Sunday, February 28, 2010

Disappointing Saturday for Hornets Basketball

On Saturday February 27, I was keeping track on the final road game of the season between the Delaware State Hornets and the Hampton Pirates. During both games there were miss opportunities, miss free throws, turnovers, and not enough rebounds.

Lets begin on the ladies side. The lady hornets once again had a bad shooting game but the good news is that the defense kept the Pirates under 50 points in a 47-41 loss.

In the first half, the lady hornets shot a dismantle 27% from the field but yet trailed by seven at halftime.

Early in the second half, the lady hornets fell in a deep hole trailing by 14 before the Lady Hornet started a furious rally scoring 14 of their 16 points before running out of gas.

The lady hornets miss key buckets and couldn't finished the rally. This lost must have frustrated the lady hornets after the game. On the flip side the lady hornets show no signs of quitting.
On the men's side, the Hornets play with no energy at all during an embarrassing 64-45 loss.

When I heard the game on the radio, the Hornets offense keep missing shots, free throws, and making a lot turnovers. Also the defense was went out of sync giving up a lot of shots so much it made head coach Greg Jackson Sr. a headache.

The Hornets offense in the first half was okay when they shot 44% but the defense gave Hampton 48%. In the second half that when things fell apart for Delaware State.

DSU made only six field goals (missing 11), five free throws (missing nine), 10 defensive rebounds, and committed 12 turnovers.

With stats like that, the Hornets were playing like a team predicting to finish ninth place in the MEAC Conference.

Still The Hornets secured for the second seed for the MEAC tournament, but they need this win to build extra momentum for the MEAC Tournament. Now the Hornets really need to beat UMES on Thursday in order to be prepared to whoever the Hornets' opponent is in the quarterfinals.

I'm sure coach Greg Jackson and the Hornets squad will be ready for Thursday and next week's MEAC Tournament.

Friday, February 26, 2010

A Look Back at the 2K10 Hornet Seniors

March 4 was Senior Night in the Hornets Nest and the Hornet men were being honored as the four seniors were playing their last home game of the season vs the University of Maryland Eastern Shore.

These four Hornet seniors played with great expectations no matter what the stats says or the record states.

So without further or do here are the Four Hornet Seniors:

Kris Douse:
During the first two seasons, I haven't seen Douse played as much basketball due to injury but from 2008-2010, his game improve to a whole new level doing the little things rebounds, jumps shots, and playing defense. Even though Douse didn't play enough minutes he has a bright future ahead and with the help of his family and friends, Kris will tell walk into a great career and telling doubters that "Douse is in the House."

Greg Smith:
Here is a another forward that also does the little things rebounds, making shots, hustle skills and many other things that help the Hornets win games and produce his presence on and off the court.

Now its time for the veterans:

Frisco Sandidge:
During the first two years of the season I didn't know much about Frisco at all. It was about Jasha Bluntt, Darrin Shine and others that won the MEAC regular season championship. Now Frisco got a taste of regular season championship experience and became the main man on the Hornets roster by making baskets in the paint and using the famous duck & spin move to put score points in the paint without even traveling. Plus he is a good mid-range jumper.

On defense he was a monster block shots, creating turnover, and his speciality drawing charges, and reaching out for the ball to knock away from opponents. This season he put his game to another level by racking up some double-doubles this season.

Marcus Neal:
Here is one of the best shooting guard on the Hornets squad and he's only 6' 5." Neal is one of the best three-point shooters behind Jasha Bluntt and Roy Bright and is a great co-captain on his team this year along with Frisco Sandidge. Marcus can also drive to the hoop and make some smooth lay ups. Sure as of late he was in a shooting slump but I will tell you this Neal is a skill shooter and his defense help the Hornets keep their opponents at bay. Rest assure Neal has a bright future and who knows Marcus might teach other future Hornet basketball players to fundamentals of the game.

So there you have it the 2K10 Hornet Seniors for men's basketball. Congratulations and good luck on your road to the future. HORNETS!!!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Marcus Oliver Saves the Hornets Sluggish Night

If it wasn't for Hornets freshman Marcus Oliver, Delaware State will have a very hard time scoring against a last place team like Coppin State.

Don't get me wrong the Hornets defense did it's job in Monday's 59-43 victory, but their offensive game was so slow even time almost stood still.

Marcus Neal's shots were not falling again for the second straight game and DSU missed 10 of their first 11 shots from the field including missing their 11 three point attempts.

Talk about a tough way to rebound from a lost to Morgan State last Wednesday.

However, in the final five minutes of the first half the Hornets went on a 18-5 run to secure a halftime lead. Marcus Oliver had 10 points in the first half to lead all Hornet scores.

When the second half started, it was all about Marcus Oliver.

The MEAC Rookie of the Week dominated the second half by scoring most of his points in the paint. Whether it was a down low post, getting under the basket against two Coppin State defenders, putting back shots, and making the most ridiculous acrobatic layup on two flat feet to woo the crowd, Marcus Oliver was everywhere on Monday night.

Oliver was everywhere on defense as well blocking five shots, forcing turnovers, and rebounding the basketball.

Marcus Oliver save the Hornets offense Monday night by scoring a career high of 23 points. Entering Monday's game, Oliver was only averaging 4.5 points per game.

Hornets Head Coach Greg Jackson, Sr. told reporters that during the first 15 minutes of the game the Hornets were sluggish on offense and they can't afford to do that during the final two games of the regular season before going to the MEAC Tournament in March.

Jackson also praise Oliver for his performance by not only Monday night's game but also the entire season. The only problem is Oliver didn't get enough minutes to play. Monday night he play for 31 minutes and hopefully he will continue to play more minutes as the Hornets play Hampton on Saturday and UMES on March 4 before getting ready for the MEAC Tournament March 8.

Marcus Oliver proved Monday night that he is one of the best versatile weapons on Hornets team.

Even though he is a 18 year-old freshman, Oliver will continue to grow more on his role heading into next season as the strongest players in the MEAC Conference.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Hornets Still Can't Get the Morgan State Monkey Off their Backs

During the Hornets 68-65 lost at the hand of first place Morgan State, Delaware State made three huge mistakes that cost them the game.

Mistake #1: Bad Shooting
I didn't like way the Hornets were shooting the basketball. Especially missing shots in the first half where they shot 33% from the field. In the second half they improve a little bit by shooting 40%. Other than that their shot selection was disappointing. Marcus Neal's shoots were cold like they were on thin ice where he only six for 15 from the field. During the first five minutes of the first half the hornets missed their first six shots from their field. Every time the shot clock was running down they had to hurry up and make quick shots. For most of the game it didn't work as well they had thought. Also the Hornets three point shooting were also at it struggling point making only two of their nine three pointers. In the second half, their three point shooting improve a lot especially late in the game. The Hornets were in a losing battle in points in the paint where they were outscored 39-18 in the paint. However on the last possession of the game two of their best three point shooters were defended by the Bears defense so Marcus Oliver was third option to shoot the game tying shot with six seconds left. The result was heartbreaking miss and a heart breaking lost. If I were coach Greg Jackson Sr., I would have Jay Threatt, Brandon Baylor, or Trevor Welcher take the game tying shot.

Mistake #2: Not Enough Rebounds
The Hornets were outrebounded all night long as Morgan State's big men dominated the boards 41-25 including 14 on the offensive glass. The Hornets kept tipping the ball trying to get the rebound. Instead Morgan was more hungry than the Hornets player. Hornets next time rebound with two hands.

Mistake #3: Silly Fouls
Everytime the Hornets were on defense the whistles kept blowing all over the place. Some were heat check chippy fouls and some were called that shouldn't been called. In the second half there more fouls and more free throws committed by both teams. Morgan State 13 fouls and Delaware State 11 fouls.

The crowd was hype for a while but Morgan State try to take the crowd out of the game for most of the game until the 8 mintue mark of the second half when things started to heat up.

The Hornets will learn from this game build momentum and secrue the second seed for the MEAC Tournament. If these two teams meet again in the semi finals or the championship game, rest assure the Hornets will be ready for Morgan State and the results will be very different.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Hornets Build Momentum For 1st Place Morgan State

In the Hornets locker room Head Coach Greg Jackson, Sr. held a motto as motivation stating Delaware State will finished 9th in the MEAC Conference standings.

So far the Hornets men's basketball game has won six of their last seven games heading into Wednesday's showdown with 1st place Morgan State here at home.

On the week of February 1st the Hornets practice nothing but defense. It didn't work vs North Carolina A&T but it worked the last three games. Come to think of it the defense has been been great ever since conference the defense was up to their standards.

The defense continued during their wins vs Bethune-Cookman and Florida A&M when they started their four game home stead.

During the Hornets 67-50 win over Bethune-Cookman, they held the Wildcats to 42 percent from the field with their pressure defense. That defense intensity continued into their next game vs Florida A&M. Even though DSU didn't make a field goal in the last 2 minutes of the game the Hornets defense picked up big time especially when the Hornets forced FAMU to turned the ball on their last possession.

The Hornets went from zone defense to man-to-man defense in the last 14.2 seconds and it worked to perfection.

Now the Hornets will take on the highest scoring team in the MEAC Conference Morgan State. If the Hornets can contain Reggie Holmes and the rest of the Bears who knows they might have a blue print of what to expect in the MEAC Tournament. That will be music to coach Jackson's ears.

On Monday Morgan State suffered their first MEAC lost in nearly a year when South Carolina State's hot shooting contain the MEAC Champion Bears in a tough defeat.

Hopefully the Hornets can do something similar just like what South Carolina State did back on Monday.

Also the Hornets offense must continue to hit quality shots when it counts. Even though they only average 57 points a game they had been scoring in the 60s the last two games. The last time the hornets scored in the 70s was December 1, 2009 vs University and January 16 vs Bethune-Cookman.

If the Hornets can score in the 50s and 60s first before Morgan State do then the game will be theirs for the taking.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Hornets In-Door Track & Field Finished Strong

Even though the men's and lady hornets indoor track & field team didn't win the MEAC Championship they end up in the top 10 to finished the season.

On the ladies side, it was Nykeisha Sewell who gave made the human highlight reel of the MEAC Indoor Track and Field Championships. She earned All-MEAC Third Team honors by collecting 3,331 points in the pentathlon, following by boosting a first place performance in the pentathlon long jump with a top leap of 5.45 meters, securing third place in the high jump, topping out at 1.65 meters, and fourth in the regular long jump with a top effort of 5.56 meters.

Wow that's a accomplishment for a individual Hornet athlete like Nykeshia Sewell. We will get to see more of Sewell in the spring when the Hornets begin outdoor track & field season.
On the men's side, once again Donte Holmes proved to everyone in the MEAC Conference that he is the best indoor runner the world has ever seen. Holmes finished 1st in the indoor 800 meters with a time of 1:52.51.

Also Holmes helped lead the Hornets to the championship in the 1600-meter relay. He teamed up with Thibou, Leslie Murray and Kevaughn Laviea to post a winning time of 3:16.84.

Holmes is one of the best runners around and come outdoor track & field season. Holmes and the Hornets will continue to dominated the track & field finished in the top 10 and maybe the MEAC Championship.