Through the first four games, Morgan State senior guard DeKeisha Mathis is having her best season yet as a Lady Bear. The 5-foot-6-inches-tall Mathis scored a career-high 20 points on 7-of-15 shooting, including four three-pointers to lead visiting Morgan State to a 54-52 non-conference win over Bucknell in the first-ever meeting between the two programs on Nov. 22 at the Sojka Pavilion in Lewisburg, Pa. It was the third consecutive game that Mathis has knocked down a career-tying four three-pointers.

Following her performance that night, Mathis now has a season-high 13 three-pointers and has scored a team-leading 51 points, both personal-bests in just four games.

Prior to this season her best year came as a sophomore during the 2009-10 campaign when she knocked down a season-best 11 three-pointers and scored 49 points in 25 games played.

Mathis began last season scoring a then career-high 14 points on 4-for-6 shooting from three-point range in the season-opening win at Southern Illinois-Edwardsville. As her playing time began to decrease, Mathis later left the team.

A native of St. Louis, Mo., Mathis rejoined the team this past fall and has contributed in a major way. She picked up right where she left off in Sunday’s loss at Saint Bonaventure and the game prior at George Washington, draining three’s.

It was only fitting that Mathis, who wears jersey No. 23, began the game with a trey at the 19:37 mark, just 23 second into the contest. She then followed up a Bucknell jumper with her second three-pointer, giving the Lady Bears a 6-2 lead, as they would never trail in the game.

The Bison (1-4), who entered the contest connecting on just 3-of-28 from three-point range, went 0-for-11 on the night. Morgan State shot 5-for-20 from three-point range. The guests also converted 13-of-17 (76 percent) from the charity stripe, while Bucknell was 4-for-6 (66 percent).

Morgan State turned the ball over 13 times, but its defense forced 21 Bucknell turnovers and recorded 13 steals, five by Carrington, while Mathis recorded four steals. The Lady Bears were however out-rebounded for the fourth straight game as Bucknell held a 51-36 rebounding advantage.

Bucknell was led by Shelby Romine’s 13 points, eight rebounds and six assists performance. Zehner, who scored 20 points or more in the Bison’s previous two games, was held to nine points and nine turnovers. Zehner did lead the team in rebounds with a game-high 13, while Mgbada added 11 rebounds.

Morgan State will be off until Thursday, Dec. 1, when they visit Cincinnati in a non-conference game at 7 p.m.


Kevin Paige

Special to the AFRO