to keep FAMU’s leading scorer Florence Ouattara in check. Ouattara finished the game 1-4 from beyond the three-point line and 4-15 overall.
“I definitely need to work on my shot selection,” Ouattara said after the game.
FAMU was outscored by BCU in the first three quarters but would step it up in the fourth in what turned out to be an unsuccessful attempt at a late comeback. The Lady Rattlers entered the fourth quarter down 24-52 but showed they wouldn’t just bow down and surrender by out-scoring the Wildcats by eight in the final minutes of the game. The seniors on the team held a significant role in the last minute effort.
FAMU senior guard Shakeyrra Morrison shot only 30 percent from the field but did contribute on the backboard with 12 rebounds. Morrison didn’t have much to say after the game, but she did talk about how she got her team to step it up a notch late in the game.
“I feel like once I get on the floor, they just go off of my energy and play hard,” Morrison said.
Although this is the final game of the season, the journey is fortunately not yet over for the Lady Rattlers as they now prepare for the MEAC tournament which begins March 5.
Ouattara, although upset about the loss, said she is motivated by the negative emotions.
Head coach Ledawn Gibson is focused now on the tournament ahead.
“We’re not going to let it hinder us. We’re just going to practice hard the next couple of days and try to figure this out,” Gibson said.
Gibson is optimistic about the team’s chances in the tournament despite its poor record for the season.
“The main thing for me is for them not to get their heads down, keep their heads up and everybody goes in 0-0– it’s 'survive or go home.' I know in my heart these girls want to win. I think that they want it, and we’re going to go out Monday and we’re going to fight until the end.”