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Senior Akeema Richards
Courtesy: Mark Campbell

Blue Hens Unable to Hold on in 84-80 Overtime Loss at Princeton

Courtesy: Delaware Athletics
Release: 12/15/2013
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PRINCETON, N.J. – The University of Delaware women’s basketball team had five players score at least 12 points Sunday afternoon, but it wasn’t enough as the Blue Hens suffered heartbreak in an 84-80 overtime loss at Princeton.

Delaware, which had not played a game in two weeks, saw career games from senior Akeema Richards (Baltimore, Md.) and sophomore Jade Clark (at right; Ashburn, Va.), who posted 17 and 12 points, respectively.  Freshman Shanice Johnson (Philadelphia, Pa.) tied a career-best 14 points in the loss for the Blue Hens, who snapped a five-game winning streak to move to 6-2 overall on the year.

Down by two at the half and seven within the first four minutes of the second stanza, Delaware went on a 10-1 lead with 11:42 remaining in regulation to take its first lead of the game since the 2-0 mark.

With 1:30 left on the clock, the Blue Hens took the 74-70 lead off of a jumper in the paint from Richards.  The Tigers were able to regain the deficit off of a layup from Blake Dietrick and free throws from Alex Wheatley to tie things at 74-74 and send the game into overtime.

Richards gave UD the first points of the extra period off of a jumper at the 3:53 mark to go up, 76-74.  Princeton would tie things once again before Richards drained two from the charity stripe to take the 78-76 advantage.

Amanda Berntsen tied things at 78-78 before Dietrick nailed a three from the left side to give the Tigers the lead for good at 81-78 with just over a minute remaining.

Delaware would have two players foul out in the final minute and Princeton made three free throws en route to victory.

The two teams went back and forth throughout the second half, as there were 11 total lead changes and 14 tied scores.

Dietrick led all scorers with 22 points while Kristen Helmstetter tallied 18 points and 11 rebounds for Princeton (6-4).

POST-GAME QUOTES
Head Coach Tina Martin – “Defensively, we had some letdowns when the shot clock was running down and we didn’t have good help side defense.  A lot of points were scored today and I keep telling the team, our defense is going to save us or break us.  Offensively, it’s the first time we’ve really been in a tight game for these kids and at times, we executed well and at times we didn’t.  We have to keep working on more end of game stuff and our defensive rotation and in the end, we will become a better basketball team.”

HEN SCRATCHINGS
     ·     Delaware snapped a five-game winning streak and suffered its first loss away from the Bob Carpenter Center this season.
     ·     Today’s game marked the first time the Blue Hens have played in overtime this season.  Additionally, Delaware had not reached the 80-point mark at all this season prior to today’s game.
     ·     UD has had at least three players score in double figures in seven games this season, including all six victories.
     ·     Delaware is now 17-8 all-time against Princeton and 7-5 at Jadwin Gymnasium.
     ·     Last season, the Blue Hens defeated the Tigers, 59-58, in comeback fashion and on a last second shot from then-senior Lauren Carra.
     ·     Kelsey Buchanan (at top left) has scored in double figures in all eight games this season.

UPCOMING SCHEDULE
     ·     Friday, Dec. 20 – Delaware vs. Youngstown State (at Lehigh Christmas City Classic) – 7:30 p.m. – Stabler Arena (Bethlehem, Pa.)
     ·     Saturday, Dec. 21 – Delaware vs. Lehigh or Vermont (at Lehigh Christmas City Classic) – Time TBA – Stabler Arena (Bethlehem, Pa.)
     ·     Monday, Dec. 30 – St. John’s at Delaware – 5 p.m. – Bob Carpenter Center (Newark, Del.)

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