Lady Rattlers Lose to Pirates

The Florida A&M women’s basketball team started slowly against the No. 1 team in the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference on Monday. The Hampton University Lady Pirates scored 48 first half points in route to an 88-49 victory.

Antonia Bennett rolled her ankle early in the first half and played just 2 minutes. Bennett’s injury hurt momentum early for the Lady Rattlers.

“Bennett is very versatile and can play the two, three, and four position,” head coach LeDawn Gibson said.

Her versatility is vital for rotations and matchups against other conference teams. The Lady Pirates (20-6, 12-1 in the MEAC) attacked early when they realized the early first half momentum shift.

Bennett is likely to miss Saturday’s game against North Carolina Central. Since the Lady Rattlers are playing a non-conference opponent Saturday, Bennett will rest her ankle.

Tamika McKelton, the second leading scorer in the MEAC, scored eight points. The scoring load was picked up by her teammates. Christian Rateree and Jasmine Grice scored 10 points each.

FAMU (13-12 8-6 in the MEAC) shot 44 percent from the field and scored only 22 first half points.

The Lady Rattlers struggled from the three-point line as well. The team shot two of nine from behind the arc.

The Lady Pirates shot 60 percent from the field in the first half in their division clinching victory. The team continued offensive success from the floor in the second half, shooting 50 percent from the field.

Hampton finished with four players with 12 or more points in the game.

Choicetta McMillian cashed in on five three-pointers and had a team-high 18 points. Jericka Jenkins contributed 11 assists and 17 points to lead Hampton’s offensive attack.

The Lady Pirate defense caused 23 turnovers. They continued to disrupt the Lady Rattler’s offense throughout the contest.

The Lady Rattlers will play Saturday against North Carolina-Central at 4 p.m. in the Al Lawson Center.

The Lady Rattlers now sit fifth in the and have only one more conference game before the conference tournament, which starts on Mar. 7.

The team will look for energy from the home crowd on Senior Night as it tries and rebound from the loss.