UMES SET FOR REMATCH AGAINST ROUTE 13 RIVAL DELAWARE STATE
Jan. 17, 2013
PRINCESS ANNE, Md. - The Lady Hawks will write another chapter of the Route 13 rivalry on Saturday when they take on Delaware State at 2 p.m. at the Hytche Athletic Center.
Tickets are $10 for the whole doubleheader on Saturday, including the men's game following the women's contest. All UMES students and faculty may enter for free with a school ID.
In addition, Saturday is "Take A Kid to the Game" day. All children 11 and under may come to the Hytche for free with a paying adult. All children attending as part of the event will receive a coupon for free food and drink at the game.
Both UMES and Delaware State are 1-1 in conference play coming into Saturday. UMES stands at 5-8 overall, while Delaware State is 4-11.
LAST TIME OUT: After trailing most of the second half, UMES forced overtime and prevailed against Norfolk State 86-80 for its first MEAC victory of the year. The Lady Hawks were strong from beyond the arc, scoring 14 three-pointers, the highest amount in the Fred Batchelor era. After Recca Trice missed a potential game-winning free throw with 1.1 seconds left in regulation, UMES started the overtime period on a 9-3 run and held on for the victory. Karona Roach earned a career-high 31 points, while Sha-Kiyla Finney finished with 14 points and six assists. For NSU, Kashay Barnes shot 10-19 for 25 points, adding three assists.
SERIES HISTORY: This is the second meeting this season between the Route 13 rivals UMES and Delaware State, with the Lady Hornets leading the overall series 47-34. In the first meeting of the season on December 1st, Delaware State defeated UMES 67-52 in Dover, faced by Tierra Hawkins scoring 28 points off 12-15 shooting, snapping a three-game winning streak by UMES in the series. Karona Roach led UMES with 14 points in the MEAC opener.
SCOUTING THE LADY HORNETS: Delaware State comes into Saturday's contest at 4-11 and 1-1 in conference play, last playing on Monday with a 76-34 victory over Wesley at home. This is DSU's first MEAC game since a December 3rd defeat against Howard. Redshirt sophomore guard stands third in the MEAC with 18.1 points a game, also being the team's leading rebounder with 6.7 a contest. Sophomore forward Keyanna Tate has a MEAC-best 54.7% field-goal percentage, averaging 7.3 points and 6.1 rebounds a contest.
KARONA LEADS THE WAY: Senior Karona Roach is doing it all for UMES this season. She is averaging 15.5 points per contest this season, leading UMES in scoring in 11 out of 13 games and standing sixth in the MEAC in points per game, earning a career-high 31 points in her last game against Norfolk State. She also leads the team with 28 steals, 31 assists and an 81.5% free throw percentage. Roach stands in the top-15 in the MEAC in scoring, free throw percentage, three-point shooting percentage and assists per game.
UDOJI - MEAC'S TOP SHOT BLOCKER: Alexis Udoji currently leads the MEAC with 24 blocks and 1.8 blocked shots per game. The two-time MEAC Rookie of the Week had a career-high six blocks against Towson and earned a pair of blocks last time out against NSU. Udoji shoots 40% and is second on the team with 5.6 rebounds a contest.
HAWKS HUSTLE IN OVERTIME: With UMES's victory over Norfolk State last week, the Lady Hawks have won their last three overtime games dating back to last season. Last season, UMES defeated both American and Norfolk State in overtime contests.
STEWART DOMINATES THE BOARDS: Shanyce Stewart has been a consistant rebounder for UMES in all games she has played in this season. Stewart averages 8.6 rebounds a contest, standing 5th in the MEAC, and leading the team with 36 offensive boards and 59 defensive boards. She has earned at least seven rebounds in each contest played this season.
LADY HAWKS ARE HOT FROM THE PERIMETER: UMES is one of the best three-point shooting teams in the conference, shooting 32.6%, third in the MEAC, and netting a league second-best 5.3 three-pointers a game. The Lady Hawks have scored at least four three-pointers in 11 out of 13 games this season, including 14 last time out against Norfolk State in 27 attempts. Karona Roach is shooting 44.2% from beyond the arc to lead the Lady Hawks, while Shawnee Sweeney is second at 32.7%.
RETURNING GUARDS GREATLY IMPROVING SCORING: Four UMES guards have at least tripled their average offensive output from last season. UMES's leading scorer Karona Roach is scoring 15.5 points a contest after averaging just four last year. Sha-Kiyla Finney was averaging 2.3 points per game in the 2011-12 season and this year earns 8.3 points a contest. Primary point guard Jessica Long is third on the team with 7.4 points a game after just getting 2.1 each game last season. Shawnee Sweeney is getting 7.3 points a game, over triple her 1.9 points a game output last season.
UMES PREDICTED TO FINISH SIXTH IN THE MEAC: In the preseason predictions, UMES was picked to finish sixth in the MEAC after earning the 6-seed in the conference tournament last season. MEAC runner-up Howard received 15 out of a possible 26 first-place votes and is predicted to win the conference, while defending MEAC champion Hampton is predicted to get second, earning seven first-place votes.