Recap: Rocky first half for Rattlers

Editors Note: The men’s basketball team played four games in the month of December after the final issue of The Famuan was published Dec. 3. For more information or statistics from the team’s December basketball games log on to

Dec. 6

Rattlers second-half rally against Pirates comes up short 55-49

HAMPTON, Va.- Florida A&M’s second-half rally against the Hampton Pirates came up a bit short. The Rattlers dropped a 55-49 Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference men’s basketball contest at the Hampton University Convocation Center.

FAMU earned a split of their conference road opening series for the first time in two seasons. The Rattlers nearly pulled off a comeback after trailing by 17 points at the half.

Hampton shot 50 percent from the floor and 55.6 percent from three-point range to bolt to the huge halftime lead over FAMU, who shot just 32 percent from the field.

The Rattlers outscored Hampton 29-18 in the final half, thanks to the Pirates going ice cold from the floor. HU shot a dismal 4 of 18 overall from the field and 3 of 12 from beyond the three point arc, allowing the Rattlers a chance to close in.

The Pirates also missed 10 foul shots in the second half, which aided the Rattler’s cause even further. The 17-point halftime deficit proved to be too much to overcome as the Rattlers came up short in the end.

Dec. 13, 2004

Coach Gillespie grabs 550th career coaching victory against Jaguars

BATON ROUGE, La. – The Rattlers shot 67 percent from the floor in the second half to rally past Southern University, 85-81 at the F.G. Clark Activity Center Monday night.

The Rattlers, riddled with injuries, trailed 33-28 at halftime, but turned on the juice in the second half, outscoring the Jaguars, 57-48, in the final half.

The win was especially sweet for FAMU Head Coach Mike Gillespie, Sr. Gillespie captured his 550th career win at the high school, junior college and collegiate levels.

Junior guard Tony Tate, who suffered an ankle sprain in practice earlier that week, was sharp. Tate scored a career-high 31 points, while dishing out seven assists and collecting three rebounds. Juniors Jonathan Kelly and Darius Glover each added 15 points for FAMU. Glover led the Rattlers with nine rebounds, while senior Michael Harper added eight boards.

The Rattlers, who shot 38.7 percent from the floor in the first half, caught fire in the second, hitting 21 of 31 shots, and nailing four three-pointers down the stretch.

Dec. 20, 2004

Mississippi State bounces Florida A&M, 104-80t

STARKVILLE, Miss. – The Rattlers had four players score in double figures, but it was not enough, as Mississippi State rolled to a 104-80 victory at the Coliseum.

FAMU got 17 points from junior guard Tony Tate, who added five assists and two steals. Junior Darius Glover added 15 points and four rebounds, while Jonathan Kelly chipped in 14 points and senior O.J. Sumter added 12 points in just 18 minutes. The Rattlers trailed 52-36 at the break, despite Mississippi State shooting 58 percent from the floor and cashing in on all 12 foul shots.

The Bulldogs finished the night 29 of 33 from the foul line, as FAMU post men Glen Elliott and Sumter both fouled out.

In the second half, FAMU made it a bit closer, allowing the Bulldogs just an eight-point margin (52-44).

Mississippi State also dominated the boards, out rebounding the Rattlers, 45-24, limiting FAMU to just six offensive rebounds.

Lawrence Roberts scored a game-high 25 points along with nine rebounds, while guard Winsome Frazier added 24. Forward Shane Power scored 18 points, while point guard Gary Ervin dished out a career-high 14 assists.

Dec. 30, 2004

Oklahoma Sooners race past Florida A&M, 104-45 Thursday

NORMAN, Okla. – The Oklahoma Sooners shot 61 percent from the floor Thursday to take a breezy 104-45 win over Florida A&M in a men’s college basketball game at Lloyd Noble Arena.

FAMU (2-7) never came close to OU (9-2), as they shot just 28.8 percent (15-of-52) from the field, hit only one of 10 three-pointers and were dominated on the boards, as OU out rebounded the Rattlers, 43-25.

Junior Darius Glover led FAMU with 17 points and six rebounds. Guard Tony Tate added 10 points, three steals and two assists. The Sooners shot 58 percent the first half to bolt to a 50-20 lead at halftime, the Sooners then outscored the Rattlers, 54-25 in the second half.

OU finished the night shooting 61.9 percent from the floor and hit eight of their 16 three-pointers. FAMU’s 22 turnovers also hampered their cause, as the Sooners converted those miscues into 34 points.

Compiled by Katrelle Simmons Source:

Center Longar Longar led all scorers with 27 points for OU. Forward Taj Gray and guard Terrell Everett each had 18 points for the Sooners. David Godbolt led all players with eight rebounds for OU, while Longar added seven boards.