Delaware Suffers Tough 81-68 Road Loss Against Quick Hofstra Team In Delle Donne's Return
Photo Courtesy of Mark Campbell
HEMPSTEAD, N.Y. -- Playing in her first game since Dec. 19, sophomore All-American Elena Delle Donne dropped a game-high 28 points on Hofstra University Sunday afternoon. But the University of Delaware women's basketball team could not keep pace with a quick Hofstra team, falling 81-68 in the Mack Sports Complex.
Delle Donne (at right) hit nine of her 18 attempts from the field while also going nine-for-nine from the free throw line, extending her consecutive free throws to 17, but it wasn't enough as the Blue Hens (11-9, 4-5 Colonial Athletic Association) fell for the fourth time in the last five games.
At the 17:54 mark, Delle Donne checked into the game, seeing her first action since December 19 against Penn State. She had missed the previous 11 games and returned to action after being treated for symptoms of Lyme Disease. The 6-5 Wilmington, Del. native did not look rusty, putting up 16 points in the first half, going 5-of-10 from the field, including one three pointer, while knocking down all five of her free throw attempts.
Sophomore Lauren Carra put in 11 points, continuing her streak of double-digit point games to 11 straight. Vanessa Kabongo tallied 10 points while junior Sarah Acker finished with eight points to round out the Blue Hen point leaders.
The early going was a back and forth affair, which featured six lead changes and three ties. Delaware gained what proved to be its final lead of the game at the 10:09 mark of the first half. Delle Done hit a jumper and was fouled on the shot. She converted the and-one situation to put the Hens up 19-17.
The remaining 10 minutes of the first half was close until the Pride put together an 11-2 run over the remaining four minutes to take a 43-30 lead into the break.
Delaware’s offense looked stronger in the second half, putting up 38 points. But the Pride, which improved to 12-8 on the season and 4-5 in the CAA, matched the total with 38 points of their own in the second stanza.
With less than five minutes in the game, Delle Donne tallied a four-point run of her own to get the Hens back within 11 points of the Pride, but the comeback was short-lived as Hofstra rebuilt the lead back to 15 at 78-63.
As a squad, Delaware dished out a season-high 17 assists, with Carra handing out seven her self, setting a new career high. Junior Jocelyn Bailey finished with five helpers on the afternoon, while Delle Donne handed out three.
The Hens, now 11-9 overall and 4-5 in the conference, had difficulty on the boards, pulling down 30 while the Pride reeled in 40. Delaware collected just four rebounds on the offensive side, but had 26 on missed Hofstra attempts.
Delaware hit 26 of its 56 field goal attempts (46.4 percent) and went 12-of-17 from the charity stripe. The Hens knocked away three Hofstra shots, including two blocks from Delle Donne.
The Pride finished with five players in double-figures led by Shante Evans’ 25 points. Evans was nearly unstoppable, hitting 11 of her 14 attempts from the field and snaring 14 rebounds with 10 on defense. She was joined in double-digits by Kate Loper, who went six-of-13 from three-point land and finished with 18 points. Nicole Capurso tallied 13 points and had a game-high eight assists, as Candice Bellocchio and Candace Bond recorded 12 and 10 points, respectively.
Delle Donne ran her career point total to 984, just 16 points shy of the 1,000 point plateau. She has posted that point total in just 37 games. With her career scoring average of 26.5 points per game, Delle Donne has the potential to hit the mark in the Hens' next game on Thursday when they host Northeastern. Game time is set for the Bob Carpenter Center at 7 p.m.Back To Women's Basketball Home Women's Basketball Story Archive