BALTIMORE, Md.—Hampton University's Keiara Avant shot 14-of-19 from the field and the senior forward scored 22 of’ her career- and game-high 32 points in the second half to lead the visiting Hampton Lady Pirates to an 81-60 victory over Morgan State in a Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) contest at Hill Field House on Feb. 2.
The Lady Bears stayed close with the three-time defending champion Lady Pirates in the first half. Morgan State held a 13-9 lead, before Hampton used a 9-0 run to reclaim the lead 18-13. Morgan State pulled within a one point deficit after six straight points by sophomore guard Chyress Lockhart. Lockhart later would drain a three-pointer to cut the Hampton lead to 31-28 at the intermission.
But Hampton (17-5, 8-0 MEAC) blew open a 54-50 game with 7:39 remaining in the game, by using a 21-8 run over the next four minutes and 10 seconds to take a 75-58 cushion with 3:29 left in the contest.
The Lady Pirates shot 34-of-71 (47.9 percent) from the floor, including 7-of-19 (36.8 percent) from three-point range. Morgan State shot 32 percent (20-of-61) for the game and was 2-for-12 (16.7 percent) from three-point range.
Avant also pulled down a game-high 13 rebounds to record a double-double. Junior forward Alyssa Bennett also tallied a double-double with 16 points and 12 rebounds, while senior guard Olivia Allen finished with 15 points for the Lady Pirates, who extended their winning streak to eight straight games.
Morgan State (6-14, 3-5 MEAC) was led by Lockhart, who came off the bench to score a game-high 16 points. Sophomore guard Tracey Carrington and senior guard Bianca Jarrett each added 13 points.
Morgan State connected on 18-of-28 from the charity stripe, while the Lady Pirates went 6-of-10 from the free throw line. Hampton held a 49-37 rebounding advantage over the Lady Bears.
The Lady Bears bench outscored Hampton, 25-6, but the guests outscored Morgan State 40-22 in points in the paint.
The Lady Bears will return to action on Feb. 4 when they play host to the Spartans of Norfolk State. Tip-off is slated for 5:30 p.m. at Hill Field House. Norfolk State defeated Morgan State in the first meeting, 81-68 on Jan. 21 in Norfolk, Va. The Spartans will be coming off a 79-49 loss at Coppin State on Saturday.
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