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Lady Monarchs Hold off Delaware for 54-52 Win in CAA Action

Courtesy: ODU Athletics
         
Release: February 11, 2010
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Feb. 11, 2010

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NORFOLK, Va. - Tia Lewis and Shadasia Green each scored in double-figures as Old Dominion survived a late Delaware charge in a 54-52 win at the Ted Constant Convocation Center Thursday evening.

For the second time in as many weeks, the Lady Monarchs (12-10, 10-2 CAA) took sole possession of first place in the league, coupling their win with a VCU loss to Hofstra earlier in the afternoon.

The loss was the fifth in the league for Delaware, by a combined nine points in all five games, as ODU narrowly escaped tonight with a two-point win. Old Dominion had a seven-point lead with under three minutes to play, but pressure defense and smart shooting pulled Delaware back within one with 1:17 to go. The Lady Monarchs staved off the run, holding Delaware empty on their final three possessions to get the victory.

ODU scored the first eleven points of the ball game in three minutes of play for a game-high 11-point lead. Sophomore Tia Lewis led the way early, scoring six points and hauling in three rebounds in the first six minutes while junior Jasmine Parker added three points and three assists.

Delaware rookie Elena Delle Donne would stop the run with a pair of free-throws and led the way for the Blue Hens in the first half, scoring 11 points and grabbing five rebounds. The Blue Hens shot 45% from the field in the first half to head into halftime up one, 28-27.

Coming out of the locker room, ODU again started the period on fire, with an 11-2 run to take back an eight-point lead. Senior Jessica Canady had the exclamation point on the early period run with a big three-point play. After a Delle Donne block and rebound, Canady stripped the ball away and went back up for a layup, fouled by the Delaware rookie on the way up. The bucket would count and she knocked down the ensuing free-throw to go up by eight, 38-30.

ODU would hold the 8-point advantage for much of the remainder, until the final three minutes when Delaware began to press. Delaware's trap would get to ODU, leading to a key run that would cut the lead to one with a minute to play. With 40 seconds left, Delaware's Tesia Harris was fouled, but would miss the front end of a one-and-one and ODU junior Shadasia Green hauled in the board for her ninth rebound of the game.

With ten seconds separating the game clock and shot clock, ODU would hold to just two seconds remaining on the shot clock before Canady launched a long jumper. The shot wouldn't fall, but Delaware's Eva Riddick fell out of bounds on the rebound, awarding ODU possession. Delaware was forced to foul one of ODU's top free-throw shooters in Parker; she would knock down the front end of her one-and-one free throw attempts with six seconds remaining and Delaware was unable to go the length of the floor on the miss for the last shot.

It was just the second time this season ODU had come back from a halftime deficit to win after coming back from eight down at Towson.

Lewis finished with a team-high 12 points on 6-of-10 shooting, while also grabbing seven rebounds in the contest. Green had 11 points and finished just one rebound shy of a double-double, while Parker set new career-high's in assists (9) and steals (6). The win gives ODU a regular season sweep of the series as the Lady Monarchs had defeated Delaware at home by one-point in the CAA opener earlier this season

Old Dominion earns their 99th win in the Ted Constant Convocation Center, bouncing back from a loss at home to VCU on Sunday. The Rams were upset earlier today at Hofstra, dropping out of first place and making way for ODU to earn sole possession atop the standings again.

Delle Donne finished just 7-of-19 from the field, but had a game-high 21 points and 10 rebounds, while also contributing five blocks. Tesia Harris also had double figures for Delaware, scoring 10 points.

ODU returns to play this Sunday as they travel to George Mason for the first of three games in the WBCA Pink Zone this season. Old Dominion's game against the Patriots will be broadcast on Comcast SportsNet at 2:00 p.m. and the coaches and players will be wearing pink to signify their support of the breast cancer and awareness initiative.

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