Livingstone Falls Short to Virginia State in CIAA Championship

(Photo Courtesy: CIAA Twitter Account)

By: J. Blackwell

The Virginia State Trojans (23-5) held off the Livingstone Blue Bears (15-17) for an 89-79 win in the CIAA Tournament Men’s Basketball Championship. This marks the Trojans first title since 1989.

The Trojans gained complete control of the game in the second half, opening with a 12-0 run to gain the edge over Livingston.

The Blue Bears may have outscored the Trojans off the bench 55-19, but that proved to not be enough against a fiery Trojan team determined to take the win. The Trojans outrebounded the Blue Bears 38-31.

“They came out hungry. They wanted it bad,” senior forward Ty Newman, who finished with 21 points and nine rebounds, said. “They looked like the best team in the conference in the second half.”

Senior guard Javon Moore led the Trojans with 30 points and nine rebounds. Tournament MVP, Kevin Williams added 24 points and six rebounds.

“We set a goal earlier in the year to be conference champions and we started conditioning and weightlifting with this day in mind,” said Virginia State coach Lonnie Blow. “For the most part, we were consistent with our effort and for the most part we were consistent with our execution.”

The Trojans, who earned an automatic bid to the NCAA Division II Tournament, will now wait for their tournament seeding on the NCAA selection show, which will air March 6 on at 10 p.m.