DELAWARE STATE UNIVERSITY 2017-18 MEN’S BASKETBALL
“HORNETS” (2-21; 0-8 MEAC) vs. N.C. Central “Eagles” (11-10; 5-2 MEAC)
Sat., Feb. 3, 2018 - 4:00 p.m.
Durham, N.C. (McDougald–McLendon Gym - 3,500)
Live Video: NCCUeaglepride.com
Live TV: n/a
Live Audio: n/a
Live Video: NCCUeaglepride.com
Live Stats: NCCUeaglepride.com Twitter updates: @DSUmbb
Delaware State Head Coach Keith Walker (Clemson, ‘81): 42-92 at DSU (4th year, plus 11 games as interim in 2013-14); 133-194 career; 5-9 vs. NCCU; 26-41 MEAC regular season
NCCU Head Coach Lavelle Moton (N.C. Central, ’96): 162-113 at NCCU and career (ninth year);
5-5 vs. DSU
Delaware State (2-21; 0-8 MEAC) begins a two-game road swing with a visit to reigning MEAC champ North Carolina Central. The Hornets are looking for their first win since a 68-55 victory over Georgian Court on Nov. 25, 2017, a string of 17 games. DSU is coming off a 106-86 loss to current MEAC leader Savannah State last Sat. Hornet redshirt freshman Marquis Collins scored a career-high 30 points and Artem Tavakalyan posted his second double-double of the season, but it wasn’t enough to overcome Savannah State’s 20 three-point field goals, tying the MEAC high this season. Collins led the Hornets in scoring for the third time in four games, hitting 11-of-13 shots from the field, including four three-pointers on six attempts. He has scored 82 points in the last four games to raise his season average 8.3 points per game. His 30 points vs. Savannah State were the most by a Hornet since Devin Morgan tallied 31 vs. Hampton on Feb. 22, 2016. Tavakalyan scored 16 points and led all players with 11 rebounds for the Hornets. Simon Okolue added 18 points on 8-of-12 shooting from the field, while Jonathan Walker came off the bench post 10 points (5-6 FGs) for DSU. For the season, center Simon Okolue leads the Hornets in scoring (11.2 ppg), rebounding (7.3 pg) and blocks (21). Tavakalyn is second on the team in scoring at 10.8 points per game and in rebounding at 5.3 per contest. He also has a team-high 31 three-point field goals. Freshman guard Pinky Wiley averages 9.2 points per game and is the team leader with 57 assists.
North Carolina Central (11-10; 5-2 MEAC) is trying to rebound from a 70-64 loss to arch-rival North Carolina A&T last Saturday. The Eagles led by as many as 17 points in the second half before faltering down the stretch. Raasean Davis led NCCU with 15 points, while teammates Reggie Gardner. Jr. and Pablo Rivas added 13 points each. Davis leads the Eagles in scoring (15.3 ppg) and rebounding (7.4 pg) this season. Gardner tops the team with 49 three-point field goals.
HORNETS vs. EAGLES SERIES HISTORY (NCCU leads 21-16)
This is the second meeting between the teams this season. North Carolina Central won the first contest 65-62 on Jan. 3 at DSU’s Memorial Hall. The Hornets had the last shot in the game, but a hurried three-point attempt by Kavon Waller was off-target as time expired. Artem Tavakalyan led three Delaware State players in double figures with a game-high 15 points, highlighted by 8-of-9 shooting at the free throw line. Waller added 13 points (3-6 3pt. FG) and Wiley tallied 10 points and led all players with four assists in the game. Alton Jones (6-6 FT) came off the bench to tie Reggie Gardner, Jr. with 13 points each to lead NC Central. Davis and Jordan Perkins added 10 points each for the Eagles. The last time the teams played at North Carolina Central, the Hornets posted a 69-68 win during the 2016-17 season.