Delaware Closes Out 2012 in Style as Balanced Attack Leads to 73-66 Triumph Over Rider
December 31, 2012
Photos Courtesy of Chris Mlynarczyk
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NEWARK, Del. -- The University of Delaware men's basketball squad closed out 2012 in style Monday afternoon as four Blue Hen starters scored in double figures and Josh Brinkley (at right) and Jamelle Hagins dominated inside in a 73-66 non-league victory over Rider at the Bob Carpenter Center.
Hagins, the nation's second leading rebounder at 12.2 per game, posted his ninth double-double this season with 14 points and 16 rebounds and Brinkley dropped in a season-high 17 points to go with eight rebounds as the Blue Hens (5-8) won their second straight game.
Rider (6-8), which lost its fourth straight contest, got 13 points each from Daniel Stewart and Nurideen Lindsey with Jonathan Thompson adding 10 points to go with team-highs of seven rebounds and four assists.
Delaware, which snapped a personal four-game losing streak to the Broncs, also got 12 points and a season-high seven assists from Devon Saddler while Jarvis Threatt (at left) pitched in with 12 points and Kyle Anderson added nine points on three three-pointers.
The Blue Hens, playing for the first time in 10 days, held a commanding 52-31 advantage on the boards to overcome 15 turnovers and 38 percent shooting (26 of 68) from the field. Delaware pulled down more than 50 rebounds for the second straight game after collecting 51 in an 83-60 win over Penn back on Dec. 21.
"I really like how we are rebounding the ball," said Delaware head coach Monté Ross, whose team will begin Colonial Athletic Association play this Saturday, Jan. 5, at Old Dominion. "We just need to limit our turnovers because we have so many weapons. Josh can really score the ball and when he is healthy, it really makes us a good team. Devon was very patient in the first half today and he made some big plays down the stretch."
A hard-fought first half featured four ties and six lead changes before a late flurry by Delaware put the Hens up 39-32 at intermission. After Rider tied the score at 30-30 on two free throws by Daniel Stewart with 3:18 left, the Hens went on a 9-2 run to close the half with Anderson burying a three-pointer with 59 seconds remaining for the seven-point margin.
Rider cut the second half lead to four early on but the Hens answered and built the lead to as much as 13 points on a dunk by Hagins for a 51-38 lead with 15:32 remaining.
Delaware stayed in front for the next nine minutes before an 8-2 Rider rally, capped by a three-pointer by Shawn Valentine, gave the Broncs a 61-60 lead with 6:14 left.
But Saddler answered with two free throws and Threatt converted a conventional three-point play to put Delaware back up for good at 65-61 with 5:15 left.
Rider's Zedric Sadler cut the lead to one again with a three-pointer 18 seconds later, but Delaware's Carl Baptiste and Devon Saddler converted consecutive layups and the Broncs never got closer. Two free throws by Saddler with eight seconds left sealed the verdict.