Jay Copeland's double-double lifts NCCU past NJIT
Three N.C. Central players scored in double figures during a 71-55 win over New Jersey Institute of Technology in McDougald-McLendon Gymnasium on Thursday.
“Dang, man!” NCCU’s Emanuel Chapman said.
Chapman had nine points, just one shy of scoring in double figures. But that’s not why he was mad.
“I had four assists,” said Chapman, concerned that he didn’t go a good job of getting his teammates involved offensively.
Chapman has more than 500 career assists and is NCCU’s all-time leader in that category. He’s not known as a scorer but shot the ball at a 100-percent clip against NJIT.
A senior out of Raleigh’s Enloe High School, Chapman was 3 of 3 from the field, which included a 3-pointer, against NJIT. That’s not a lot of shots, but Chapman was efficient.
“I’m picking my spots,” Chapman said.
NCCU forward Jay Copeland (13 points, 10 rebounds) had his second double-double in a row. He said not only has NCCU coach LeVelle Moton challenged him to be more aggressive, but the redshirt-junior transfer from Ball State also said his mom has been on his case.
“She thinks she’s a coach,” Copeland said. “So she’s saying, ‘Baby, you’ve gotta do this, you’ve gotta do that.’”
NCCU got 14 points from Jordan Parks, and Jeremy Ingram, who hasn’t been shooting the ball well, had 10.
“It’s a balanced attack. I think people are getting more familiar with the system,” Moton said about his team. “They’re unselfish, and they’re sharing the basketball.”
The Eagles were having fun, making extra passes for better shots.
On one play, NCCU forward Karamo Jawara (6-8, 220) looked like a ballerina in the paint with some toe tapping that got him free for a basket.
“I played soccer for, like, 10 years, so that’s where I got my footwork from,” Jawara said.
Jawara, who had six points, five rebounds and four assists, also looked like a traffic cop out there on the court telling his teammates where they needed to be. Moton calls him the point guard for NCCU’s big men.
NJIT coach Jim Engles said Moton’s squad is poised and physical and skilled.
“I’ve watched almost all their games, and I don’t’ want to put the hex on them, but they’re a really good team,” Engles said. “They just have a tremendous chemistry, and, obviously, they have a lot of talent, and every single person does what they do really well.
“I thought they made us look really young.”
NJIT’s Damon Lynn (19 points) was the only Highlander in double figures. He entered the game ranked third in the nation for made 3-pointers (62 of 164).
Lynn was 4 of 8 from behind the arc in the first half and 0 of 2 from that distance in the second half, because Ingram put some tight defense on him during the final 20 minutes, Moton said.
|NC CENTRAL 71, NJIT 55|
Percentages: FG .372, FT .696.
3-Point Goals: 7-18, .389 (Lynn 4-10, Ukawuba 2-2, Duncan 1-3, Mayfield 0-1, Sydnor 0-2).
Team Rebounds: 3.
Blocked Shots: 3 (Holiday 2, Nweke).
Turnovers: 22 (Howard 7, Lynn 4, Smith 2, Nweke 2, Willis 2, Mayfield 2, Ukawuba, Duncan).
Steals: 6 (Howard 2, Ukawuba, Lynn, Willis, Duncan).
Technical Fouls: None.
Percentages: FG .458, FT .737.
3-Point Goals: 3-18, .167 (Chapman 1-1, Holmes 1-2, Moody 1-3, Eaton 0-1, Jawara 0-1, Crawford II 0-1, Galaya 0-2, Anyaorah 0-2, Ingram 0-2, Groves 0-3).
Team Rebounds: 6.
Blocked Shots: 3 (Copeland, Parks, Jawara).
Turnovers: 12 (Anyaorah 3, Copeland 3, Chapman 3, Houston 2, Ingram).
Steals: 14 (Parks 3, Anyaorah 2, Jawara 2, Holmes 2, Chapman 2, Galaya, Groves, Copeland).
Technical Fouls: None.
Officials_Julius Terrell, George Jackson, Ken Pike.