Delle Donne sets milestone, Blue Hens advance
Newark, DE – Elena Delle Donne poured in 33 points to reach the 1,000-point plateau for her career as the sixth-seed Delaware Blue Hens took care of the 11th-seed West Virginia Mountaineers, 66-53, in the first round of the NCAA Tournament at the Bob Carpenter Center.
Delle Donne, a first-team All-American, also collected seven boards and blocked four shots for Delaware (31-3). Kelsey Buchanan added 10 points off the bench and Danielle Parker collected 11 rebounds and four steals for the Blue Hens who awaits North Carolina in the next round.
Ayana Dunning had a double-double of 15 points and 10 rebounds, Taylor Palmer tallied 13 points and Linda Stepney had 10 points and four assists for West Virginia (17-14).
At halftime it was West Virginia that owned a 33-26 lead after holding the Blue Hens to just 38.7 percent shooting in the first 20 minutes.
Delaware came out of the gates in the second half with a 10-0 run to reclaim the lead, one it would not surrender. The Blue Hens held the Mountaineers to just seven field goals in the final 20 minutes while hitting 18-of-20 attempts from the free-throw line.
Turnovers loomed large in the contest with the Blue Hens guilty of only nine while scoring 18 points off of 17 miscues for the Mountaineers.