Rattlers shine bright on Senior Night, defeat South Carolina State, 57-45


FAMU Guard Corey Staples looking for an open teammate Photo Courtesy: FAMU Athletic

With senior night making its way to the Al Lawson Center on Monday evening, three Florida A&M women’s basketball players left the building with a “bittersweet” victory against South Carolina State, by a score of 57-45.

The Rattlers seemed to dominate the paint all night long, as they were able to outscore SCSU 30-14 in that department. Senior Forward Shalaunda Burney-Robinson led the way, as she finished her night with 13 points and 12 rebounds.

In the team’s post-game press conference, FAMU Head Coach Kevin Lynum praised Burney-Robinson’s effort and what she was able to do on the court.

“When you have the best post player in the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC), it makes it easy to go inside and produce, Lynum said.

“We literally have a walking double-double in our locker room,” Lynum added.

With Burney-Robinson who is currently a graduating senior, she was able to detail what her four years of playing at FAMU meant to her and spoke about her most recent performance

“It feels amazing because that’s one of my goals every game and to be able to reach and achieve that goal is very satisfying and it feels good to be consistent,” Burney-Robinson said.

FAMU guard Corey Staples, who is another graduate student-athlete, spoke about the emotional night and what it meant to her.

“It’s bitter-sweet, I mean it was amazing being able to come out and end (my career) at Al Lawson with a win, but at the same time I’m sad to go because I had some of my best memories here,” Staples said.

The third senior who saw the curtains close in her final home game was senior guard Asia Royster.

Like anybody saying goodbye to something that they love, Royster was emotional after the game and highlighted the impact Coach Lynum had on her and what brought her to FAMU.

“He (Lynum) was one of the only coaches that took a chance on me, (which) was really important and showed me that he wanted me here when no other coaches would take a chance on me,” Royster said.

“I was going to give up (and) then I received his phone call, so it was worth it,” Royster added.

Coach Lynum was able to speak about each of their impacts and what they were able to contribute on and off the court.

“Well these seniors are everything and they controlled our locker room,” Lynum said.

“A lot of times we just look at the things on the court, but when we are talking about leadership, considering we have five freshmen on this team, these ladies (Burney-Robinson, Staples, and Royster) truly exemplified what leadership  is,” Lynum said.

Despite the victory, however, Staples along with her teammates are focused on their next game against Bethune-Cookman University, which will take place on the road March 5.

“We just have to capitalize off of this game and progress, that’s the biggest word and we just have to keep progressing,” Staples said.