Why the Aggies will Top the Eagles

The Aggies could end their regular season with a strong win against N.C. Central, if they play just as they did in the first matchup.

The Men’s basketball team is coming off of a 62-52 lost against Bethune-Cookman earlier this week. Bethune-Cookman shot 58 percent in the second half to keep the advantage over the Aggies.

If the Aggies can remain tight on defense against the Eagles, then the score just might turn out in favor of the home team. On the positive side, four Aggies scored in double figures, and if they can bring that to Corbett Sports Center this week, then they will have no problem keeping the lead over the Eagles.

Beckford recorded his first double double in 16 games as he finished with 18 points and 10 rebounds against the wildcats. Point guard Ahmad Abdullah had a career game with 21 points and no turnovers earlier this season in the game against the Eagles.

Turnovers can be a weakness for the Aggies, but if they continue to avoid them this week, then it can contribute to an Aggie lead. Beckford’s double-double with Abdullah’s career high and no turnovers could also be a strong force to clip the Eagles wings.

Earlier this season, both North Carolina teams missed 3-pointers, giving the Aggies a chance to win the game with 27 seconds on the clock, but the Eagles’ defense forced the Aggies point guard Sam Hunt into a tough situation.

Hunt missed his 3-point attempt to send the game into overtime, but if the Aggies could be more consistent in certain situations, then they could take advantage of Eagle mistakes and avoid overtime.

Two minutes forward Ed Egharevba made a 3-pointer to break the tie.

With 1:44 left to play, guard Jeremiah Ingram cut the Aggies’ lead after scoring two points, but the Aggies need to learn to play harder defense in these situations.

However, a great play was executed by the Aggies when the Eagles double-teamed Bruce Beckford. Egharevba stepped in and slashed to the basket and became wide open from the wing. Beckford spotted him just in time to assist him for an easy layup, giving the Aggies the lead.

Then, Egharevba took advantage of a loose ball on the Eagles’ next possession to clinch the Aggies’ 67- 63 win over the Eagles. If the Aggies can take advantage of the ball this week, then they will be sure to take a lead over the Eagles.

If Beckford can make more isolation plays, then it could be a big help for the Aggies, and if the Aggies can continue to take advantage of the Eagles’ double team, then it could bring an Aggie victory. “Ede did just that and made me look like a genius tonight,” said Head Coach Jay Joyner after the game on the road against the Eagles.

Earlier this season, the arch-rival faceoff with N.C. Central also marked the fi rst time that the Aggies had beaten the Eagles in a MEAC regular-season game, since the Eagles joined the MEAC in the 2011-12 season. The Aggies ended their road-losing streak after going into overtime against archrival N.C. Central.

This win ended a 15-away game, losing streak that began on Jan. 31, 2015. The Aggies have beaten the Eagles once this season and have the potential to pull it off again.

  • Alexis Wainwright – Sports Editor