Wednesday, September 30, 2009

The Hornets September Wrap-Up

September was a up and down month for the Delaware State Hornet Fall Athletics. There were several sports that couldn't fit the right notes but fought hard against non-conference opponents. As we begin the month of October here is the recap of the best of September for fall sports.

Lady Hornets Volleyball
The lady hornets Volleyball team had high expectations this season especially trying to compete for the MEAC Championship. Plus Cassandra Joyner had her 1,000th career kill on September 11th at home

So far August and September it's been a up and down season as the lady hornets are a game under .500 at 9-10. They begin the season losing their five of their first six games. Then on September 5th the lady hornets begin to get hot riding a five game game winning streak before losing tough matches to Bucknell, Rutgers, Radford, and La Salle. On September 25 and 26, the DSU begin MEAC play against North Carolina A&T, Winston Salem State, and the new member of the MEAC Conference North Carolina Central. St. Francis got pay back on September 29 to end the lady hornets three game winning streak.

October begins the lady hornets can breathe a little easy after participating in five tournaments in one month. They will begin October with their non-conference game at Lehigh on Tuesday and then begin their MEAC Conference schedule on the weekend of October 9 at home against Hampton and UMES. Then the remainder of October the Lady Hornets will have four of their five games on the road starting with Howard (October 16), Morgan State at home (October 18), Coppin State (October 23), Hampton (October 25), and UMES (October 30).

Lady Hornets Soccer
New Conference, Same Results

The lady hornets soccer are playing in their second season under new head coach Nitan Soni and in their new conference the Great West Conference. The problem is that the lady hornets offense has a tough time scoring goals and winning games. The lady hornets are getting shutout seven times by their opponents, getting outscored 35-2, and manage just two goals all season.

The Lady Hornets has got to find ways to score goals and prevent other teams to gain two or more goals. The lady hornets have whole month of October to turn this season around when they play South Carolina State (twice), Howard, St. Peter's, NJIT (twice), and Wilmington College. If they can do that they could gain momentum for the Great West Conference tournament.

Men's and Lady Hornets Cross Country
September 5 The UMES "Lid-Lifter"
Men and ladies finished 5th

September 12 The Towson Invitational
Men and ladies finished 3rd

September 19 The UD Invitational
Men and Ladies finished 4th

This was the best September for the men's and lady hornets cross country team as they finished in the top 5 in three straight meets. They have already started October by finishing in the top 5 at the their own invitational as the men finished 3rd and the ladies finished 2nd. If they finished in the top 5 at the Delaware Invitational on October 10th they could building momentum to take first place at the MEAC Championships on October 24.

Hornets Football
Everybody already knows what season the Hornets football team will progress. They have already started a season with a forfeit loss to North Carolina A&T, gave up over 350 yards against Florida A&M, then they put their in-state rival University of Delaware to the limit in a loss, and against Hampton the defense was strong by only giving up six points. The offense finished drives in the red zone for touchdowns and that's how you play Hornets football. Now October will be a interesting month when they finally return home against Bethune Cookman (October 10), then a non-conference game in the Big House of Michigan (October 17), Homecoming against Morgan State (October 24 remember the fumble in 2007?) finish off October against last year's MEAC Champion South Carolina on Halloween. I know we don't have a chance against Michigan but if we can win these conference games in October we could be in the driver's seat for a winning season.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Hornets End September with their First Win of the Season

What a brilliant Saturday night performance for the Hornets football team. The hornets build that momentum from their in-state rivalry game and defeat Hampton University 21-6 to earned their first win of the season. It was all defense for the Hornets as they intercepted three pirate passes (two by Greg Ligon and one return for a touchdown in the 4th quarter by Olusrgun Ayanbiola), blocked a field goal, and kept them out of scoring range through most of the game.

The offense in the first half was remarkable in the second quarter as the Hornets offense, led by Anthony Glaud, had two possessions in the red zone and scored two touchdowns. This was compared to September 19 were the Hornets had mad opportunities in Blue Hen territory and ended up with a touchdown and a field goal.

Also I seen a tricked play buy the Hornets punt team as they fake the punt to Tahree McQueen and went an extra eight yards for a first down to the drive going. He finished with 127 total yards of offense and earn MEAC Rookie of the Week Honors.

Hampton countered with a fake punt of their own to Isiah Thomas (no that the basketball player who used to play for the Pistons and coach the Knicks don't get it confused)and ran 55 yards for a first down.

There were three reasons on why Hampton beat themselves:

1. The kicking team was so sloppy all night long missing two field goals and a extra point.

2. Once again penalties have sunk the Pirate ship as they were flagged 14 times for 141 yards.

3. Even though the Pirates had 390 yards of total offense they were 0 for 2 in red zone scoring chances, 5 for 16 on third down conversations, and couldn't able to finish drives in Hornet territory.

The Hornets will have a big October coming up to determine if they could finish a winning season or a another dissapointing season. The test begins October 10 at home against Bethune Cookman.

Also a congratulations to punter Nick Lochner for being named MEAC Special Team Player of the Week.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Delaware State vs University of Delaware: Game 2 Football: Hornets Gained Respect but Missed Opportunities Cost the Hornets the Game

Everyone will remember that date from September 19 as the most competitive game Delaware State has ever played against the University of Delaware. The atmosphere was remarkable electric as both fans from their respective school begin kickoff.

The entire first half was a defensive struggle as the Hornets and Hens kept each other on pace. On the offensive side of the football, the Hornets had four of five tries to score in the UD territory/the red zone but end up with no points. There footballs that would've been caught by our wide receivers but end up being drop passes. Either that or Anthony Glaud kept overthrowing the football, also penalties has the kept the Hornets offense off rhythm for most of the game.

The biggest play of the first half is when the Hornets defense made a goal line stance and prevented the Blue Hens from scoring the one yard touchdown with one second left. Blue Hen fans thought it was a touchdown but it was not and Blue Hen fans were booing the refs before The Approaching Storm Marching Band begin their halftime show.

During the second half I thought the momentum will shift in the Hornets favor but wasn't the case because the Blue Hen had suddenly begin to come back to life late in the third quarter with the Blue Hens marched down the field and scoring in the red zone. Hornets tried to get the ball in the endzone where they were in the red zone but Glaud pass that was attended to a Delaware State player was intercepted and UD took over from there.

The fourth quarter really got interesting. After the Blue Hens scored some of the fans started to leave early because it look like another blow out since it was 21-3 UD. But the Hornets didn't quit, Jerome Struggs returned an interception for a touchdown and just like that we are still in business. That's all came crashing down when UD had a huge kickoff return to put themselves in good field position to score yet again until Delaware State's offense finally scored a touchdown with less than 30seconds to go.

After the game everyone talked about how the game was so different from their playoff game back in 2007 (remember 44-7 UD over DSU). Blue Hen coach K.C. Keeler was right the Hornets were better than they was two years ago when they won the MEAC Conference. The hornets gave the blue hens a run for their money but ran out gas late in the third quarter into the fourth quarter.

Give the Hornets credit for staying in the game all game even when they were down 21-3. The stats are almost even but we had the ball longer but we turned over the ball twice. The offense needs to finish drives for touchdowns if they want to have a winning season in the MEAC Conference.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Delaware State vs University of Delaware Game 1 Soccer

The Route 1 rivalry has started between the Hornets and Blue Hens. On Friday night the lady hornets was glad that they had the chance to play the lady blue hens but speed was the name of the game as UD shut out the lady hornets 7-0.

The lady hornets soccer team has been shutout for the 5th time this season.

The lady blue hens dominated the whole game by scoring 5 first half goals and 22 shots on goal.

The lady hornets has got to find a way to scored goals this season, avoid shutouts, and improve their defense because they will begin conference play next Friday against Howard University.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Lady Hornets Get Their First Win Before Taking on Their In-state Rivial

Before the Lady Hornets soccer prepared to take on the University of Delaware this Friday night, the lady hornets received their first win of the season when they defeated VMI 1-0 on Monday.

When the season started, the Lady Hornets couldn't scored not one goal as they were shutout during the first four games of the season. Delaware State were shutout 16-0 by their opponents, but all that is put to rest when Chelsea Brown scored the game winning goal in the 72nd minute to win the game.

Like coach Soni said on the website, "The positive attitude of our team really pushed us through, and it is well deserved. We now need to carry this momentum forward for Friday night against Delaware, and for the rest of the season."

Now one day before both in-state rivals battle on the gridiron, the lady hornets and the lady blue hens will duke it out on the soccer field in Newark Friday night.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Route 1 Rivalry will Highlight Delaware State and University of Delaware In Sports

The 2009-2010 sports season will be fill excitement as Delaware State will take on the University of Delaware in not only in football on September 19, but in other major sports that will sure make the rivalry very interesting.

Before the two teams tackle on the grid iron, it's ladies first as the lady hornets will take on the lady blue hens on September 18 in soccer.

Also early in the morning on September 19th the men's and lady hornets cross country teams will travel to Newark, Delaware and participate in the Blue Hen Invitational followed by the Delaware Invitational on October 10. There is no word yet if the Blue Hen's cross country teams will participate in the Hornet Invitational.

October 11th the Lady hornets Equestrian team will be in a exhibition competition against the Lady Blue Hens at Hornets ranch. Time to get on that giddy up!!!

December 1st will be a very early Christmas present for Hornets fans as the Blue Hens invade Memorial Hall. I don't know if Memorial Hall will hold a lot of Hornets/Blue Hen fans. My advice is to come very early before the game starts because that gym will get packed in a hurry.

Also in spring 2010 look for Delaware State and UD to duke it out on the diamond in baseball and softball.

Mark your calenders and plan ahead because the Route 1 Rivalry is here to stay for all sports. Why, because it is a first state tradition.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Joyner Spikes A Milestone on a Special Day

Congratulations to Cassandra Joyner on accomplishing her 1000th career kill in the Lady Hornet's victory over Norfolk State on Friday night. Even though there were a lot of college sports games being played on that special day, Friday September 11th will be the one to be remembered for Hornet fans everywhere.

Even though I wasn't there to witnessed this historic milestone but I felt her spirits everytime she plays volleyball. Plus what a better way to get your 1000th kill on your very own tournment The Hornet Invitational.

Want to know how she got to that 1000 milestone, let's go by the numbers of her Hornet career:

Freshman year 2006: 309 kills

Sophomore year 2007: 271 kills

Junior year 2008: 319 kills

Senior year 2009: 101 kills and counting

Joyner has made her mark on being a leader of the lady hornets volleyball team and hoping to add a MEAC Championship to her remarkable career.

Once again congratulations to Cassandra Joyner's 1000th carrer kill. The first ever lady hornet to accomplish 1000 kills in volleyball.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

The DSU Hornets Summer Wrap-Up

Dear Summer,

Summer 2009 was the year of making moves and starting over as we prepared for the 2009-2010 Hornets Sports season. Even though our Hornet Athletes have taken the summer break to train, take summer classes, jobs/internship, family and others, there were some summer headlines there were taken place on the campus of Delaware State University.

Lady Hornets Bowling

June 30 will be the most shocking day ever. After winning the MEAC Championship back in March and going to their first ever NCAA appearance, Kim Terrell-Kearney announced that she will be stepping down as the head coach of Lady Hornets Bowling. I was asking myself why did she step down? The answered is simple she accepted the job to work at United States of Bowling Congress in Arlington, Texas.

Kim told that it was very tough decision to leave Delaware State because of the wonderful student athletes and staff, plus she was privileged to work with the Lady Hornets for two years.

Terrell-Kearney guided the Hornets to a school-record 119 wins and first-ever appearance in the NCAA Women’s Bowling Championship Tournament this past season. The Hornets advanced to the national semifinals, two wins shy of reaching the national championship. Named the 2008-09 Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) Coach-of-the-Year, Terrell-Kearney also captured the bowling team’s first MEAC Tournament championship in March.

Kim has a very good resume as a coach and as a professional bowler. The Hornet family will miss Kim Terrell-Kearney. Is the lady hornets bowling program in trouble? We don't know but they are currently looking for a new head coach before the new season starts this winter.

Hornets Baseball

On June 10th, former Hornets pitcher Dan Perkins was selected the 27th Round draft pick by the Colorado Rockies. He was sixth Hornets player to be drafted to Major League Baseball since 1991 and the first since 2004. Welcome to the big leagues Rocky Mountian Perkins. (New nickname I made up).

Three days before the students begin their first day of classes head coach J.P. Blandin named former Delaware Blue Hen Scott Shockley as their new outfielders coach while assisting in hitting instructions with Assistant Coach Mike August. A great move for Hornets baseball.

Men's Outdoor Track & Field

Even though Alston Bolt may have dominate the summer breaking world records, the Hornets Track & Field took over the month of June. From Donte Holmes All-American recognition, advancing to the NCAA track Nationals, coach Bell's First State Track honorship, to Leslie Murray's accomplishment in the NCAA's and Nationals the men's outdoor track & field is gaining momentum for next season.

Lady Hornets Softball

Softball Jeff Savage signed Penn State transfer Janelle Lukens to compete for Lady Hornets for the 2010 softball season. She will bring a Big Ten experience and should be a team leader for the Lady Hornets. Lady Hornets is expecting to sign five new players before the upcoming season.

Lady Hornets Basketball

Head Coach Ed Davis has signed four new players to join the Lady Hornets family: Guard/Forward Crystal Pitt, forward Kianna D’Oliveira, guard Jamarra Robinson, and center Uchechi Ahaiwe. These ladies will bring a greater bench production for the lady hornets for the upcoming 2009-2010 season.

Also the new lady hornets schedule is out with 14 home games and some big non-conference games including being in L.A. for the Women of Troy Classic tournament playing USC. This will be a tough year but I think the lady hornets will pull through but they still have Hampton in their heads from the MEAC Tournament back in March.

Men's Basketball

Head coach Greg Jackson Sr. has wanted the Hornets to play the toughest non-conference games ever and this year will be no different from last year and the previous years. They will be playing 21 teams from nine different conferences. Here's some good news though the Hornets will begin the 2009-2010 season with five straight home games November 14-December 1. A lot of momentum heading towards their always brutal non-conference schedule. Mark your calenders for December 1 when the Hornets will play the Blue Hens of the University of Delaware at home. What an early Christmas present!!!

Delaware State Football

After 19 days of training camp the Hornets are ready for their first game against Joe Taylor and Florida A&M. But before the hornets prepared to look at game film they will begin the season 0-1. Why? Because of ESPN and other sports writers criticize the Hornets Football team for playing Michigan instead of the conference rival North Carolina A&T. The scheduling started back in the spring when Norfolk refuse to change the date with Delaware State and A&T didn't want to swap dates either forcing the Hornets to forfeit.

Finally we have a new Athletic Director back in April and his name is Derek Carter from Bowie State University. I wish him the best of luck on turing Athletic Department into a promising future without conflict.

Well Summer it was a great off season now the real season begins with fall sports. Until then see you again in Summer 2010 with more off season headlines.

Clarence Varnado III