Category Archives: FAMU Basketball

Sports Brief: Preview Florida A&M vs Delaware State

Katherine Broomfield, Correspondent (@KatBroomFS on Twitter) 

On Saturday, the Florida A&M  men’s basketball team got off to a good start en route to a  71-62 victory over Howard University, completing a season sweep of the home-and-home series this year. The Rattlers are hoping to do the same against Delaware State (7-18, 4-6 MEAC) on Monday night in Al Lawson Multipurpose Center.

FAMU (6-16, 4-5 MEAC) defeated the Hornets 81-68 back in Delaware on Jan. 28. Junior guard and forward for the Hornets, Dana Raysor, led his team with a total of 23 points. Freshman Kobe Gantz, along with sophomores Devin Morgan and Demola Onifade, each had a total of five rebounds for DSU.

Juniors Desmond Williams and Derrick Dandridge were the Rattlers leading scorers, both putting up 17 points each. Dandridge also led the team with nine rebounds.

Students with a valid FAMU ID will be granted admission to the game. Tip off is at 8 p.m.

Sports Brief: Florida A&M versus Delaware State

Calvin Sykes, Correspondent (@CSykesSportsU on Twitter)
After Saturday’s win,  the Florida A&M women’s basketball team extended their current winning streak to four games.  The win lifted them from 10th place in Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) standings to a sixth place tie in the standings with seven games left.
The Rattlers (7-15, 5-4 MEAC) host Delaware State today in the Al Lawson Muti-Purpose Center at 6 p.m. In the last meeting between the two teams, the Rattlers defeated the Hornets 65-56.
“I think last game against Delaware State was exciting, and they are a pretty decent team,” said head coach LeDawn Gibson said. “When the score got away, they did some things and got back in the game”.
The Lady Hornets are 7-16 overall, but are ranked second to last in the MEAC standings. Free admission will be granted to anyone with a valid FAMU ID.

Hot shooting boost Rattlers over Bison

Katherine Broomfield, Correspondent (@KatBroomFS on Twitter)

Howard’s struggles with offense in the first half gave Florida A&M an early advantage in securing a 71-62 victory Saturday night.

FAMU (5-16, 3-5MEAC) took advantage of Howard’s (5-17, 2-5MEAC) lack of shooting in the first half. Howard’s field goal percentage was only 33.3, compared to FAMU’s 52.2 percentage.

The Rattlers have had struggles with offense during the season so far, but were able to showcase in this match up their capabilities of putting up buckets.

“It’s very encouraging. It’s one of the things that coach always emphasizes,”  forward Desmond Williams said. “I think we [are] just taking more shots, taking better shots, getting the best shot is one of the things we most look for. That’s one of the things that’s really helping our percentages do a little bit higher.” 

Calvin Sykes

FAMU shot 49 percent from the floor in the game and 46.7 percent from the three-point line. Williams led the team with 20 points and seven rebounds.

The Rattlers last match against the Bison was Jan. 4, where they snapped a 10-game losing streak when they defeated Howard 78-66.

“It’s always good to come out on the winning end,” FAMU head coach Byron Samuels said. “I knew Howard was going to come back out and fight and do what they are good at doing.”

The second half became crucial for the Rattlers because the Bison improved their shooting to 51.7 percent. The defense did not get set in good until the second half for Howard.

“In the second half they drove it hard to the rim, they weren’t making jump shots and they just decided to drive it in,” Samuels said. “We got about eight to ten points in the second half before their defense got set. And we want to run, we want to play fast, and there are teams that try to slow us down, especially in conference season.”

The top scorers for Howard was senior, Damion Collins, and junior, James Miller. Both Collins and Miller put up 14 points for the Bison.

The Bison have yet to win a conference game at home this season but has won two of three on the road. FAMU is scheduled to face Delaware State Feb. 6 in the Al Lawson Multi-Purpose Center at 8 p.m.


Rattlers close game in the final minutes

Calvin Sykes, Correspondent (@CSykesSportsU on Twitter)



Shalaunda Burney- Robinson scored 15 points and added six rebounds to lead Florida A&M past Sydni Johnson and the Howard Bison 55-51 Saturday afternoon in the Al Lawson Multi-Purpose.

“I just play game and there’s so much intensity. I just want to win so much that it urges,” Burney-Robinson said.  “If you want to win you’ll show that you want to win.

Florida A&M ( 7-15, 5-4 MEAC) had four players finish with six points: Alicia McCray, Shakerrya Morrison, Victoria Nguyen,  and Ny’Asia Davis.

Johnson scored 14 points for the Bison (10-10 , 6-2 MEAC) on 16-of-17 shooting with four steals and a rebound.

FAMU shot 34.5 percent (19-55) from the field including 16 of 23 from the free throw line. Howard shot 34.5 percent (19-55) and also shot made 10 free throws.

Both teams finished with 25 turnovers. Te’Shya Heslip, a redshirt senior guard for the Bison, committed the most turnovers in the game with eight.  FAMU head coach LeDawn Gibson said turnovers have abeen an issue this season.

“It’s been a disease for us all year. It is great to have 25 turnovers and still win because we did have some positives,” Gibson said. “Some of them were unforced and being too unselfish with the ball. We just have to keep working on it because it has been an epidemic for us all year.”

The Rattlers trailed by as many as 12 points at halftime before Davis cut the lead with three layups in the opening minutes of the third quarter. The team managed to cut the lead down to one before taking over the game on the inside.

“The plan was to get the ball into the paint,” Gibson said. “They play a wide 2-3 zone defense and 1-2-2 trap defense and the middle was open. The thing was to get the ball in the middle to 4 or 5.”

The Rattlers finished with a 5-0 run to win the game. FAMU will face Delaware State on Monday in the Al Lawson Multi-Purpose Center. Tip-off will be at 6 p.m.


Sports Brief: FAMU Women’s Basketball

Calvin Sykes, Correspondent (@CSykesSportsU on Twitter)

The Florida A&M women’s basketball team (6-15, 4-4 MEAC) host Howard University (10-9, (6-1 MEAC) today in the  Al Lawson Muti-purpose Center at 4 p.m.

In the last meeting between the two teams, the Rattlers fell short to the Bison 72-48. The leading scorer in the game was Erin Floyd for the Bison with 21 points.

Bison are 10- 9 overall, but first place in the MEAC standings. Free admission will be granted to anyone with a valid FAMU ID as part of the organgeout game promotion.




Lady Rattlers “steal” game from Hawks

Amari Godwin, Correspondent (@AmariGodwinFS on Twitter)

The Florida A&M women basketball team (4-15, 2-4 MEAC) overcame a slow start against Maryland Eastern Shore (8-8, 2-3) on Monday in the Al Lawson Multipurpose Center. The Lady Rattlers forced 17 turnovers to defeat the Lady Hawks 59-49. 

Shakerrya Morrison led the team with 9 rebounds on a night where FAMU grabbed 45 boards as a team. Shalaunda Burney-Robinson, a 6’4 Sophomore for FAMU, used her height to her team’s advantage in the second half as she came in with energy and good defense to make sure her team did not fall behind. Burney-Robinson’s aggressiveness in the third and fourth quarters helped the Rattlers stay in the lead throughout the rest of the game as she put up 21 points and seven rebounds. 

“Out there I feel eager to compete because I know how much time we have on this team and as soon as everybody reverses that, everybody can see exactly what we have. Tonight, we showed a little bit of it, but we got have more. I just feel like we have a great talented team and we can continue to be as great,” Burney-Robinson said. 

The Lady Rattlers struggled on the offensive end, only shooting 27.5%. 

“It’s something we’re going to have to keep working on. I think they rushed a lot of lay-ups but we’re going to keep taking our time and keep going over it in practice,” FAMU head coach LeDawn Gibson said. 

Their strength on the defensive end made up for the lack of offense, with the team forcing 17 turnovers against the Hawks, whereas Maryland only forced 5.

“I loved it. I loved the effort. I loved the team effort,” Gibson said. “They talked more defense, I think that made a made a difference too. Games before this I felt like we were very mute on defense and we’ve been working on talking, talking, talking.” 

The Lady Rattlers will next play on Saturday at 2 p.m. in the Al Lawson Center when they take on conference foe Delaware State.

Defensive woes sink Rattlers

Katherine Broomfield, Correspondent (@KatBroomFS on Twitter)

Florida A&M’s lack of defense plagued the Rattlers in their 86-79 loss to Maryland-Eastern Shore on Monday in the Al Lawson Jr. Multipurpose Center.  The Rattlers inability to stop the Hawks at the three-point line early contributed to nine made shots from beyond the arc.

MDES only made seven three-pointers in the first half, but attempted almost as many outside shots as FAMU had total field goal attempts in the half.

“We had some chances, missed a couple of layups, and certainly didn’t shoot free-throws well again tonight,” FAMU coach Byron Samuels said. “We just couldn’t get out of our own way.”

FAMU switched to man-to-man defensive to slow down the threes in the second half. The Rattlers shot 33.3 percent compared to the Hawks 44.4. In the second half, the percentages were much closer: MDES 45.7 percent and FAMU 45.8 percent.

“When you’re struggling, you got to find a way to make simple plays and make tough plays, but we just didn’t do that enough. Eastern Shore is a good team,” Samuels said. “They exploited some areas where we struggled.”

“We just didn’t play as well as we were capable of playing. It’s frustrating, but we got a lot of basketball left, ten conference games left and we just got to find a way to get it done,” said Samuels.

FAMU made a run late in the second half, two late turnovers halted the comeback bid. 

“I think that when it’s time to step up, we could have helped ourselves early on, starting off a little bit better in the first half,” Justin Ravenel said. “So I knew coming into the second half shots had to go in, and just be aggressive and make sure that every time a shot goes up it goes in every time, but unfortunately all of them don’t go in.”

Desmond Williams, who had spent a lot of efforts on the defensive and offensive end was the Rattlers leading scorer and rebounder.  Williams had a total of 19 points and seven rebounds.

“As we can see, we can come back. We just have to get over that hump. It’s just a matter of continually to play hard every possession., taking no plays off, and listening to each other,” Williams said.

The Hawks leading scorer was Bakari Copeland, with a total of 25 points. The leading rebounder for the team was Derrico Peck, with seven rebounds in total.

The Hawks defeated Bethune-Cookman 82-79 on Saturday. This match up with FAMU sealed a perfect two-game Florida swing.


Sports Brief: Florida A&M preview vs Maryland-Eastern Shore

Katherine Broomfield, Correspondent (@KatBroomFS on Twitter)

Katherine Broomfield | Franchise Sports Tallahassee


The Florida A&M women’s basketball (3-15, 1-4 MEAC)  and men’s basketball (4-14, 2-3 MEAC) teams will host a double header against Maryland-Eastern Shore today in Al Lawson. The women’s game will begin at 6 p.m. and following after at 8 p.m. the men’s game will take place.

Last season, the women’s team  fell short to the Hawks 61-47. The leading scorer for the Lady Rattlers was Olivia Antilla with 14 points. The men’s team went home with an 81-80 victory in overtime. Craig Bowman was the leading scorer, putting up 25 points for the Rattlers.

The Maryland-Eastern Shore women are 8-7 overall and the men are 6-13  overall.

The game is being held on faculty and staff appreciation night. Free admission will be granted to all faculty and staff members with a valid FAMU ID.

Lady Rattlers overcome slow start to beat Morgan State

Stanley Brooks, Correspondent (@StanleyBrooksFS on Twitter)

Tallahassee, FLA. ( – With the Florida A&M University women’s basketball team starting a series of conference games in the Mid-Eastern Atlantic Conference (MEAC), the Lady Rattlers were able to get their first conference win with a 51-48 victory over the Morgan State Bears.

The Lady Rattlers (3-13, 1- 2 MEAC) struggled in the in the beginning of the first quarter both offensively and defensively. They weren’t able to get their first point of the game until almost four minutes into the game after the Lady Bears (2-14, 0- 3 MEAC) had already built a seven-point lead. The Lady Rattlers came within one point before the end of the first quarter and continued to trail for most of the game.

In the second half, the Lady Rattlers stepped up their play by playing press defense and causing turnovers. The offensive game for the Lady Rattlers started to heat up when senior guard Cedrika Sweeting made consecutive threes to give FAMU their first tie of the game in the third quarter. Head coach LeDawn Gibson commented on her shot after the game.

“Just for her to have that confidence to let it fly, boy I feel like flying with it,” Gibson said.

The team continued to make things difficult for the Lady Bears especially with junior center Shalaunda Burney-Robinson in the post outrebounding her opponents. Burney-Robinson finished with 12 total rebounds, eight of those being defensive, and made both of her free throws to give the Lady Rattlers their first lead in the fourth quarter.

The Lady Rattlers went on a 6-0 after taking the lead in the fourth quarter that lasted up until the last 25 seconds of the game. It helped seal the victory and prevented the Lady Bears from making a comeback.

Coach Gibson said she was proud of how the team stepped upped their play to get the win.

“I think we are a great defensive team when we communicate,” Gibson said. “This is a very talented team and at any given night anybody can step up.”

Sweeting, with her two momentum changing threes, was one of those players. Sweeting said Gibson’s halftime message ignited her.

“What coach said at halftime really got me going,” Sweeting said. “By them giving me the ball, I knew they had confidence in me so I had to make something happen for the win.”

With a win to start conference play, the Lady Rattlers are ready to take on Savannah State University and Bethune-Cookman University in their upcoming games. Gibson was happy to talk about these series of conference games.

“We go to Savannah on Saturday then we come back to play that other school in Florida so we’re going to be ready.”

The Lady Rattlers will take on the Lady Tigers at 4 p.m. before facing off against rival Bethune-Cookman on Monday at home.

Florida A&M’s struggles in the paint lead to sixth straight loss

Stanley Brooks, Correspondent (@StanleyBrooksFS)

In an exhibition game of teams from the Southwestern Athletic Conference vs. the Mid-Atlantic Conference, the Southern University Jaguars (3-3) defeated the Rattlers of Florida A&M University (2-7) 83-71.


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