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College Basketball:
Raptor of the Week: Imani Hafiz

Monday, January 16, 2006

By Mike Ballard
RutgersCamden Sports Correspondent

Imani Hafiz (Franklinville, NJ/Delsea Regional)

Rutgers-Camden sophomore guard Imani Hafiz notched her second career double-double in a home loss to Kean University Jan. 14, collecting 10 rebounds and 10 points, while also collecting a game-high six steals and tying for a game-high three assists. Earlier in the week, in a loss at New Jersey City University Jan. 11, Hafiz had nine points, five rebounds and a team-high eight steals. For the season, she leads the Raptors with 65 steals (4.6 per game), a total which already gives her 129 steals in the second year of her career (12th on the all-time list). In the most recent NCAA national stats, when she was averaging 4.3 steals through Jan. 8 games, Hafiz ranked 11th in the country.


Wed. 11 New Jersey City University 65, Rutgers-Camden 56
Sat. 14 Kean University 72, Rutgers-Camden 63


Wed. 18 at William Paterson University 8 p.m.
Sat. 21 Rutgers-Newark 1 p.m.
Wed. 25 Rowan University 6 p.m.
Sat. 28 at Ramapo College 1 p.m.

Wed. 1 The College of New Jersey 6 p.m.
Sat. 4 at Montclair State University 4 p.m.
Wed. 8 Richard Stockton College 6 p.m.
Sat. 11 at Kean University 1 p.m.
Wed. 15 New Jersey City University 6 p.m.
Sat. 18 William Paterson University 1 p.m.

The Rutgers-Camden women’s basketball team lost a pair of New Jersey Athletic Conference games on the week as they fell to 4-11 and extended their losing streak to four games.

The Lady Raptors dropped their first game of the week when New Jersey City University rallied from an 11-point second-half deficit to post a 65-56 win in Jersey City Jan. 11. In their second game, the Raptors dropped a home contest against Kean University, 72-63, Jan. 14.

At New Jersey City, the Lady Raptors built a 27-22 halftime lead and increased the margin to 33-22 by scoring the first six points of the second half. The Raptors also held a 39-28 lead with 16:21 remaining before NJCU mounted its comeback.

The Gothic Knights scored 13 of the next 15 points to tie the game at 41-41. After Rutgers-Camden rebounded with four points to grab a 45-41 advantage, NJCU scored eight straight points to take the lead for good, 49-45. Junior point guard Latrese McNair and senior forward Megan Kabba each scored four points in that run for NJCU.

McNair, who went 9-for-18 from the field and scored eight of the Gothic Knights’ final 20 points, collected a game-high 19 points, six assists and 12 steals. The 12 steals tied her career high.

Sophomore center Tiffany Boyd collected a double-double with 10 points and a career-high 13 rebounds for the Gothic Knights, while adding five assists and four blocked shots. Kabba had 13 points, four assists and two blocks.

Although Rutgers-Camden held a 45-38 advantage in rebounds, the Gothic Knights shot 47.5 percent (29-for-61) and blocked 14 shots, holding the Lady Raptors to 31.4-percent shooting (22-for-70). Rutgers-Camden also had 26 turnovers to NJCU’s 22.

For the Raptors, senior guard Carmen Zimmitt (Woodstown, NJ/Woodstown) and senior center Megan Rulon (Sewell, NJ/Clearview Regional) each collected double-doubles, including 11 rebounds apiece. Zimmitt had 18 points, while Rulon added 16 points, four assists and a game-high five blocks.

Sophomore guard Krystal Jankowski (Somerdale, NJ/Sterling) notched 11 points, eight rebounds, five assists and three steals, while sophomore guard Imani Hafiz (Franklinville, NJ/Delsea Regional) added nine points, five rebounds and eight steals.

In the Kean game, the Cougars placed four players in double figures, sparked by a double-double from sophomore forward Kimberly Smith, and went on to outlast Rutgers-Camden, 72-63. The Cougars own a 27-17 lead in the all-time series, which started during the 1982-83 season.

In a first half which featured nine lead changes, Kean built a 23-16 edge before Rutgers-Camden bounced back on the strong inside play of junior forward Karen Carter (Pennsauken, NJ/Pennsauken). Carter, who scored a team-high nine points in the half, gave the Raptors a 25-23 lead with 3:51 remaining before Kean rallied to take a 31-28 halftime lead. The Cougars took the lead, 28-27, on a putback by sophomore guard Nina Oshiokpekhai, who added a three-pointer moments later.

Smith had nine first-half points for the Cougars.

The Raptors never recovered in the second half as Kean went on a 10-2 run shortly into the half. The run was sparked by junior guard Francine Bell, who scored eight points and added an assist in the run on her way to a game-high 16 points.

Smith finished with 15 points and 13 rebounds for her double-double, while Oshiokpekhai scored 14 and junior forward Chi Clark added 10. Sophomore center Chari’ Cooper, who entered the week second in the nation in rebounding with an average of 13.0, collected a game-high 15 rebounds, while adding eight points and three blocked shots.

For the Lady Raptors, Hafiz collected a double-double of 10 points and 10 rebounds, while adding a game-high six steals. Jankowski had a team-high 15 points, while Rulon notched 12 rebounds, eight points and a game-high eight blocked shots. Rulon’s blocks give her 290 for her career, one shy of the program record held by Kamilah Byrd (1993-97).


Wed. 11 New Jersey City University 112, Rutgers-Camden 82
Sat. 14 Kean University 92, Rutgers-Camden 70


Wed. 18 at William Paterson University 6 p.m.
Sat. 21 Rutgers-Newark 3 p.m.
Wed. 25 Rowan University 8 p.m.
Sat. 28 at Ramapo College 3 p.m.

Wed. 1 The College of New Jersey 8 p.m.
Sat. 4 at Montclair State University 2 p.m.
Wed. 8 Richard Stockton College 8 p.m.
Sat. 11 at Kean University 3 p.m.
Wed. 15 New Jersey City University 8 p.m.
Sat. 18 William Paterson University 3 p.m.

The Scarlet Raptors ran into a buzzsaw when they faced the NJAC’s leading team, the New Jersey City University Gothic Knights in Jersey City Jan. 11. NJCU raced to a 61-38 halftime lead and went on to defeat Rutgers-Camden, 112-82, to start the Scarlet Raptors toward an 0-2 week in conference play. Rutgers-Camden also dropped a home game against Kean University, 92-70, Jan. 14.

The Gothic Knights’ victory marked the most points allowed by the Scarlet Raptors since a 119-64 loss to Ramapo College on Dec. 4, 2004, and tied for the 10th-most points ever allowed by Rutgers-Camden. The program record for points allowed came in a 122-79 loss to Morgan State on Feb. 22, 1983.

Not only did the Scarlet Raptors lose to the Gothic Knights, but freshman guard Wayne Smalls (Camden, NJ/Medical Arts) saw his remarkable streak of consecutive foul shots snapped at 21. Smalls, who earlier in the week was cited for his third NJAC Rookie of the Week honor this season, missed his first foul shot of the evening before going 6-for-8 on the night from the free throw line. His 21 straight foul shots, accomplished over three games, tied Bill Bramble for the second-longest string in program history. Bramble also holds the record of 24, set from Feb. 3-12, 1966.

Smalls finished with a game-high 31 points for the Scarlet Raptors, including 5-for-9 shooting from three-point range to tie his career high for treys.

The Gothic Knights are 76-0 all-time when they score 100 or more points, and they are 45-4 in the series against Rutgers-Camden, including 35 wins in the last 36 games.

NJCU built its 61-38 halftime lead and scored the first 22 points of the second half to take a commanding 83-38 lead. The Scarlet Raptors didn’t score in the second half until sophomore Michael Clay (Willingboro, NJ/Burlington County Tech) had a layup with 13:05 left in the game.

The Raptors’ lone lead of the night came on the first basket of the game by junior guard Dane Nicholson (Pleasantville, NJ/Holy Spirit). Ten seconds later, at 19:34 of the first half, NJCU senior swingman Mark Washington hit a three-pointer to give the Gothic Knights the lead for good at 3-2. Holding a 14-13 lead, NJCU outscored the Raptors, 47-25, the rest of the half to grab its big halftime lead.

Washington notched 24 points in 21 minutes for the Gothic Knights while moving into 11th place on the program’s career scoring list with 1,322 points. He shot 9-of-11 from the field, including 5-for-5 from three-point range. Washington added seven rebounds and four assists.

NJCU, which placed 12 players in the scoring column, also received 15 points and eight rebounds from freshman forward Dashan Martin. Senior center James Kaiser added 12 points, while freshman forward Dana John added 10.

NJCU out-rebounded the Raptors, 54-30, and shot 54.5 percent (42-for-77) from the field, including 41.7 (10-for-24) from three-point range.

Smalls notched 18 of his 31 points in the second half to finish two points shy of his career high 33 points, scored against Valley Forge Christian College (Nov. 28, 2005). Sophomore guard Amir Fantroyal (Sicklerville, NJ/Timber Creek) added 16 points and a game-high six assists, while Nicholson canned 12 points and shared game-high rebounding honors of eight with NJCU’s Martin.

Rutgers-Camden freshman forward Antoine Miller (Camden, NJ/Medical Arts) finished with 11 points.

Nicholson and Smalls tied for game-high honors with three steals apiece.

In their home game against Kean University, senior forward BJ Hamby and sophomore forward Jonathan Oliver sparked the Cougars to an early 21-15 lead and the visitors went on to defeat the Scarlet Raptors, 92-70.

Hamby had eight points and Oliver had seven as Kean took the lead for good during that early run. Oliver’s jumper gave the Cougars the lead for good at 6-5.

Kean, which has won three straight games against Rutgers-Camden, leads the all-time series, 37-19.

Hamby led four Cougars in double figures with 15 points, while Oliver and senior forward Armet Coles Jr. each scored 14. Sophomore guard Lamar Wright had 12 points for the Cougars, who opened up a 45-39 halftime lead and ended up placing 10 players in the scoring column.

Kean also received a game-high nine rebounds from Hamby, while sophomore forward Bryan Keller had a game-high nine assists.

Kean shot 54.4 percent from the field (37-for-68), while Rutgers-Camden shot 35.6 (26-for-73). The Cougars also held a 51-36 advantage off the boards.

Nicholson canned a game-high 23 points and finished second on the Raptors with six rebounds. Miller notched 13 points, while Smalls added 12 points. Fantroyal had 10 points and team-high totals of seven rebounds and four assists.

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