By Mark F. Gray
AFRO Staff Writer

A dose of home cooking was just what the doctor ordered for Bowie State as the frigid holiday weekend tipped off a two-game basketball homestand against the Shaw Bears after their tough road trip to the Carolinas.  The Bulldogs swept the men’s and women’s games before the ice and snow rolled in.

Coach Darrell Brooks tweaked the lineup and made the commitment to his newly minted zone defense and the result was a 96-67 thrashing of the Bears.  

The Bears, who traveled from Raleigh, NC on the day of the game, never seemed to find any rhythm and the Bulldogs took advantage of arguably the CIAA’s most prolific three-point shooting offense that went as cold as it was outdoors.

Bowie State women’s and men’s basketball teams won their home games over the MLK weekend. (Courtesy Photo)

Shaw’s offense started the game shooting 38 percent from beyond the three-point arc after hoisting 485 long range attempts for the season.  Brooks expressed concern about the Bears effectiveness from beyond the perimeter as his big men, who are normally accustomed to playing in the paint, are now being asked to guard farther away from the basket.  

BSU’s attention to detail was on point as their tight defensive rotations squashed Shaw’s offense, while they found a rhythm after two straight losses at Fayetteville State and Claflin.  The Bears made only 23 of their 68 field goal attempts and were held to just 5 of 27 three point attempts.  

Meanwhile, Saiquan Jamison led a double figure quintet of Bulldogs in scoring with 20 points and grabbed a team-high nine rebounds while setting the tone with a fierce interior presence. Rinardo Perry and Kani Coles, a new insertion to the lineup, scored 15 points each.  Cameron Hayes, the team’s leading scorer, emerged from a shooting slump to score 14 points and junior Justin Route added an explosive 11 featuring a highlight reel alley oop finish in the first half.

“Today’s game was probably our best start to finish game of the season,” said Bowie State Head Coach Darrell Brooks. “Our guys locked into the scouting report, did a good job talking and we were really aggressive offensively.”

Bowie State started the game with a 21-5 run heading into the first media timeout. It expanded into a 38-12 lead with 5:30 remaining before halftime which essentially put the game out of reach.        .

The BSU women seem to have hit the annual dog days of midseason. After winning their first 14 games of the season two road losses were the first signs of vulnerability. Cosmetically it wasn’t beautiful, but the Lady Bulldogs grinded their way to a 42-33 win.

Senior Dynaisha Christian led BSU with 15 points and a career-high 19 rebounds. Junior Talanya Hutton added 12 points and grabbed eight  boards. After a pedestrian 19-15 lead to end the first half, the Bulldogs re-established control after the intermission.

The Bulldogs utilized a third-quarter break to capture the victory. Despite the Bulldogs shooting only 16-of-58 from the field, they pulled away by making 10 of their 11 free throws in the game. Defensively, BSU forced 13 turnovers while holding Shaw to 29.5 percent shooting on 13-of-44 FG for the game.