Hawks find shooting touch, bury Eagles 84-73
Jan. 22, 2018

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The University of Maryland Eastern Shore got a monster game from freshman Bairesha Gill-Miles (Lexington, Kentucky) who poured in a career-high 20 points, grabbed 10 rebounds and dished out four assists as the Hawks pulled away from visiting North Carolina Central in the second half for the 84-73 victory.

It was a good win for us, Hawks head coach Fred Batchelor said. I thought it was a tough one. They shot 78 percent from 3 in the first half and they made six 3s in the first quarter. We had to overcome that and we were still up one at the half.

The Hawks (5-14, 2-5 MEAC) also got 14 points and eight boards and three assists from Keyera Eaton (Winston-Salem, North Carolina), who has started the last two games at the three position for the Hawks.

It helps when you have a couple plays made by a couple of kids, Batchelor said. I thought Buns (Gill-Miles) played a great game and made some really big plays for us and I thought Keyera Eaton showed up tonight in a big way.

The Shore’s 84 points was its season high against a Division I opponent and 19 assists tied the mark set in a home victory against University of Maryland, Baltimore County earlier this year. Eight different players had at least one assist for Eastern Shore.

“We actually saw (open) people, and when the help came over we didn’t run through it and pick up the charge like we did the last couple games,” Batchelor said. “We actually made the next play and hopefully that is the sign of good things to come and better decision making.”

Eastern Shore hadn’t had more than 65 points in any of the last seven games and the team hit that by the end of the third quarter. The Hawks outrebounded the Eagles 48-34 — including 25 offensive rebounds, which led to 27 second-chance points — and won the battle in the paint 32-20.

The Hawks bench outscored Central’s 27-4.

The defense also played a big role as the Hawks forced 21 turnovers and picked up five steals. But some of the best work on the night was done by senior guard Ra’Jean Martin (Jacksonville, Florida) who used every inch of her 5-foot-5 to slow Eagles guard Kieche White.

White poured in 16 points in the first quarter, but was held to 12 the rest of the game.

“Ra’Jean did a great job,” Bathcelor said. “No one wants to play against Ra’Jean. I wouldn’t want to. She’s a little pistol. She’s tough. She’s physical and she never goes away. She’s relentless and I thought it was a good math up for her.”

Jordyn Smith (Durham, North Carolina) chipped in seven points and eight rebounds, while Martin and Ciani Byrom (Winston-Salem, North Carolina) had nine points apiece.

The Hawks will next host Howard University on Jan. 27 at 2 p.m. when they try to win two in a row for the first time this season.

“It would be nice to finish layups better and shoot better form the free throw line,” Batchelor said. “I think we have to do things that don’t beat ourselves. If we can do that, we can play with the teams in our league.”

For more information on Eastern Shore Athletics visit http://www.easternshorehawks.com/.



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