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Stuart Todd

Shaw women confident as CIAA schedule hits stretch run

Posted February 5, 2013

— As the buzzer sounded on Jan. 30 at Spaulding Gymnasium, the Shaw women’s basketball team went into celebration mode. Kearah Jeffreys had just sunk the game-winning three-pointer from the corner for the No. 9 ranked Bears to escape an upset at the hands of Fayetteville State.

Or did she?

Just moments after the postgame rave began, it ended, and a disbelieving silence filled the building. The officials waved off the basket. Jeffreys had stepped out of bounds prior to the shot.

In heartbreaking fashion, the Lady Bears (18-3, 9-2 CIAA) fell to 3-1 in the CIAA Southern Division.

It was, however, a mere hiccup for the defending Division II National Champions. Led by head coach Jacques Curtis and eight seniors, Shaw still controls their own destiny to win the CIAA and get back to the NCAA Tournament as a top-tier threat.

“We have the chemistry but sometimes it doesn’t show,” said senior Sequoyah Griffin. “We have to just keep getting better day-by-day and we’ll be fine.”

Shaw's Griffin confident in team's postseason chances Shaw's Griffin confident in team's postseason chances

The Shaw women are led by four scorers averaging double digits. Ronika Ransford’s 15.9 points per game top the team and are fourth best in the CIAA. Taylor Dalrymple is averaging 15.2 points and 8.6 rebounds per game to place her fifth and second in the respective stats in the conference.

With leadership, experience and talent in the forefront of conversation, confidence in the Shaw camp is also high.

“We’re going to win it again, we just need to finish gelling,” Griffin said.

While the women’s team is soaring, the men’s team at Shaw is a little more grounded as the conference tournament nears.

The Bears are 7-4 in the CIAA, but own just one Southern Division win. Add to that, they lost to cross-town rival St. Augustine’s by 12 points on their home court following a night in which they shot just 30 percent from the floor.

Bright spot Karron Johnson ranks fifth in the CIAA in scoring (17.4ppg) and second in the conference in rebounding (8.0 rpg).

Shaw has five conference games remaining with another shot at St. Aug. on Feb. 16.

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