The Norfolk State University Men’s Basketball Team is running away with the MEAC.
The Spartans are led by their 6-10 center Senior Kyle O’Quinn, who has been averaging a double double for almost 2 straight seasons.This year, O’Quinn is fourth in the MEAC in scoring (15.5) and first in rebounding (10.4) and third in field goal percentage (57%). He set a new single-season school record with 110 blocked shots and now has a school record 186 in his career. He also established a new school Division I-era single-season record with 355 total rebounds and 11.1-rebound average. O’Quinn has started his Senior year right where he left off…on top of the division.
The Spartans head coach Anthony Evans is entering in his fifth year, and he has directed NSU to the best four-year stretch in the school’s Division I history. In 2010-11, the Spartans advanced to the MEAC Tournament semifinals for the third time in four seasons while keeping the school’s streak of 13 consecutive seasons with a MEAC record of .500 or better alive.
This season, Evans has his team with a record of 14-5. More impressively, they are 6-0 in the MEAC conference and 7-1 at home. He has coached his team to a seven game win streak, the Spartans’ longest since the ’94-95 season when the Spartans won 14 straight. For right now, they are halfway there to making Spartan again.
The Spartans also have gotten exceptional guard play from Senior Chris McEachin and Sophomore Pendarvis Williams. They are both averaging almost 13 points per game. McEachin is a transfer from Radford University and he helped the Highlanders win the Big South Conference championship and reach the NCAA Tournament for the 2008-2009 season. Williams, a MEAC All-Rookie Team selection was also named the team’s Most Outstanding Freshman. For a guard to shooting 50% from the field means good things are going to happen for this offense.
In the Spartans’ last victory against Coppin State, O’Quinn and Williams had career nights. Williams scored a career high in points with 25, going 6 for 8 behind the 3 point line. O’Quinn registered his twelfth double double of the year finishing the game with 24 points and 19 rebounds.
Can the NSU Spartans continue their reign in the MEAC? They continue play on January 21st by finishing their three-game MEAC road swing with a 6 p.m. matchup at rival Hampton.