FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. – Despite a knotted first quarter, the Shaw University women's basketball team was held to just two points in the second quarter as the Lady Bears found themselves trailing by as many as 30-points before rallying back to come up short 68-55 to Fayetteville State University at the Felton J. Capel Arena Saturday afternoon in Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA) Southern Division action.
The loss dips the Lady Bears to 6-9 overall, 2-5 CIAA action and 2-2 in the South while Fayetteville State improves to 8-7 on the year, 6-2 in the conference and remains undefeated in the division at 4-0.
Shaw was led by senior guard Dejoria "DJ" Howard (Orangeburg, SC) with 17 points and seven rebounds while redshirt freshman guard Sydni Callis (Maricopa, AZ) chipped in a season-high 12 points, eight rebounds and three assists. Senior guard Victoria Swanson (Monmouth, OR) added 11 points and three rebounds as junior forward Diamonique Kennedy (Beggs, OK) aided 10 points, three assists and three rebounds.
The Lady Bears took a 15-8 lead in the opening quarter but a series of turnovers from Shaw led to Fayetteville State scoring seven unanswered points to knot the game at 15-even at the end of the period.
A 15-foot jumper from Howard gave Shaw a two-point lead to start the second stanza but the Lady Bears wouldn't
score again for the remainder of the frame as FSU grew a 38-17 lead on a 23-0 run before halftime. Shaw shot only 21-percent from the field in the first half while Fayetteville State was 50-percent from the field, including 4-of-10 from the 3-point line.
Shaw finally scored its first basket since 9:50 of the second quarter in the third quarter on a jumper from Howard but Fayetteville State still led 46-19 after scoring eight-straight at the 6:56 mark. The Lady Bears trailed by as many as 30-points before pulling within 54-37 at the conclusion.
The Lady Bears tried to creep back into the game, cutting the deficit to 11 points capped off by a back-to-back 3-pointers from Callis but that would be the closest Shaw would get for the remainder of the contest before falling.
Shantel Bennett paced the Lady Broncos with 16 points while Chantel Williams and Katisha Hyman contributed 15 and 13 points. London Thompson recorded the only double-double of the contest with 12 points and 10 rebounds while Aminata Johnson posted 10 points and nine rebounds off the bench.
The Lady Bears will return to action on Wednesday, Jan. 15 as Shaw hosts Livingstone College for 90's Night. Tip-off is scheduled for 8 p.m. inside of historic C.C. Spaulding Gymnasium.
For the most up-to-date information on Shaw athletics and its 13 varsity sport teams, please visit www.shawbears.com.