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Photo by Donald Watkins.
Photo by Donald Watkins.

RALEIGH, N.C. – The Shaw University women's basketball team turned in its biggest win of the season Thursday night with a 61-53 upset over regional-ranked Lincoln (Pa.) University in a non-conference contest in front of packed Spaulding Gymnasium.


The victory is the Lady Bears second-straight on its home court floor as Shaw improves to 6-8 on the season. SU shot 43-percent from the field, including 7-of-15 from the 3-point line (47-percent) while going to the line 23 times, sinking 16 free throws out-rebounding the Lady Lions 42-36.


Junior forward Diamonique Kennedy (Beggs, OK) led all scorers with 23 points and eight rebounds, she was 8-8 from the charity stripe and 3-3 from the 3-point line while shooting 6-of-9 from the field. Senior Dejoria "DJ" Howard (Orangeburg, SC) finished with 16 points and nine rebounds to aid the double figure scoring for Shaw.


Falling behind 10-4 with 4:36 left in the opening quarter, neither teams scored again until Kennedy drained a 3-pointer with 20 seconds left to pull the Lady Bears within 10-7 at the end of the first quarter.


The Lions grew a double digit lead in the second quarter on an 8-0 run but two freebies from Kennedy cut Shaw's deficit to single digits. The Lady Bears pulled within one point twice ignited by another 3-pointer from Kennedy with 1:04 left in the first half before junior guard Ariana Fleming (Newark, DE) capitalized on 1-of-2 free throws to tie the contest at 25-even at halftime.


Both teams scored 14-points apiece in the third quarter as the score became tied again for the sixth time at 39-39 at the end of the period. However, in the fourth stanza, the game remained close throughout the quarter.


Two lead changes later, Shaw took a one-point edge on a jumper from Kennedy before Howard netted a 3-pointer to put the Lady Bears ahead 51-47 with 3:10 left in regulation. LUPA closed the gap to one point capped off by a 3-pointer at the 1:36 mark but Shaw would not relinquish a lead of less than two points for the remainder of the way.


The Lady Lions fall to 13-3 overall after tonight's loss. LUPA was held to just 29-percent shooting from the field as the Lady Bears held the CIAA's top scorer, Kwanza Murray to five points. Kenzie Spencer led the Lady Lions in scoring with 16 points while Bryanna Brown added 15 points, six rebounds and four assists.


Shaw will return to action on Saturday, Jan. 11 at Fayetteville State University for a CIAA Southern Division contest at 2 p.m.


For the most up-to-date information on Shaw athletics and its 13 varsity sport teams, please visit