East Carolina women’s basketball team (2-2, 0-0 American Athletic Conference) won 75-58 on Nov. 18 against Hampton University (1-3, 0-0 Big South Conference) in its second home game of the season at Williams Arena in Minges Coliseum.
The arena was full of elementary to middle school aged students from the surrounding Pitt County area due to it being Education Day. The young crowd cheered loudly with excitement as the Pirates took the court.
To start off the first quarter, ECU won the tip-off but failed to score. Hampton then became the first to score for the game when freshman guard Amyah Reaves made a jumper. After that, Hampton continued to take the lead when sophomore guard Madison Buford made two free throws and red shirt freshman forward Alayna Townsell made a jumper.
The Pirates put some points on the board when junior guard Danae McNeal made two free throws, which brought the score to 6-2, Hampton. Junior guard Taniyah Thompson and junior forward Xianna Joseph also scored for the Purple and Gold, both with two pointers along with graduate student guard Da’Ja Green with the first three-point jumper of the game. The first quarter ended with a 13-13 tie.
“It makes it fun to play. I was talking to my teammates about it earlier in the season, it kind of feels like I'm back in highschool just playing with my girls and I think that is a very huge piece, especially when things aren't going your way or say, I’m a point guard so a lot of times you got to get into your post players, get into your guards because you want more out of them but they know it's coming from a genuine heart because they know I care about them,” Green said.
In the second quarter, ECU broke the tie when freshman forward Iycez Adams scored two free throws. The score then tied again when Buford, assisted by Reaves, scored Hampton. Both teams continued to score throughout the second quarter but the Purple and Gold broke away after senior forward Tiara Chambers scored a two-pointer.
With less than five minutes left in the second quarter, sophomore guard Alexsia Rose, sophomore guard Synia Johnson, Chambers and graduate student guard Raven Johnson all scored for ECU. Hampton was also able to put some points on the board when Reaves made a free throw while freshman guard Victoria Mason made two free throws. The second quarter ended with a score of 30-24, ECU.
To start off the third quarter, ECU continued its lead when Chambers made a layup and Thompson made a three-pointer. After Buford scored two free throws, the Purple and Gold responded when Thompson made a three-pointer, which took the score to 40-27 for ECU.
“It's really big, like Coach Kim said, our motto is “family, academics, basketball” and it's not just a phrase, we live by it, it's our culture, so the coaches really make us feel at home,” Thompson said.
As the third quarter went on, both teams continued to put points on the board. For ECU, Green made a three-point jumper, while for HU, freshman guard, who also plays as a forward, Jermany Mapp made a three-pointer as well. With less than a minute to go in the third, the Pirates continued to keep their lead when sophomore guard Synia Johnson stole the ball and scored a three-pointer. The final score for the third quarter was 58-42, Purple and Gold.
To start the fourth quarter, Buford scored a two-point jumper for the Hampton Pirates. Also to score for Hampton were Townsell with a three-pointer and Reaves with a free throw. The Pirates maintained the lead as the quarter went on. For the Pirates, Johnson made a three-pointer, Josephs made a layup and Thompson sank a three-point jumper.
With less than a minute left in the final quarter, there was a foul on ECU’s sophomore guard/foreward Morgan Moseley. This allowed freshman guard Victoria Davis to make two free throws. There was also a foul on Hampton’s sophomore forward Nylah Young, which allowed Chambers to score. The game ended with a ECU Pirate win, 75-58.
The ECU women’s basketball team will play again on Nov. 21 at the LJVM Coliseum against the Wake Forest Demon Deacons (3-0, 0-0 Atlantic Coast Conference). Tip-off is at 6 p.m.