By: Tanasia Smith
Howard University men’s basketball team won big, 71-54, at their first home game of the season, with James “JT” Miller scoring 30 points against American University (AU) on Saturday, Dec. 3.
The Bison (1-5) had home court advantage Saturday afternoon as they hosted American University’s men’s basketball team. Howard was off to a great start and was up 32-26 by the end of the first half.
During the second half, the team gained momentum. Five minutes into the second half, Miller made a layup that brought Howard’s lead to the double digits. Howard kept this pace going as Damon Collins made three dunks during the half, and a layup with six minutes remaining which brought Howard up 57-35.
The Bison continued to build upon their lead, stealing the ball and turning it around. Finishing up the second half, Miller had 30 points, Collins had 19 and Solomon Mangham had 17.
Two Bison, James Daniel III and Marcel Boyd, suffered ankle injuries, which caused them to sit out this game. They are on the road to recovery according to team manager Jamel Wright, who said that it has been hard to adjust to playing without Daniel, last year’s leading scorer.
The team worked to win against the odds, thanks to the support from the crowd, according to senior forward, Solomon Mangham. “Playing at home gave us a big confidence boost. A lot of small things helped us have success in this game,” he said. Howard fans held up signs and cheered relentlessly behind AU’s bench.
Despite this being the first win of the season, Wright anticipates the remainder of the season being difficult. The team and staff are preparing for the tough schedule ahead, but the players will continue to improve as the season endures.
Sa’eed Nelson carried American (1-6) scoring 18 points. Delante Jones and Mark Gasperini each had 12 points.
Howard will play at University of Maryland on Wednesday, Dec. 7 at 9 p.m.