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Lady Monarchs Defeat Delaware In A Thriller, 60-57

Courtesy: ODU Athletics
         
Release: February 19, 2006
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Feb. 19, 2006

Box Score

NEWARK, Del. -- Junior Tish Lyons' (Newports News, Va.) clutch free throw in the final seconds of Sunday's game clinched the Old Dominion women's basketball teams' 14th straight victory in a 60-57 thriller against the University of Delaware Sunday afternoon at the Bob Carpenter Center. The game marked the first time since last year's thrilling overtime CAA Tournament finale that these two teams have met.

Leading by two, 54-52, with 31 seconds left in the game, Lyons came up with a huge play as a T.J. Jordan (Portsmouth, Va.) three-pointer was off its mark. The ball landed right into the hands of Lyons, who was right underneath the basket to give Old Dominion a four-point edge.

Delaware's Tyresa Smith cut the Blue Hen deficit to two, 56-54, with 23 seconds remaining on the ensuing play. With Old Dominion having possession of the ball, Delaware was forced to foul senior Lawona Davis (Port St. Lucie, Fla.). One of the Lady Monarchs' best free throw shooters missed the front end of a one-and-one sending the teams to the floor trying to grab the rebound. The ball went out of bounds back to the Lady Monarchs where the Blue Hens were once again forced to foul. Lyons went to the line and hit both free throws in a one-and-one situation as Old Dominion held on to a 58-54 lead with 18 seconds remaining.

The Blue Hens still battled back and Alena Koshanksy got off a three-point attempt. The ball missed its target, but Amanda Blackstone grabbed the rebound and was fouled as she put the ball up and in. She sank her free throw and cut the Old Dominion edge to one, 58-57, with eight seconds left in the game.

Once again, with Old Dominion in possession of the ball, Delaware was forced to foul putting Lyons back at the line. With only three seconds remaining, Lyons sank both her free throws to seal the game for the 60-57 Lady Monarch victory. The Blue Hens barely had time left for a desperation heave at the final second that fell way short of its target.

The loss dropped the Fightin' Blue Hens to 18-6 overall and 10-5 in the CAA. The defeat also gave Delaware it first home loss of the 2005-06 season after emerging victorious in all 10 previous games. Meanwhile, Old Dominion continues to be the front-runner in the CAA race with a 14-0 league mark and 16-7 overall record.

Lyons led all scorers with 18 points and going a perfect 5-of-5 from the line. After being held scoreless in the first half, Jordan poured in 14 second-half points. Jordan, who went 7-of-12 for 28 points last year at the Bob Carpenter Center, opened the game 0-for-6 in half number one. Half number two proved to be a different story as she connected on four of her seven attempts from beyond the arc. Junior Sherida Triggs (Norcross, Ga.) was also held scoreless in the first half, only to rebound with her fourth double-double of the year. Triggs ended the game with 10 points and 12 boards.

For Delaware, Melissa Czorniewy came away with 14 points, while Tyresa Smith captured 11. Courtney Irving came off the bench to add in 13 points. Amanda Blackstone nearly missed a double-double, finishing the afternoon with nine points and a team-high nine rebounds.

After both teams took turns taking the lead through the game's first seven minutes, an Irving lay-up with 12:51 left in the first half gave the Blue Hens a lead they would not relinquish until midway through the second half. Delaware led by as many as six in the first half and had a six-point edge with eight seconds left until the half. However, Lyons snuck in a three at the buzzer as Old Dominion went into the locker room's down, 24-21.

Delaware started out the second half on fire, opening up on an 8-2 run giving the Fightin' Blue Hens a nine-point, 32-23 lead with 18:15 on the clock. The tables turned though as Old Dominion outscored Delaware 14-4 over the next seven minutes. A three-pointer by Jordan, her second of the afternoon, returned the lead to the Lady Monarchs, 37-36, with 11:03 left to play.

The game would be tied up four times as time began winding down. Tied at 47-47, Old Dominion used free throwing by Triggs and a Paula Muxiri (Luanda, Angola) three-pointer to take a five-point edge, 47-52, with 4:08 remaining. The Blue Hens would not go quietly, setting up the dramatic finish.

The Lady Monarchs return home for their final two home games of the regular season. Old Dominion hosts Virginia Commonwealth on Friday at 7:00 p.m. and William & Mary on Sunday at 2:00 p.m. for the regular season home finale.

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