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Monday, February 20, 2012

Winning at the Right Time; Refuse to Quit

Even though the Hornets eight game winning streak came to an end on Saturday night at the hands of Gardner-Webb, the Delaware State men's basketball team is maturing and hitting all the right notes.

After suffering back to back heartbreaking defeats at the hands of University of Maryland Eastern Shore and Bethune-Cookman at home back in January, DSU were saying to themselves enough is enough.

DSU broke a eight game losing streak by beating Florida A&M at home by 14 on January 23rd, and since then the wins kept piling up:

-defeated North Carolina Central by 6 in their only meeting of the season

-held North Carolina A&T to one field goal over the final 13 minutes to win by 13 points in front a tough crowd of The Dawg Pound

-Hornets made a big statement at home vs 1st place Norfolk State without starters Tahj Tate and Kendall Gray due to injuries by winning by 17 points and kept MEAC pre-season player of the year Kyle O'Quinn in check

-DSU made another big statement by defeating the MEAC Tournament champion Hampton in a rivalry game building momentum for their five game road trip

The road trip was full of comebacks, defense, and fantastic finishes at the buzzer:

-Down 12 points to Coppin State with 4:57 left in the 2nd half, Delaware State went on a furious rally, by going a 13-3 run including a poster dunk by Tahj Tate and a game winning three point play (layup & free throw) by Marcus Oliver to complete the comeback leaving the Golden Eagle crowd stunned

-Down 11 points to Morgan State with under 10 minutes left DSU went on a 12-2 run to cut the lead the lead to one point. Then Marcus Oliver delivers again with the game winning tip shot at the buzzer leaving Bears fans crowd stunned

-Norfolk State was en route to winning the game at home but the Hornets stay in the game throughout the 2nd half. In the final seconds, Tyshawn Bell game winning three point shot was misfired until Tate's game tying put back forced overtime. During that overtime period, DSU outscored Norfolk State 14-4 to win the game by 10 points.

Coach Greg Jackson Sr. and his coaching staff is proud of his for their maturely and their defensive pressure since January. Still the Hornets have a long way to go in the regular season and heading into the MEAC Tournament come March 6th. The Hornets are playing with passion, pride, and giving MEAC teams a fight on every given night with chemistry.

Delaware State really miss Kendall Gray due to a knee injury and hoping he will be back for the MEAC Tournament. In the meantime Delaware State needs to fix some things as they start a new winning streak, start the game strong and finish strong, make your free throws down the stretch, and rebound, rebound, rebound.

Also DSU's main guys of Jay Threatt, Casey Walker, Oliver, Tate, James Marcellus, and Tyshawn Bell were playing a lot of minutes during their winning streak. That can only mean one thing, the bench production needs to step up in a huge because if not they will be in a lot of trouble.