Delaware Continues to Roll as Delle Donne Nets 28, Everyone Contributes as No. 22 Ranked Blue Hens Down Yale 77-45
Photos Courtesy of Chris Permar (Delle Donne) and Chris Mlynarczyk (Parker)
NEWARK, Del. -- The University of Delaware women's basketball continued to roll on Monday night as the No. 22 ranked Blue Hens won their second game in just over 24 hours with a decisive 77-45 victory over Yale at the Bob Carpenter Center.
Playing for the second straight day after knocking off William & Mary Sunday afternoon, the Hens stormed out to a 22-point lead at halftime and cruised to the victory to continue the best start in school history at 7-0.
The Hens had moved up two spots to an all-time best No. 22 national ranking by the Associated Press earlier in the day.
All-American Elena Delle Donne (at right), the nation's leading scorer at 29.3 points per game, surpassed the 20-point mark for the 11th straight game as she netted a game-high 28 points and pulled seven rebounds in just 19 minutes of action.
No Delaware player saw more than 19 minutes of action and 14 of the Blue Hens' 15 players in uniform played at least 10 minutes, scored at least one point, and pulled at least one rebound.
“Our message tonight to the team was that we needed to play defense no matter what, even when we get excited on offense,” said Delaware head coach Tina Martin of a unit that held Yale to 30 percent shooting from the field and forced 23 turnovers. “They all work so hard. I told them that I know they will make mistakes but they have to play defense no matter what. That’s what we did and that made all the different tonight. We were happy that we didn’t allow 45 points. They did a great job. We are just focused on what we need to do right now, move forward, and get better as a team.”
Yale (4-3), which had a two-game win streak snapped, got 10 points from Megan Vasquez and eight each from Zenab Keita and Aarica West. The Bulldogs were hurt by the 23 turnovers and 30 percent shooting from the field (18 of 60), including a tough 2 for 20 shooting performance from long-range.
Delaware, which overcame 25 turnovers itself, also held a commanding 54-31 advantage on the boards. Lauren Carra, Meghan McLean, and Kelsey Buchanan each added five points and Danielle Parker (at left) led all rebounders with nine caroms.
“We are becoming more consistent and improving defensively,” said Buchanan, a backup forward who has benefitted from increased playing time over the last three games. “Our team is very well connected and everyone is really close, which is helping us to grow together.”
Yale scored the first basket of the game, ending a streak of seven straight games for Delaware getting on the board first, but it hardly mattered. That 2-0 lead was the only one of the night for the Bulldogs as Delle Donne, who earlier in the day was named the Colonial Athletic Association Player of the Week for the third time this season, scored 11 straight points for the Hens over the next three minutes and Delaware never looked back.
Delaware later put together a 12-0 run, highlighted by seven points from Delle Donne and a three-point play from backup forward Sarah Acker, to its biggest lead of the half at 38-14 with 5:08 left in the stanza. The Hens went into intermission up 42-20.
The Hens kept rolling in the second half, using a 16-0 run to increase a 51-30 lead to 67-30 with 9:55 remaining. Buchanan scored five points in that span to lead the Hens.
Delaware will look to continue its hot start this Sunday, Dec. 11, when the Blue Hens travel to Atlantic Coast Conference foe Wake Forest for a 2 p.m. tip-off. The Hens have never defeated a current ACC opponent, falling in all 16 previous attempts, including a 63-62 setback to Wake Forest in their only meeting with the Demon Deacons on Dec. 9, 1989.Back To Women's Basketball Home Women's Basketball Story Archives