Tag Archive | "Sterling Smith"

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MEAC season continues for Coppin Saturday against UMES

Posted on 07 February 2014 by WNST Staff

BALTIMORE – Sterling Smith’s most memorable moment of the season occurred on Sunday, Nov. 10 in front of family and friends. They watched as Smith dropped 21 points under the bright lights to help Coppin State beat Oregon State, 78-73, in one of the biggest wins in school history.

Since Smith exudes a laid-back California-cool personality off the court, he was pretty nonchalant following the victory. That demeanor is a stark contrast to the angry pit-bull like attitude and competitive fierceness he displays during games and the sheer intensity he shows in practice.

Last week, Smith displayed a different emotion, rage. He wasn’t excited about his career-high 24-point performance because it came in an overtime loss to Hampton, 79-76. Smith loves his family and winning.

While he looks forward to seeing his family and spending time with them, Smith is not exactly counting down the days to his next scheduled visit to the West Coast them during spring break. That’s because the Chino (Calif.) native hopes his plans include practicing for a NCAA tournament game that week.

With seven regular games remaining for Coppin State beginning Saturday at Maryland-Eastern Shore (4:00 p.m.), Smith knows there’s plenty of work to be done to help create a special memory that would surpass the thrill of the Oregon State game. Then his family can come see him play in an NCAA tournament game.

“It was cool to play in front of a lot of family members and friends when we played California and Oregon State,” Smith said. “I usually get home about twice a year. Once in the summer and during spring break. Hopefully, we’re playing during that week. I was able to spend time with my family when we went out to California and that was cool. The Oregon State game really boosted my confidence. To have such a big game against a big school really helped me out a lot.”

Smith’s game has been hot recently. He has developed into a rebounding machine. Only a sophomore, the 6 foot, 4 inch Smith has the potential to do some good things by the time he finishes his Coppin State career. Smith has grabbed 26 rebounds combined over the Eagles’ last three games, including nine each against Hampton and Delaware State.

Smith is the Eagles version of a Swiss-army knife because he’s third on the team in scoring (11.4 points per game), and rebounding (4.3 per game). Smith is third on the team in assists with 43 and blocked shots with six. He also leads the Eagles in steals with 29 and is second with 37 made 3-pointers. He does it all. Lately, he’s been focusing on rebounding because that’s what has been needed. For the season, Smith has scored in double figures 12 times and made at least one 3-pointer in 17 games.

“I always had a knack for the ball,” Smith said. “Coach (Ron “Fang” Mitchell) had a team meeting to let us know that rebounding wasn’t our strong suit, so he told us that we had to pick it up especially among the starters. I kind of took it upon myself to do that and get a lot of more boards. I feel like if I am not scoring that I can be more effective in other ways. I can always help the team out.”

His maturity, confidence and leadership have been a huge help to the Eagles this season. Smith is a smooth shooter when he’s in rhythm and has his legs under him. Smith prepped for a larger role this season by spending plenty of time in the gym with senior guard Andre Armstrong. They were like a new and improved version of Woody Harrelson and Wesley Snipes from “White Men Can’t Jump” as they drove up and down the East Coast playing in as many pick-up games as possible.

Armstrong and Smith are a pair of lethal wing players that can shoot holes through any zone defense in the world when they’re locked and loaded.

“I really worked hard over the summer because I wanted to make a difference next year,” Smith said. “Coming out of high school, I didn’t have a Division I scholarship, so I went to Redemption Christian in New York. I was playing in a tournament in New Jersey and coach Fang saw me. When I came here to Coppin State for my visit, I saw that it was a family environment, everybody was welcoming and it was a nice campus.”

Smith is still a relative newcomer to hoops. Growing up the future secret service agent loved soccer. He eventually gave up his dreams of being the next Pele in sixth grade when his dad got him into basketball. Smith was a quick learner and developed a reputation in high school for lighting up scoreboards. He is thankful to be at Coppin State. More importantly, Smith is a member of the Dean’s List and will graduate next May with his degree in criminal justice.

“Graduating in three years mean a lot to me,” Smith said. “I would be the first one in my house to get a degree.”

That’s another special moment Smith will be able to share with his family.

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Coppin welcomes South Carolina State to CSPEC Monday night

Posted on 12 January 2014 by WNST Staff

BALTIMORE, MD—The South Carolina State men (5-10, 1-1 MEAC), will look to bounce back in the win column when they take on Coppin State (4-11, 1-1 MEAC) in a pivotal Mid-Eastern Athletic conference doubleheader, Monday at the Coppin Center. Tipoff is 7:30 p.m., immediately following the women’s game.

The Bulldogs dropped a tough, 73-56, decision to the Bears of Morgan State on Saturday to fall to 1-1 in the MEAC, senior All-MEAC forward Matthew Hezekiah led the way with 16 points and six rebounds. Meanwhile, freshman guard Jalen White added 12 in the loss.

“We don’t add any extra pressure on ourselves we just have to play Bulldogs basketball and take it one game at a time,” said SC State head coach Murray Garvin. “It’s not going to be easy playing a team that’s well coached by a legend (Coach Fang Mitchell) but we also have a good team and we will play our hearts out and leave it on the floor.

Hezekiah leads the team in scoring this season with 13.3 ppg and 5.7 rebounds. Senior guard Adama “Louis” Adams is second on the team behind Hezekiah with 9.5 points per contest. Sophomore forward Daryll Palmer leads the team in rebounds with 6.6 boards, while tossing in 7.7 points.

Coppin State dropped their second conference contest, 75-53, to Savannah State on Saturday. The Eagles is led by Michael Murray with 15.6 ppg, while teammates Sterling Smith and Andre Armstrong added a little over 10.0 points per outing.

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Coppin pays visit to undefeated Toledo Saturday

Posted on 27 December 2013 by WNST Staff

BALTIMORE, Md. – Fresh off of a four-day break to enjoy the Christmas holiday, the Coppin State men’s basketball team returned to practice Thursday to start preparations for a difficult trip to Ohio to meet Mid-American Conference schools Toledo and Akron.
The Eagles (4-7 overall) face undefeated Toledo (11-0) in a Saturday matinee at Savage Arena beginning at 2:00 p.m. This is the fourth stop on a season-high five-game road trip for Coppin State. The Eagles lost a pair of games last weekend at the BVI Tropical Shootout in the British, Virgin Islands to Southern Mississippi (88-74) and Jacksonville State (72-61).
Coppin State has never lost to Toledo, winning both meetings against the Rockets, 77-73 in overtime (1989) and 87-66 (1990). Overall, Coppin State is 5-6 all-time against schools from the Mid-American Conference. The Eagles aren’t approaching this game any differently because Toledo is one of nine NCAA Division I men’s basketball teams without a loss.
“We don’t look at this game any differently than we would any other one,” Coppin State head coach Ron “Fang” Mitchell said. “It’s the biggest game of the year because it’s our next one. For us it doesn’t matter who the opponent is because you’re out there to win the game. My guys know that if we don’t play hard and execute that we could have some problems.”
Coppin State senior forward Michael Murray averaged 18 points per game in both games last weekend. He scored a team-high 23 points against Southern Mississippi. Murray has led CSU in scoring in its last five games. In the two games against Southern Miss and Jacksonville State, Murray shot 52 percent (13 for 25). Overall, for the season, Murray is one of three Coppin State players averaging double figures. He leads the team in scoring with a 15.7 point per game average.
Also averaging double figures for the Eagles are sophomore guard Sterling Smith (12.3 points per game) and junior guard Taariq Cephas (11.5). Smith has scored in double figures seven times this season for the Eagles. He had a season-high 21 points to fuel Coppin State’s upset of Oregon State on Nov. 10. Cephas leads the Eagles with 49 assists. He had his first career double-double with 12 points and 10 assists against Delaware State on Dec. 7.
Cephas is also one of the best foul shooters in the nation as he has made 36-of-40 free throws, including 22 straight. His 90 percent success rate leads from the charity stripe the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference. He was 10-for-10 from the foul line against UMBC on Dec. 11. Junior guard Daquan Brickhouse is fourth in the MEAC in free-throw percentage as he has made 24-of-29 free throws (82.8 percent).
During its two games in the British Virgin Islands, Coppin State averaged 28 free-throw attempts per game. The Eagles are ranked 21st nationally in free-throw shooting percentage. Senior guard Andre Armstrongaveraged 9.5 points per game in the two games and was 9-for-10 from the foul line against Southern Mississippi.
Meanwhile, Toledo is 11-0 for the first time since the 1966-67 season following its 71-67 victory over Cleveland State last Saturday. Toledo junior J.D. Weatherspoon scored a career-high 18 points and grabbed eight rebounds in the win for the Rockets, who are the first MAC school to be 11-0 since Ball State in 1998-99. Joining Weatherspoon in double digits was sophomore center Nathan Boothe (14 pts., 8 reb.) and senior guard Rian Pearson (11 pts., 5 reb.).
In addition to moving up into the No. 3 spot in CollegeInsider.com’s Mid-Major Poll rankings, the Rockets received considerable support in this week’s Associated Press and ESPN/USA Today Coaches Polls. UT received 27 points in the Associated Press Poll, 24 more than last week’s total and received 13 points in the ESPN/USA Today Top 25 poll.
Only Wichita State (12-0) and Harvard (10-1) were ranked ahead of Toledo in the CollegeInsider.com Mid-Major Poll with the Rockets (717 pts.) trailing Harvard (720 pts.) by just three points. Also appearing in the poll’s Top 10 were No. 4 Gonzaga (10-2), No. 5 Saint Mary’s (9-1), No. 6 Manhattan (9-2), No. 7 Indiana State (8-3), No. 8 Green Bay (8-3), No. 9 Princeton (9-2) and No. 10 Drexel (8-3).
All five of Toledo’s starters are averaging in double figures in the scoring column, led by senior Pearson at 16.1 ppg. He is followed by junior guard Justin Drummond (14.9 ppg), junior guard Julius Brown (12.8 ppg), Weatherspoon (11.3 ppg) and Boothe (10.7 ppg).
Coppin State concludes its five-game road trip with a matchup Tuesday against Akron beginning at 6 p.m.

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Coppin G Smith picks up weekly MEAC honor

Posted on 11 November 2013 by WNST Staff

Sterling Smith of Coppin State was named the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) Player of the Week, the conference announced on Monday.  James Daniel of Howard earned Rookie of the Week honors while Du’Vaughn Maxell, of Hampton, was named Defensive Player of the Week.

Smith (G, 6-4, 200, So., Chico, Calif.) led the Eagles to a 1-1 mark last week, including a 78-73 victory over Oregon State.  Smith scored a career-high 21 points, shooting 8-of-12 from the field, with four rebounds, three steals and two blocks in the Eagles’ first-ever win against a Pac-12 opponent.  He also scored 16 points with seven rebounds and two steals against California.  For the week, he averaged 18.5 points, shooting 63-percent from the field (14-of-22), with 5.5 rebounds, 1.5 assists, 1.5 blocks, and 2.5 steals.

Daniel (G/F, 5-11, 165, Fr., Hampton, Va.) averaged 22.0 points, shooting 9-of-17 from 3-point range (.529), with 4.0 rebounds, and 1.5 steals in a pair of wins against Washington College and Gwynedd-Mercy  last week.  He recorded 28 points, connecting on 60-percent of his baskets from long-range (6-of-10), with six boards and three steals against Washington College.

Maxwell (F, 6-7, 215, Sr., Manhattan, N.Y.) paced the Pirates defense with eight rebounds and five blocked shots in a 77-69 win over William & Mary.  He added one steal in 25 minutes of play.  Offensively he scored 12 points and dished out three assists.

Other Top Performances

Muhammad Abdul-Aleem (FAMU) finished with 16 points, hitting 2-of-3 from 3-point range, with two rebounds against Rutgers.

Hakeem Baxter (UMES) scored 17 points and grabbed five rebounds against Columbia.

Ian Chiles (MSU) registered 12 points, two rebounds, one assist and one steal against Ohio State.

Brian Darden (Hampton) scored 18 points, connecting on 4-of-5 baskets (.800) from long range, with five rebounds, one assist and one steal in a 77-69 win over William & Mary.

Mrdjan Gasevic (DSU) recorded 10 points, hitting 5-of-6 from the field, with four rebounds against Cairn.

Kendall Gray (DSU) posted 11 points and seven rebounds with three assists and two blocks against Cairn.

Bradon Goode (NSU) recorded 10 points, seven rebounds, and four blocks against Texas Southern.

Malcolm Hawkins (NSU) hit a career high 31 points with six rebounds, two assists and one steal against Texas Southern.

Jeremy Ingram (NCCU) scored a game-high 27 points, including 19 in the second half, with two blocks against Cincinnati.

Ricky Johnson (B-CU) recorded 22 points, six rebounds, three assists and one steal against Trinity Baptist College.

KyRee Jones (UMES) posted 17 points, hitting 5-of-5 from 3-point range, against Columbia.

Trey Kellum (FAMU) recorded a combined 21 points and 10 rebounds with two steals and one assist two non-conference games last week.

Jordan Lawson (DSU) tallied a double-double of 15 points and 10 rebounds in a 107-48 win over Cairn.

 Prince Okoroh (Howard) averaged 13.5 points, 4.5 rebounds 2.5 blocks and 4.0 steals in wins over Washington College and Gwynedd-Mercy.

Clemmye Owens (B-CU) recorded 12 points, three rebounds, three steals and one assist against Trinity Baptist.

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