BY ANDREAS BUTLER
Bethune-Cookman topped Albany State University in both the men and women’s standings in windy conditions at the B-CU Beach Invitational at Seabreeze High last week.
“Winning always boosts your confidence. Running in front of the home crowd was also good. It’s always a plus for our athletes when their peers come out to support them. That’s a benefit,” said Donald Cooper, B-CU’s head track and field coach.
First-place finishers for the Wildcats on the men’s team were Christopher Jackson in the 200m dash, Stephon Pamilton in the 400m dash, Akeem Barthol in the pole vault, La’Quan Howard in the triple jump and 4×100 meter relay.
B-CU women had eight victories led by Shakira Garner, who won the 100m and 200m dash. She also was on the winning 4x100m (Garner, Keyona Thomas, Raven Thomas, Alphadellia Harris) relay team. Kadian Dunkley took the 1500m and 5000m runs, LaShondra Wilborn the 400m dash and was on the winning 4×400 (Wilborn, Raven Thomas, Erika Graham, Averial Rouse) meter relay team. Sasha Smallwood won the pole vault.
Baseball: B-CU sweeps FAMU
The Wildcats continued their dominance of the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference by sweeping archrival Florida A&M.
FAMU (6-36, 4-12) took two of three games from B-CU in Tallahassee earlier this season.
“The difference is this time we had a better approach at the plate. We were more disciplined and hit our pitches,” responded Jason Beverlin, B-CU’s head baseball coach.
Bethune-Cookman (23-14, 12-3) won the series finale 11-1 on Senior Day on Sunday as they honored Alejandro Sanchez, Jairo Acevedo, Brashad Johnson, Nick Johnson and Ryan Gonzalez.
“We definitely was more aggressive and kept the pressure on them this series,” commented Designated hitter Anthony Stokes.
A seven-run second inning gave B-CU a controlling 7-1 lead as Carlos Delgado had an RBI single, Anthony Stokes hit a three-run homerun, David Lee a two-run single, and Brandon Turner walked in a run.
Spruce Creek alum Scott Garner (2-3) got the win while Lee finished 2-for-4 with two RBIs, Brashard Johnson 2-for-3, Jordan Taylor 2-for-3 with two runs and Nick Johnson scored three runs for the Wildcats.
The previous day, the Wildcats ripped the Rattlers taking a double-header.
Gonzalez (6-0) pitched a complete game shutout for the B-CU in a 10-0 game one victory.
Josh Johnson went 4-for-5, Lee 3-for-4 with two RBIs and three runs scored, Brashard Johnson 3-for-5, Nick Johnson 2-for-5 with two RBIs and Stokes hit a two-run homerun for B-CU.
The Wildcats won the second game as Ali Simpson (1-0) got the win while Stokes was 3-for-3 with two RBIs, including a two-run homerun Nick Johnson and Lee each had two hits.
B-CU outscored FAMU 29-2, Stokes hit three homeruns with eight RBIs and Josh Johnson went 6-for-13 with two runs and two RBIs in the series.
“I just tried to keep it simple and stick with my approach,” responded Stokes.
“Both Anthony and Josh had unbelievable weekends,” added Beverlin.
Game on ESPNU
The Wildcats hosted the University of South Florida on Tuesday. They travel to Durham, N.C., to face North Carolina Central University (10-24, 6-6) on April 21 and 22.
B-CU will play 15 of its final 17 games on the road before the MEAC Tournament in Norfolk, Va., from May 16-20.
“We just have to be consistent and stay focused mentally no matter who we play rather it Miami or anyone in our conference in regards to school size and program prestige,” stated Beverlin.
B-CU’s April 27 game against North Carolina A&T State University (14-23, 6-5) will be aired live nationally on ESPNU at noon. The two teams sit on top on the MEAC South division.
“Playing North Carolina A&T on ESPNU is a great opportunity to showcase our program on a national level. It helps us reach recruits as well as our players’ families that may not get a chance to see us play. We are extremely excited that we were chosen for the telecast,” commented Beverlin.
Football: Spring game
Bethune-Cookman’s spring football game takes place Saturday, April 21 at Municipal Stadium at 4 p.m.
Tickets are $5 for general admission and $1 for students with a B-CU student ID.
Fans got to draft players for the Maroon and Gold teams for the game online at the school’s athletic website.
Other festivities include the annual Pros vs. Joe’s celebrity basketball game featuring NFL All-Pro defensive back Nick Collins of the Green Bay Packers and All Pro kick returner Eric Weems of the Chicago Bears on Friday, April 20, beginning 4:30 p.m. at Moore Gymnasium on the B-CU campus.
Alumni band and football members will play during the halftime and alumni band members and the 14k dancers will perform.
Basketball: Frank wins steals title
Demetria Frank finished her career as B-CU’s all-time leader in steals (422) and free throws (572). She is also second all-time in scoring (1,567 points).
The redshirt senior guard can now add statistical champion to her resume as she finished the season as the steals leader for NCAA Division I women’s basketball.
Frank averaged 4.25 steals in 2011-12 while Quinnapec’s Felicia Barron averaged 4.16.
Both Frank and B-CU will be awarded plaques for the achievement at a later date.
She joins Rosina Pearson (18.5 rebounds per game in 1985) and Gwen Davis (111 3-pointers in 1988) as B-CU’s only national statistics champions.
Frank has a 4.0 GPA and has earned her bachelor’s degree and is pursuing a master’s degree.