Aniylah Bryant and Imani Elliott combined to score 39 points in the Fayetteville State Broncos’ 65-61 win against the Winston-Salem Rams (10-7 overall, 6-3 CIAA) on the road Saturday.
The Broncos (11-6, 7-2) had two players score in double figures, led by Bryant, who had 22 points and six steals. Elliott added 17 points off of the bench and Keayna McLaughlin added eight points and nine rebounds. The win propels FSU to the lead spot of the CIAA Southern Division ahead of WSSU.
“I thought we started the game pretty well,” said Head Coach Serena King-Coleman. “The pressure got to us a little bit and we were lagging but then defensively, we ended the game well. We had a big play from Imani [Elliott] off the bench and Aniylah Bryant was just huge for us offensively and defensively. I thought we played hard and I am really proud of them today.”
Bryant scored half of her points in the first half and had three steals.
“Aniylah was the one to keep us in the game in the first half. She was pretty much the only one scoring. In the second half, her defense was the thing that propelled us and led to some easy baskets. Imani, off the bench in the second half, hit huge threes for us when we were in scoring lulls, and then we were able to finish off with free throws.”
Amaya Tucker led the Ram effort with 19 points, six rebounds, and four steals. Kennedi Simmons scored 13 points and Valencia Carroll added ten.
Fayetteville State out-rebounded Winston-Salem 31-30 in Saturday’s game, led by McLaughlin’s nine boards. FSU led with 11 second-chance points to the Rams’ four.
Fayetteville State forced 20 Winston-Salem turnovers. The Broncos turned those takeaways into 20 points on the other end of the floor. Bryant’s six steals led the way for Fayetteville State.
Fayetteville State struggled out of the gate, falling behind 17-10 at the end of the first quarter.
Fayetteville State then started off the second quarter by going on a 9-0 run, highlighted by a bucket from McLaughlin, to take a 19-17 lead. The Rams then came roaring back to take a 33-27 lead heading into halftime.
Winston-Salem continued to increase its lead after halftime, building a 45-36 advantage before Fayetteville State went on an 11-0 run, punctuated by a three from Elliott, to grab a 47-45 lead with 33 seconds to go in the third.
Fayetteville State knocked down three three-pointers in the quarter to score nine of its 20 total points.
Winston-Salem proceeded to take a 58-54 lead before Fayetteville State went on an 8-0 run to seize a 62-58 lead with 35 seconds to go in the contest.
The Broncos held onto that lead for the rest of the game for the 65-61 win. Fayetteville State took advantage of four Winston-Salem turnovers in the quarter, scoring six points off of those turnovers.
Courtesy: Fayetteville State Athletics