Perfect Records On The Line Sunday Between Bona & Delaware
Delaware (3-0) @ St. Bonaventure (4-0)
Sunday, Nov. 27 | 1 PM | Reilly Center (5,480)
Game Notes: St. Bonaventure | Delaware | Atlantic 10
In-Game Updates: @Go_Bonnies | #Bonnies
After opening the season with four games in nine days in four different cities, the undefeated women's basketball team plays its first game in a week against visiting Delaware on Sunday.
UD is also undefeated and Receiving Votes in the national polls. The Blue Hens are ranked No. 27 in the Associated Press Poll with 79 votes, and No. 32 in the ESPN/USA Today Poll, garnering 13 votes.
While still very early in the season, the Bonnies and Blue Hens are also both ranked in the top-10 in the nation in the RealTime RPI rankings. Delaware checks in as the No. 2 team, while the Bonaventure is No. 7.
Both St. Bonaventure and Delaware take extremely good care of the basketball as the Blue Hens turn the ball over an average of 10 times per game, while the Bonnies give it away just 12 times per contest.
While Delaware is averaging 77.7 points per game, it averages just 3.7 made 3-pointers per outing, which is an increase from last year when it ranked 326 out of 343 Division I schools with just 2.8 3-pointers per game. The Blue Hens have made 11 3-pointers on the year; comparatively, Bona senior Jessica Jenkins has made 13 3-pointers of her own.
Experience is common theme in this matchup as Delaware returns 98.8 percent of its scoring from last year, while St. Bonaventure brings back 92 percent of its scoring from last season. Both teams have four seniors on their respective rosters.
Head coach Jim Crowley enters the contest with UD just three victories shy of winning his 200th career game. Crowley is currently 197-211 overall and 158-174 at St. Bonaventure in his 12th year at the helm of the Bonnies. Furthermore, 44.9 percent of his 158 wins at Bona's have come in the last 3+ years (71). Crowley is already the winningest coach in Bona history.
The Bonnies are coming off a 79-55 win over Morgan State last Sunday at the Reilly Center. In that game, sophomores CeCe Dixon (15 points) and Doris Ortega (13) set scoring career highs, and all 11 players on the Bona roster scored. Included in that, freshman Tatiana Wilson, sophomore Ashley Zahn and junior transfer Jordan McGee all scored for the first time in the 2011-12 season.
The win against Morgan State got Bonaventure off to a 4-0 start for the sixth time in school history. Five of those six occasions have come in the last seven years. The only other season a Bona team got off to a 4-0 start was the 1992-93 club.
~ UD beat Atlantic 10 member Rhode Island, 89-53, in its season opener
~ The Blue Hens were picked to win the Colonial Athletic Association Championship
~ Delaware went 20-14 last year and qualified for the WNIT
~ With her 281 wins, head coach Tina Martin is the winningest coach, either men's or women's, in school history
Elena Delle Donne
Delaware boasts one the best players in women's college basketball in Elena Delle Donne. Following her senior year of high school in 2008, Delle Donne was named the consensus national High School Player of the Year. Now a junior, the former Connecticut transfer returned to her home state after not even a week on the Storrs campus. Per NCAA transfer rules, she was not eligible to play basketball her first year at Delaware, so she joined the volleyball team and helped the Blue Hens to a 2008-09 conference championship. As a freshman in February 2010, she scored a school record 54 points against James Madison, and earlier this year already tallied 40 in an upset of No. 11/12 Penn State. A Preseason All American this year, she is averaging 31.7 points per game, and in just 54 career games has scored 1,426 points for a 26.4 average. She is the second fastest player in NCAA history to reach the 1,000-point mark, doing so in just 38 games. Additionally, this past summer she was a member of the Team USA World University Games squad, leading the USA to gold with a team-best 15.7 points and 8.5 rebounds over a six-game stretch.
St. Bonaventure will once again hit the road as it heads to Kent State for a meeting with the Golden Flashes on Wednesday night. The Bonnies will then head down Interstate 86 for a matchup with Binghamton on Saturday afternoon. It will be the second time already this year that the Brown and White will play three games in three different cities in seven days.