Hampton 53

(17-13, 13-5 MEAC)

Delaware State 55

(19-13, 14-4 MEAC)

12:00 PM ET, March 12, 2005

Richmond Coliseum, Richmond, Virginia

1 2 T
HAMP 25 2853
DSU 21 3455

Top Performers

Hampton: B. Brown 13 Pts, 14 Reb, 1 Ast, 1 Blk

Delaware St: T. Hunter 15 Pts, 4 Reb, 2 Ast, 1 Stl, 4 Blk

Hornets beat Hampton for third time

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) -- Aaron Williams didn't have much time to think when the ball came to him, and he hoped a prayer would work.

Williams' 10-footer with 2 seconds left Saturday lifted Delaware State to a 55-53 victory against Hampton for the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference championship, and gave the Hornets their first NCAA Tournament berth.

"We said a prayer right before we went back out," a smiling Williams said, speaking of a timeout huddle with 15 seconds remaining.

After he dribbled most of the clock down, a teammate's 3-pointer from the corner was off the mark and the ball got batted around underneath by both teams before finally coming to Williams, all alone in the lane.

"It got tipped to me," he said. "Time was running out. Anybody in my position would have done the same thing -- get the ball and shoot it."

When it swished through, and when the Pirates' attempt at a length-of-the-court play in the final 1.6 seconds failed, Delaware State (19-13) was on the way to its first NCAA Tournament in any sport.

"We made history twice," forward Jahsha Bluntt said. "We won the conference and we won the MEAC championship. I count that as a joy."

The top-seeded Hornets trailed for most of the game, but Bluntt tied the game at 53 on a 3-pointer with 1:08 left, and Williams' shot gave them their third victory this season against Hampton (17-13).

"It was the same, identical shot we lost on at their place," Pirates coach Bobby Collins said, recalling Bluntt's buzzer beater on Jan. 22.

Bluntt scored 11 of his 16 points in the second half for Delaware State, and Terrance Hunter finished with 15, also getting 11 in the half.

"Jahsha stepped up in the latter parts of the game and made some tough shots for us," Hornets coach Greg Jackson said after Bluntt had three 3s in the last 7:07. "Sometimes you live by the jumper or you die by it."

After going 1-for-11 from 3-point range in the first half, Delaware State made 6 of 14 in the final 20 minutes. Bluntt was 4-for-7 on 3s.

"He doesn't need very much room to get open," Collins said. "It doesn't matter who is on him -- he can get his shot off."

Bruce Brown had 13 points and 14 rebounds for the Pirates, but missed a putback from in front of the basket in the final minute. Devin Green led Hampton with 14 points, but had just two in the second half.

The Hornets were playing in their first championship game since 1993, while Hampton was seeking its third league championship in five years.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


Team Stat Comparison

Points 53 55
FG Made-Attempted 20-46 (.435) 19-53 (.358)
3P Made-Attempted 7-12 (.583) 7-25 (.280)
FT Made-Attempted 6-11 (.545) 10-18 (.556)
Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 16 (0/0) 12 (0/0)
Largest Lead 13 3

2004-05 Season

Jan 22, 2005 @DSU 66, HAMP 64Recap
Feb 28, 2005 DSU 64, @HAMP 54Recap
» Mar 12, 2005 @DSU 55, HAMP 53Recap