BY ANDREAS BUTLER
Cold shooting, missed free throws and not rebounding doomed Bethune-Cookman University last week in a 67-51 loss to Youngstown State University.
Youngstown State (7-5) dominated the boards. The Penguins outrebounded the Wildcats 50-32 including holding a 31-11 advantage in the category at halftime.
“We played soft. I told our guys that. I can’t sugarcoat it. We didn’t compete at a high level to win. You can’t get outrebounded like that and expect to win,” said B-CU Coach Gravelle Craig.
The Ohio team showed plenty of patience when running its offensive and defensive sets.
“They are a veteran team that has been together for a few years. They have good chemistry and play well together,” Craig remarked.
Bethune-Cookman (5-9) shot 36 percent from the field, went 2-for-13 from three-point range and made only five-of-13 free throws.
Alex Smith (13 points, 10 rebounds, four blocks) and Adrien Coleman (17 points, eight rebounds) played well for B-CU.
“Alex is improving. He just needs to keep working and moving forward,” stated Craig.
The Penguins had four players score in double figures led by Kendrick Perry (15 points, eight rebounds, seven assists) and Bobby Hain (14 points, seven rebounds).
Damien Eargle (13 points, 11 rebounds) and Blake Allen (12 points, 10 rebounds) also posted double-doubles for Youngstown. Eargle also blocked four shots.
The Penguins led by as many as 16 points in both halves. They built comfortable 33-21 halftime lead fueled by 10-0 and 7-0 runs.
B-CU battled back to get within 48-43 after a lay up from Malik Jackson with 9:50 to play.
Youngstown went on to outscore B-CU 19-8 the rest of the way.
The Wildcats won’t play again until Jan. 7 when the travel to Baton Rouge to play Louisiana State University (LSU).
“We will look at some things and make the changes that we need. We will continue to work hard and get prepared for conference play,” responded Craig.
Basketball game notes
Alex Smith posted a double-double for the second consecutive game for B-CU. He also matched his season high in blocks (four).
Kevin Dukes (923) is closing in on 1,000 career points. The last Wildcat to do so was C.J. Reed in 2010.
Youngstown plays in the Horizon League, which also has Valparaiso as a member.
Valparaiso has beaten both B-CU and Youngstown this season.
Youngstown is coached by legendary coach Jerry Slocumb, who has 662 career victories. He is 39th all-time and fifth amongst active coaches in career wins.
Ricky Johnson made both of B-CU’s three pointers in the game.
B-CU shot a season low 35.5 percent from the field.
Lady Wildcats notch two wins
B-CU improved to .500 on the season by picking up two wins at the Hatter Classic at Stetson University in DeLand Dec. 18-19.
The Lady Wildcats defeated University of North Carolina (UNC) Asheville 74-57 and Georgia Southern 59-48.
Four Wildcats scored in double figures against UNC Asheville led by Chastity Taylor (15 points) and Kayla Crawford (14 points, eight rebounds).
Terrenisha Hollis added 15 points and Amanda Hairston 12 points for B-CU.
Shaykeia Coyler had 13 points and Hollis 12 for the Lady Wildcats against GSU.
B-CU (5-5) will return to action on Dec. 30 when the Wildcats host Holy Cross.
Football: Hackney, Richardson named All-Americans
Sophomores Terrance Hackney and LaBrandon Richardson were named to the BoxToRow.com All-American football team.
Hackney, an offensive lineman, helped the Wildcats rack up 4,665 yards of total offense, including 2,928 on the ground.
It was the third All-American honor for Hackney this postseason. He was also named to the Sports Network FCS All-American third team offense and Beyond Sports Network FCS All-American third team offense.
Richardson, a defensive end, led the MEAC in sacks with 8.5. He also had 53 tackles and a 44-yard fumble return touchdown.
Teammates juniors running back Isidore Jackson (1,069 rushing yards, 12 total TDs) and linebacker Jarkevis Fields (103 total tackles) received honorable mention.