|South Carolina State Upsets Top Seed, BCU||< All News|
|Wednesday, March 9, 2016|
NORFOLK, Va.—Amber Howard scored half of her points in the fourth quarter, but it was an opportunistic defense and a grind-it style that proved to be the difference as South Carolina State upset Bethune Cookman, 56-48, in the quarterfinal round of the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference tournament at the Scope.
It marked the second straight season that the top seed has lost to the No. 9 seed in the tournament.
The Lady Bulldogs (13-15), the No. 9 seed, advance to the semifinal round on Friday where they will play the winner of the Morgan State-Coppin State game 12 at noon.
South Carolina State established its tempo from the outset as it took control early with a 15-7 advantage at the end on one. The Lady Bulldogs got their offense from the defense with seven points off Bethune Cookman turnovers.
That would be the theme for the rest of the game as the Lady Wildcat young guards took turns giving the ball up and allowing South Carolina State to capitalize.
The Lady Wildcats (18-12), the No. 1 seed, woke up momentarily in the second quarter and used a strong finished to get within 20-19 at intermission.
Bethune Cookman appeared to flex in the third quarter and briefly took the lead, but South Carolina State made sure that it was short lived as the score was deadlocked at 36 at the end of three quarters.
If there was any question about the outcome of the game, it was answered in the fourth quarter when the Lady Bulldogs used a 10-2 run to close out the game. The Lady Bulldogs were so effective that they held Bethune Cookman without a field goal for almost eight minutes in the quarter.
Howard converted 8-of-9 from the charity stripe down the stretch as the Lady Bulldogs move on.
Bethune Cookman got 14 points and nine rebounds from Kailyn Williams, the MEAC Defensive Player of the Year and a first team All-MEAC selection, 15 from Taylor Houston and 10 points and 9 rebounds from Ashanti Hunt.
The Lady Wildcats won the rebounding battle, 47-34 but they committed 20 turnovers that converted into 26 South Carolina State points.The Lady Bulldogs got 20 from Howard, 10 from Ashleigh Outler and 9 from Brittany Drumgoogle.