Rivalry week hectic for Hampton

Staff Writers: Roderick McLean and Nazim Trammell-Wells

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Photo Credit: Roderick McLean

From The Battle of the Bay to HU vs HU, the past week has truly been hectic for the
Hampton Pirates men’s basketball team.

During DMV week, the Pirates faced off with the University of Richmond, Howard and
Norfolk State. The team ended up going 1-2 on the week, but the atmosphere was exciting for every game.

The Pirates went into the week shorthanded as star guard Jermaine Marrow (24.9ppg) is
out four to six weeks with an apparent hand injury. With this team having seven new faces, this week forced them to find a new identity.

With a lot more ball movement and dependability on a motion offense, sophomore
forward Ben Stanley emerged as a beast. Averaging 28.6 ppg on the week, Stanley showed the promise that many of his coaches raved about before the season.

The week started with Richmond. Stanley led the Pirates with 24 points and 13 rebounds
on 10-of-14 shooting. The game was close for much of the evening until the Spiders’ Blake
Francis found his groove and ultimately led Richmond to a second-half scoring outburst fromwhich the Pirates could never recover. The Pirates lost, 80-63.

“This game was closer than it looked,” HU senior Justin Whitner said. “There was good
energy in the convocation center, and I thought we were in it until midway through the second
half.”

The Howard vs. Hampton game followed two days later. The heated rivalry met all
demands as the game went into overtime, but the Bison left Convocation Center with a 94-91
win.

Hampton’s Ben Stanley was nearly unstoppable. He led all scorers with a career-high 40
points on 15-of-19 shooting. Junior guard Davion Warren had a double-double with career highs of 17 points, 10 rebounds and six assists. Bison guard Charles Williams had 23 points and forced OT with a fading 3-point jumper. The Bison forced 16 Pirates turnovers.

Now with Hampton and Norfolk on losing streaks, The Battle of the Bay game was a
must-win game for both teams. Coming into the game the Spartans were on a six-game losing streak, while the Pirates had lost five in a row. During their most recent meeting, the Spartans defeated the Pirates 94-89 in double overtime last year in Norfolk.

This time, the Pirates started off slow out the gate as the Spartans jumped out to a 9-0
lead in the first five minutes before Stanley got the Pirates on the board. The first half was a low-scoring game. Pirates guard Dondre Griffin made a 3-pointer at the halftime buzzer as HU took the lead 22-19.

The second half had seven ties and six lead changes. Pirates forward Amir Smith got
the crowd off their seats with his posterizing dunk on Spartans forward Chris Ford. The Pirates went on a 13-5 run to close the game. Hampton defeated Norfolk 64-53 to snap its losing streak. Stanley had another double-double for the Pirates with 22 points and 10 rebounds. Smith contributed to HU’s win with 10 points and eight rebounds.

The Pirates next game will be on Dec. 18 as the team travels to face Southern Illinois.

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Photo Credit: Roderick McLean

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