The men’s and women’s MEAC basketball tournament took place two weeks ago to see who would get the opportunity to represent one of the two HBCU conferences in the NCAA Tournament this March.
The men’s championship game was played between Morgan State and Norfolk State University. The game was slow-paced, with there being less than 20 total fast break points between the two teams. Backed by 17 points from Joe Bryant, Norfolk State were the victors, punching their ticket to the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2012. The Spartans went on to get a victory in the “first four” round of the tournament against Appalachian State University, but they were later eliminated by #1 seeded Gonzaga.
The women’s championship game was quite the contest between Howard and North Carolina A&T. Howard seemed to be pulling away after the 1st quarter, with North Carolina A&T quickly closing the deficit and eventually taking the lead in the second quarter. The entire second half was a back and forth, including 5 ties and 5 lead changes. The game came down to the wire with Deja Winters of A&T hitting the game-winning 3 point shot, The Lady Aggies were not able to obtain their first tournament victory in school history, however, falling short to the North Carolina State Wolfpack despite a strong 1st half.
When asked about how it feels to have the MEAC properly represented in the NCAA Tournament, Commissioner Dr. Dennis Thomas said “Both Norfolk State and North Carolina A&T State are to be commended for being the outstanding universities they are and for the superb job they do in producing highly talented students, both academically and athletically.”