Determined Blue Hens overcome Drexel rally

By Sean Greene 8:32pm, March 3, 2013
VIDEO: Highlights and Reaction from Delaware vs. Drexel
Lauren Carra hit a pair of free throws with 53 seconds left to break a tie and boost No. 18 Delaware to a hard-fought 62-57 victory over rival Drexel Sunday at the Bob Carpenter Center.

Delaware led 52-40 with 5:53 remaining after an Elena Delle Donne jumper, only to watch the Dragons quickly respond with a 14-2 sprint in under three minutes to tie the game thanks to three 3-pointers, including a pair by freshman Rachel Pearson.

The teams then traded three pointers, with Lauren Carra giving the Hens a 3-point lead only to see Pearson nail yet another trifecta to knot the game at 57 with 1:20 left.

The veteran Blue Hens (25-3, 16-0 CAA) then clamped down defensively, holding the Dragons scoreless on their last three possessions.

While the defense was doing their thing, Lauren Carra was able to drive to the basket, drawing a foul from Hollie Mershon, and the senior calmly hit two free throws to put Delaware ahead 59-57.

Carra then forced a steal on the ensuing possession, only to travel while in the front court.

Drexel (20-7, 13-3 CAA) then put the ball in the hands of Mershon in a one-on-one match up with Delle Donne. Mershon drove the right side of the lane, and put up a running right handed shot while trying to ward off Delaware's 6'5" center. The shot bounced off the back side of the rim, into the hands of Delle Donne who then made a pair of free throws to make it a two score game, and clinch Delaware's 21st straight victory.

Delaware jumped out to a quick 11-2 start, sparked by a Carra basket after Delle Donne won the opening tip right to the senior. Drexel eventually used an 11-2 run late in the half to take a 25-22 advantage, before Delaware scored the last two baskets of the opening 20 minutes to lead 26-25 at the break.

Delle Donne finished with 28 points, 10 rebounds, and 3 blocks for Delaware, with Carra connecting for 21 points including 3-of-6 from outside the arc.

Drexel's Mershon ended with 26 points on 11-of-30 shooting, filling her box score with 6 assists, 5 rebounds, and three steals.

Delaware has now beaten Drexel 6 straight times, with this one snapping the Dragon's 4-game winning streak.

The Blue Hens wrap up their regular season Wednesday on Senior Night when they face Georgia State at 7pm at the Bob Carpenter Center.

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