Spartans and Monarchs start rivalry in playoffs

Published 11:54 pm Tuesday, November 22, 2011

No. 19 Norfolk State (9-2, 7-1 MEAC) and No. 10 Old Dominion (9-2, 6-2 CAA) will face each other on the gridiron for the first time, each in their FCS (Division I-AA) postseason debuts, in the first round of the Football Championship Subdivision Championships at ODU’s Foreman Field on Saturday at 1:30 p.m.

The Spartans made the postseason thanks to their first-ever Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference championship.

The Monarchs, in their third season since renewing football after a three-generation-long absence and in their first season in the Colonial Athletic Association, went 6-2 through the CAA – home of four of the last eight champions in the FCS.

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Freshman lineman George Riddick (King’s Fork), while recruited as an offensive lineman, played nine games on the defensive line this season for NSU. Riddick totaled eight tackles.

Wide receiver Tyrece Shepherd (Lakeland), offensive lineman Steven Beard (Nansemond River) and running back Bryant Bailey (King’s Fork) are also on the Spartan squad.

“Our players are very familiar with each other and I know the city of Norfolk will be abuzz about the game. It should be a great game for both schools and the city to embrace,” said Norfolk State head coach Pete Adrian.

One more former Bulldog is also in the FCS Playoffs with another CAA school.

Towson (9-2, 6-2) finished its regular season on Saturday with a 28-17 win at Rhode Island. The Tigers received a first-round bye and will host Patriot League champion Lehigh (10-1) in the second round next week in Baltimore.

Derek Wright (King’s Fork) is a freshman linebacker for the Tigers and has seen action in two games this season.


Old Dominion’s men’s basketball squad challenged No. 2 Kentucky, but fell 62-52 to the Wildcats, in the championship game of the Hall of Fame Tip-Off in Uncasville, Conn. on Sunday.

The Monarchs (3-2) beat the Big East’s South Florida 68-66 in overtime on Saturday night to earn the matchup against Kentucky.

Junior forward Nick Wright (Nansemond River) came off the bench to get nine points and six rebounds against UK. Wright returned from an injury to get his first playing time of the season during the tournament.

ODU trailed 50-49 with seven minutes left before the Wildcats took control down the stretch.

The Monarchs host Vermont on Wednesday at 7 p.m.


Junior wing player Andrea Jones (Nansemond River) scored 20 points to lead Mount Olive (2-1) to a 73-65 win against visiting Chowan (1-3) on Saturday.

Mt. Olive jumped out to a 22-3 lead. Chowan fought back to a 32-18 halftime score and cut Mt. Olive’s lead down to 44-36 with 12:20 to play.

CU senior guard Ransheda Jennings (King’s Fork) had nine points, eight assists and six steals.

Jones is averaging 20.0 points per game and has hit nine three-pointers in the first three Lady Trojan games.


Georgetown’s women’s basketball team rebounded from back-to-back defeats to rout Houston 66-36 on Saturday in Washington, D.C.

With the Lady Hoyas (2-2) leading 39-9 at halftime and 52-12 five minutes into the second half, 15 Lady Hoya players saw action with no starter needing to play more than 24 minutes.

Junior Sugar Rodgers (King’s Fork) had six points, four rebounds and two blocks for the Lady Hoyas.

Georgetown had a home date with Monmouth Monday evening. The Lady Hoyas go to Las Vegas and the Lady Rebel Roundup this weekend. Georgetown meets Georgia in the first round on Saturday.


Former Nansemond-Suffolk swimming standout Bryan Nuckles won two individual races for McDaniel as the Green Terror hosted, but lost to, St. Mary’s (Md.) on Saturday in Westminster, Md.

Nuckles, a junior at McDaniel, won the 50 freestyle in 21.91 seconds and the 100 free in 49.13.