I-495 Closure Update




Delle Donne, Lucas push Blue Hens to 1st Sweet 16
By Sean Greene

Updated Wednesday, March 27, 2013 - 12:29am

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Delaware guards Lauren Carra, from left, Elena Delle Donne, Jaquetta May and Trumae Lucas celebrate after winning a second-round game against North Carolina in the women's NCAA college basketball tournament. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

Elena Delle Donne scored 33 points as Delaware advanced to their first ever NCAA Women's Basketball Regional with a 78-69 victory over North Carolina at the Bob Carpenter Center Tuesday night.

The Blue Hens trailed 43-35 at halftime, and fell behind by 10 early in the half, but shot 50 percent from the floor and made 15 of 19 free throws in the second half to take advantage of a tightly called second 20 minutes.

North Carolina used a full-court press for most of the game, but after a physical first few minutes, the officials were liberal with calls on holding and grabbing on inbound plays, eventually fouling out UNC's 6'6" Waltiea Rolle who finished with 23 points, 6 blocks, and 6 rebounds.

Delaware hit their free throws going 25-of-31 from the stripe, eventually stretching the lead to as many as 7 twice, before having to hold off a late North Carolina rally.

Trumae Lucas scored a career-high 19 points, including 4 steals, 4 rebounds, and 4 assists. She had one of the key sequences when she stole the basketball, and converted it into a go-ahead layup to make it 51-50.

On the ensuing Tar Heel posession, Lucas stepped in front of Ruffin-Pratt, who picked up her 4th foul with 11:55 remaining, forcing her to the North Carolina bench.

With the huge prescence out of the game, Delaware's next three field goals game in the paint from Delle Donne (the 3,000th point of her career), Jaquetta May, and Trumae Lucas to put Delaware up by 3. Delaware's jumper at 5:06 proved to be the last points Delaware scored that wasn't either in the paint, or from the free-throw line.

Meanwhile, North Carolina, which shot 48 percent in the opening half, cooled off to 30 percent after the break, opening the door for Delaware to eventually put away the biggest victory in program history.

The game was back and forth early with the game tied at 9, before a 14-6 run gave the Tar Heels some breathing space.

Delaware responded by claiming leads at 30-29 and 32-31, but then a 12-0 run exclusively on Megan Buckland 3-pointers quickly put North Carolina up 43-32 before Delle Donne's buzzer-beating 3 before halftime.

Delle Donne became the 9th player in women's college basketball history to reach 3,000 points. The senior also grabbed 8 rebounds and blocked two shots.

Lucas finished with 20 points, along with a 4-pack of rebounds, assists, and steals in 35 minutes off of the bench. Danielle Parker was left to bang inside against Rolle, and held her own with 14 points and 13 rebounds.

Delaware advances to face No. 2 Kentucky, an 84-70 winner over No. 7 Dayton in the Bridgeport Regional semifinal on Saturday at either 12 or 2:30.

Elena Delle Donne scored 33 points as Delaware advanced to their first ever NCAA Women's Basketball Regional with a 78-69 victory over North Carolina at the Bob Carpenter Center Tuesday night.

The Blue Hens trailed 43-35 at halftime, and fell behind by 10 early in the half, but rallied to claim their first lead of the half at 52-51.

North Carolina used a full-court press for most of the game, but after a physical first few minutes, the officials were liberal with calls on holding and grabbing on inbound plays, eventually fouling out UNC's 6'6" Waltiea Rolle who finished with 23 points, 6 blocks, and 6 rebounds.

Delaware hit their free throws going 25-of-31 from the stripe, eventually stretching the lead to as many as 7 twice, before having to hold off a late North Carolina rally.

Trumae Lucas scored a career-high 19 points, including 4 steals, 4 rebounds, and 4 assists.

The game was back and forth early with the game tied at 9, before a 14-6 run gave the Tar Heels some breathing space.

Delaware responded by claiming leads at 30-29 and 32-31, but then a 12-0 run exclusively on Megan Buckland 3-pointers quickly put North Carolina up 43-32 before Delle Donne's buzzer-beating 3 before halftime.

As of Monday morning, there were only 1,300 tickets left for the Bridgeport Regional. You can order tickets at 203-345-2400 or websterbankarena.com. Connecticut is the No. 1 seed in the bracket so a sellout is likely.



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