UMES stuns 5-time defending champion Hampton in MEAC quarterfinals

NORFOLK (WAVY) – Jessica Long led her team with 11 points, which included a game-winning jump shot from about 15 feet away with just over a second remaining in regulation, and Maryland-Eastern Shore stunned Hampton 52-50 in the quarterfinal round of the MEAC Tournament.

The top-seed Lady Pirates (18-12, 14-2), who’ve won the last five straight MEAC Tournament titles, exit the tournament and will miss out on the NCAA Tournament for the first time in six years. “If you play long enough, it’s going to happen eventually,” said Hampton Head Coach David Six.

With :04 seconds left on the clock, and the game tied 50-50, UMES maintained possession on the sideline around mid-court. Long caught the ball on the run and took two dribbles before letting go what would be the game-winning bucket. “I saw the (Long) cut towards me and I saw that I was on her,” said Kenia Cole.

“I want to say number 20 hit me with a screen, but I didn’t see the screen, didn’t hear a screen call and she just knocked it down. I didn’t see her take a jump shot the whole game, but she made it when it counted. Congrats to her,” she said.

“Six championships in six years is a lot. Obviously we wanted to get six in six years, but we didn’t play well. We didn’t have our A-game, they did and they won. Congratulations to them,” he said.

Hampton guard Malia Tate-DeFreitas, the conference Player of the Year, was held to just nine points. As a team, Hampton shot just 36 percent for the game and only made it to the free throw line six times. “We weren’t really aggressive on offense and we only got the line six times,” said Cole

With the loss, the Lady Pirates now wait to see what seed they will get in the Women’s National Invitational Tournament, which starts March 18.

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