Basketball season can never get here fast enough in the CIAA.
The league hosted its annual media day Wednesday in Charlotte, with new Commissioner Jacqie Carpenter joining men’s and women’s coaches. It’ll be interesting to see how well the coaches’ predicted order of finish holds up. Winston-Salem State won the men’s title as expected while Shaw, picked second in the South Division, won the women’s and national championships.
• Fayetteville State women’s basketball coach Eva Patterson-Heath was inducted into N.C. A&T’s Sports Hall of Fame last month.
Patterson-Heath was a four-year starter at A&T from 1974-77 and was a co-captain for each season while helping the Aggies to a pair of N.C. Association for Intercollegiate Athletics for Women District 3 titles.
Patterson-Heath is going into her fourth season at FSU.
• Livingstone linebacker Tyheim Pitt was named CIAA Linebacker of the Week.
Pitt, an All-CIAA pre-season selection from Freemont, N.C., collected a game-high 14 tackles (13 solo) and two pass breakups in a 23-21 win against Virginia Union, the Blue Bears first against the Panthers since 2004. The victory gave Livingstone (2-3, 2-0 CIAA) consecutive victories for the first time since 2008 and kept the Blue Bears tied atop the Southern Division with Winston-Salem State.
Livingstone plays Saint Augustine’s on Oct. 6 for homecoming at 1:30 p.m. at Alumni Stadium.
• Johnson C. Smith volleyball went 2-1 in the CIAA North-South Roundup at Winston-Salem State last week. The Golden Bulls beat Bowie State 3-2 and Lincoln 3-1, but lost 3-1 to Virginia Union. JCSU is 3-10 overall and 3-6 in the conference.
• Shaw and JCSU, the resident women’s basketball powers, will square off on national television.
The Bears and Golden Bulls play Feb. 23 in Raleigh on CBS Sports Network as part of the NCAA’s Division II package. The network will show nine games over the season, with Shaw-JCSU the only CIAA game scheduled.