#12 “LADY HORNETS” (3-26; 2-14 MEAC) vs. #5 Norfolk St. “Spartans” (14-14; 9-7 MEAC)

Mon. Mar. 6, 2017 - 1:00 p.m.                                                                                                      
Norfolk, Va. (Scope Arena  - 10,253)                                                       
MEAC Tournament—Opening Round

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Delaware State Head Coach Barbara Burgess (Delaware State, ‘90): 12-47 at DSU (2nd year), 24-86 career (Sixth year); 0-2 vs. Norfolk State; 8-24 in MEAC regular season; 0-1 MEAC Tournament     
Norfolk State Head Coach Larry Vickers (Norfolk State, ‘07): 17-22 at NSU and career (first season, plus 11 games as interim head coach in 2015-16); 1-1 vs. DSU 

The Lady Hornets (3-26; 2-14 MEAC regular season) hobble into the MEAC Tournament as the No. 12 seed. Delaware State brings an eight-game losing streak into the tournament, including a 93-76 setback to Howard in the  regular season finale last Thursday. NaJai Pollard led the Lady Hornets with 26 points and nine rebounds. DSU played the game without Mikah Aldridge , Ivana Negron and Kia Abrams due to injuries. Pollard, who was named to the 2016-17 All-MEAC First Team last week, has put together one of the most outstanding seasons in team history. She leads the league in scoring (18.6 ppg), rebounding (9.8 pg) and field goal percentage (.540) entering the tournament. Aldridge is second on the team and sixth in the league in scoring at 13.5 points per game. She ‘s also second in the MEAC in three-point field goals, knocking down 2.3 per game. 

Norfolk State (14-14; 9-7 MEAC) is looking to end a four-game slide. The Spartans ended the regular season with a 77-65 loss to Hampton on Feb. 27. Gabrielle Swinson led three Norfolk State players in double-figures with 19 points in the game. Jordan Strode added 16 points and Dominique Harper 15 in Norfolk State’s regular season finale. Kayla Roberts, a 2016-17 All-MEAC First Team selection, is the leading scorer on the Spartans at 12.3 points per game. She’s also third in the league in rebounding at 9.1 per contest.   

HORNETS vs. Spartans Series History (DSU leads 23-19)
The Hornets and Spartans met once during the 2016-17 regular season, with Norfolk State coming  out on top 82-74 on Jan. 16 in Dover, Del. The Lady Hornets led 13-6 in the early going but trailed 22-19 after the first quarter and 47-33 at the half. Norfolk State led by as many as 24 points in the third quarter. Delaware State rallied late, but could get no closer than seven in the fourth quarter. The loss overshadowed another double-double performance by DSU’s NaJai Pollard, who tied for game-high honors with 21 points and led all players with a career-high 18 rebounds. Mikah Aldridge also tallied 21 points for the Lady Hornets, while Kayla Roberts scored 21 and Khalilah Ali 20 to lead Norfolk State in the regular season meeting between the teams.

The Hornets and Spartans are meeting in the MEAC Tournament for the second time in three years and fifth time overall. Delaware State holds a 3-1 lead in tournament contests against Norfolk State, although the Spartans won the last meeting 70-45 in 2015. The Hornets posted MEAC Tournament wins over Norfolk State in .2001 (81-64), 2004 (50-44) and 2007 (63-55).





Delaware State women's basketball