Sunday, December 10, 2017

Virginia State's Cannon named Lanier Award winner

ETTRICK, Virginia -- Virginia State senior tailback Trenton Cannon was honored with the Lanier Award, given to the top Division II/III or NAIA player in the state, after leading the Trojans (10-1) to a CIAA championship and playoff appearance.

Following Meadowbrook graduate Bryant Frazier, Cannon is the second consecutive Trojan to win the Lanier Award. The award is named after Willie Lanier, who played for Maggie Walker High School, Morgan State University and the Kansas City Chiefs and who also was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

Cannon helped do the same at Virginia State on his way to the Lanier Award. He produced 245 all-purpose yards per game in carrying the Trojans to their first 10-0 start in school history.

Averaging 7.7 yards per carry, Cannon compiled 1,638 yards on the ground to lead the CIAA and scored 22 total touchdowns. He became Virginia State’s all-time leading rusher this season with 4,030 career yards.


Coach James Hill Jr. Wins 200th Career Game

MANSFIELD, Pennsylvania (12/6/17) –  On the surface, Virginia State defeated the Mountaineers of Mansfield University 52-51 tonight at Marion Decker Gymnasium. However, the victory had much more meaning than usual. When the final horn sounded, James Hill Jr. found himself the winner of his 200th career game.

Coach Hill has been at the helm of the VSU women's basketball program for the past eleven seasons. Hill currently holds a 200-125 overall coaching record. Before taking over the program at VSU, Hill served as assistant women's basketball coach at Shaw University from 2003-2006.

James Hill Jr., has elevated the women's basketball program since arriving on campus at Virginia State University in 2006. He has secured five 20 plus winning seasons since arriving at VSU, the most in VSU women's basketball school history. In 2013-14, Hill was recognized for a year of excellence where the women's basketball program held the best start to the season (11-0 record) in school history, longest winning streak (15 games), best record since 1988 (24-1), highest National Collegiate Athletic Association Ranking in School History (#10), ranked first in Historically Black Colleg53e and University out of all the NCAA Divisions, made an NCAA appearance and had the best basketball overall record (25-3) in VSU's men's and women's basketball history. Coach Hill was named the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Associations (CIAA) Coach of the Year three times and HBCU Mid-Major Coach of the Year twice.

Under Hill's leadership, the 2013-14 team were CIAA Northern Division Champions, three of his players were selected to the First Team All-Conference, and the Trojans were ranked no.1 in defense and 5th in the regional ranking. Coach Hill also received the Big House Gaines Award during the 2014-15 season. In 2015, Trojan women's basketball team claimed the CIAA Championship Title, while most recently Hill was named Coach of the Year by SportsTalk 1450 WCLM for the 2016-2017 season. Hill ensures that the team is well rounded in academic success and community outreach.

Under the leadership of James Hill Jr., The VSU Trojans finished its 2017 season with an impressive 22-8 overall record. The CIAA Co-Northern Division Champs finished the final game of the regular season (19-7, 11-5 CIAA) with a 69-50 victory over the Lady Lions of Lincoln University on the road. The Virginia State University women's basketball team secured its twentieth win of the season with an impressive 73-40 win over St. Augustine's University in the first round of the 2017 CIAA Women's Basketball Tournament at Bojangles Coliseum on Tuesday, February 21, 2017. In addition to a very impressive season the Virginia State University women's basketball team secured the 10th spot in the National Collegiate Athletic Association Division II Atlantic regional rankings.

Virginia State University Head Women's Basketball Coach was inducted into the Shaw University's Athletic Hall of Fame on Thursday, November 2, 2017. Coach Hill continues to add on to his long list of accomplishment with the start of the 2017-18 season as the Trojans remains undefeated!

Congratulations to Coach Hill on his monumental win!


History repeats itself as Delaware downs Delaware State in women's basketball

NEWARK, Delaware -- Meeting for the first time in 10 years, Delaware and Delaware State followed a familiar pattern, despite the long layover, in their women’s basketball encounter Sunday.

Delaware was dominant, putting together a 17-point first-quarter run that removed any mystery en route to an 84-49 victory in front of 1,311 at the Carpenter Center.

“That’s a good in-state win,” said first-year Delaware coach Natasha Adair.

Delaware has won all 10 meetings between the state’s lone Division I programs, and Sunday was the 25th anniversary of their first get-together on Dec. 10, 1992, in Dover.

Sophomore Samone DeFreese scored a game-high 19 points for Delaware. Nicole Enabosi’s 17 points and 11 rebounds comprised the junior’s eighth double-double this year and 29th of her career.

The Blue Hens (6-4) have won four of their last five and feel like they’ve found a groove.


Texas Southern Lady Tigers turn away Northwestern State Demons for third straight win

ALEXANDRIA, Louisiana – The Lady Tigers of Texas Southern University jumped out to an insurmountable lead in the first quarter Saturday and never looked back as claimed a 56-43 win over Northwestern State.

Joyce Kennerson maintained her place as the nation's second-leading scorer after pouring in a game-high 28 points on 7-of-14 shooting. The junior from Port Arthur drained four out of her five 3-point tries and handed out a career-best eight steals.

Kaitlyn Palmer and Catherine Okwilagwe scored 10 points apiece for the Lady Tigers (4-4), who won their third straight game, and second over a Southland Conference opponent in as many contests. Okwilagwe's 10 points marked a career high, while Palmer matched a career high with three blocked shots.

Cheyenne Brown scored 15 points to lead Northwestern State (4-4).

The Lady Tigers return to action Sunday, Dec. 17, when they host Paul Quinn College at TSU's H&PE Arena. Tipoff has moved from its original start time to 7 p.m. to accommodate a Houston Cougars men's basketball game earlier that afternoon.

The Lady Tigers needed only one quarter to seize control of the game as they outscored Northwestern State 26-9 over the first 10 minutes. Palmer's 3-pointer with 8:43 remaining in the period broke a 2-2 tie and gave TSU a lead it would not relinquish for the duration of the game.

A 13-2 TSU run between the 7:14 and 2:10 marks of the opening period gave the Lady Tigers a commanding 21-6 lead. After NSU's Jocelyn Scott knocked down a 3-pointer with 1:56 remaining to cut the deficit to 21-9, the Lady Tigers finished by scoring the final five points of the first quarter.

The Lady Demons simply had no answer for Kennerson and Palmer in the first 10 minutes, as each player scored 10 points while shooting perfect from the field. Palmer was 4-of-4 from the field, while Kennerson shot 3-of-3; both players made both of their first-quarter 3-point tries.

A defensive struggle ensued in the second period as each team managed only four points apiece while combining to shoot 3-of-27 from the field. The second period was scoreless for more than four minutes until Kennerson's layup with 5:42 remaining gave the Lady Tigers their largest lead of the game at 28-9.

Northwestern State would close the gap to 10 points in the third quarter, only to see TSU pull away. A 6-0 run in the fourth quarter pulled the Lady Demons to within eight with 5:43 left in the final period, only to see the Lady Tigers again respond with four consecutive points of their own.

• The Lady Tigers won their sixth consecutive neutral-court game dating back to the 2016 Southwestern Athletic Conference Tournament.
• Isis Lane pulled in a career-high 15 rebounds for the Lady Tigers, while guard Camille Mills hauled in 10 rebounds.
• The Lady Tigers shot 10-of-12 (83 percent) from the floor in the first period, and 10-of-39 (26 percent) for the remainder of the game.
• The win was the TSU's first-ever triumph over Northwestern State, which had won the three previous meetings between the two teams.
• The matchup marked the first time the Lady Tigers had faced Northwestern State since the 1986-87 season. The Lady Demons also swept a home-and-home series from TSU during the 1983-84 season.
• Kennerson pushed her career point total to 1,073 points. She is only 71 points away from tying Darlene Hale (1978-82) for seventh place on the TSU's all-time scoring list.
• The game was played at Alexandria's Rapides Parish Coliseum, approximately 50 miles from the Northwestern State campus, as part of the men's and women's basketball teams' CenLa Showdown. The NSU men hosted nearby Division III opponent Louisiana College.



Saturday, December 9, 2017

ASU Hornets got 'that guy' they wanted in Hill-Eley

MONTGOMERY, Alabama -- The day before Alabama State officially removed his interim tag Thursday, Donald Hill-Eley found out just how much the Hornets wanted him to stay.

“I learned that the players had got together and did a petition on my behalf, and I didn’t know about it,” Hill-Eley said.

The Hornets have the guy who brought them together after an 0-5 start and the firing of Brian Jenkins.

“He’s got everything a head coach should have,” said ASU senior left guard Edward Sanders, who is graduating Friday with a degree in criminal justice. “He’s that guy.”

Alabama State has the guy who went 5-1 as an interim with the loss coming to repeat SWAC champion Grambling. Now ASU believes it has a coach who can lead it to a conference championship sooner than later.

“It just warms your heart when you right by people and people stand up to do right by you,” Hill-Eley continued. “Those guys, I love each one of them and they love me and through that, we’ll work and do everything we can to lead this place to victories."


HBCU Football Head Coach and Conference Changes

December 9, 2017

COLLEGE                        NEW COACH          FORMER COACH
Alabama State                   Donald Hill-Eley        Brian Jenkins
Alabama A&M                                                      James Spady
Arkansas - Pine Bluff                                            Monte Coleman
Florida A&M                      Willie Simmons*         Alex Wood
Delaware State                                                       Kenny Carter                   
Hampton                             Robert Prunty            Connell Maynor
Mississippi Valley State                                        Rick Comegy
North Carolina Central      Granville Eastman$   Jerry Mack
Prairie View A&M             Bubba McDowell**     Willie Simmons 
Lincoln (Pa.)                                                          Reginald Byarse Jr. 
Edward Waters                                                      Alvin Wyatt
Virginia Union                                                       Mark James                                                                 
Cheyney University of Pennsylvania, Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC)


COLLEGES                NEW CONFERENCE         OLD CONF.

Hampton                       Big South                                 MEAC
Savannah State             SIAC                                        MEAC
Langston                        SAC                                         RRAC
Texas College                SAC                                         RRAC

*Awaiting official announcement by FAMU Administration
$ Interim for 2018

Howard defeats St. Francis-Brooklyn in overtime, 72-69

WASHINGTON, D.C.  –  Coach Ty Grace and the Howard University Women's Basketball team earned its third straight win with a 72-69 overtime victory over St. Francis-Brooklyn (SFC) inside Burr Gymnasium.

Four Bison reached double-figures, led by sophomore Ayonna Williams. The D.C. native had a game-high 19 points, five boards, and two dimes in the win.

SFC's Alex Delaney connected on two freebies and gave the Terriers a slim advantage with 3:43 remaining in the third, 47-46. HU responded and closed the period an 11-3 run to take a seven-point lead into the fourth, 57-50.

St. Francis opened the fourth with a 7-0 spurt and tied the contest after layup from Abby Anderson, 57-57. Howard regained the upper hand and held a five-point advantage with less than 90 ticks remaining. SFC battled back as Dana Direnzo scored the final five points of the period, including the layup that sent the game into overtime, 63-63.

Sophomore Jayla Myles tied the contest with a layup at the 2:13 mark in OT. Then, spilt a pair of free throws and gave the Bison its first lead in the fifth period. From then on, HU never relinquished the lead.

Myles, senior Tajzhane Dopson, and freshman Tariah Johnson each had 10 points. Sophomore Imani Bryant racked up 10 rebounds, five points, and three rejections in the victory.

St. Francis took a double-digit lead after one, 25-15. After shooting 50-percent (10-of-20) in the first period, SFC could not duplicate in the second period as they shot under 40-percent (3-of-8); thus, the Bison capitalized and scored 14 unanswered to take the lead with more than five minutes before intermission, 29-25.

SFC went 7-of-8 at the foul line and kept themselves in the game. HU took the lead late in the second, but a layup from Delaney tied the contest at intermission, 38-38.

For SFC (3-6), Jade Johnson recorded a team-best 14 points while Delaney and Direnzo combined for 23 points in a losing effort.

HU begins a three-game road trip at Cincinnati (Dec. 14). Game-time is set for 7 p.m.

For more information, visit the Bison Athletics website at