Courtesy Vermont Sports Information
NEWARK, Del. – Andreana Thomas recorded career-high numbers against Delaware but it was not enough as the Catamounts fell to the Blue Hens 71-60 at the Bob Carpenter Center on Tuesday evening. Vermont drops to 4-7 and Delaware improves to 5-5.
“Other than shooting the ball better, I was really pleased with the way we played tonight,” said head coach Lori Gear McBride. “We fought back and closed the gap to a single possession a few times in the fourth quarter and defended much better over the last 20 minutes, which allowed us to keep it close.”
Thomas posted a career-high and game-best 26 points, shooting 50-percent (9-for-18) and going 4-for-4 from the foul line. Sydney Smith added 10 points with two 3-pointers and four rebounds.
“There was a lot of fight in this team and I thought Dre (Thomas) played a tremendous game tonight,” McBride noted. “Her experience and athleticism really carried us at times.”
Hannah Jardine paced Delaware’s offense with 18 points as four Blue Hens found themselves in double-digit scoring. Erika Brown registered 16 points and Courtni Green recorded 14 points.
Vermont played a confident first quarter at the Carpenter Center taking an early 11-9 lead over the Blue Hens. Repeat pull-up jumpers by Brown shifted the advantage to Delaware. The Blue Hens connected on six of their last eight field goals to create a 3-point cushion, up 18-15 to close out the first 10 minutes.
Delaware extended its lead to as much as nine with six minutes remaining in the half and held the Catamounts to 1-for-6 from the field. Nicole Enabosi sunk a pair from the free throw line with a minute remaining to put the Blue Hens ahead 32-25 after one half. Delaware shot 54-percent (13-for-24) in the first half but UVM claimed the 17-15 edge on the boards.
Two triples by Green quickly lifted the Blue Hens over Vermont 40-28 three minutes into the second half. Hayley Robertson dribbled to the charity stripe and pulled up for a jumper to slice the Delaware advantage to single digits, 43-34 with 4:11 remaining in the third. Thomas controlled the final UVM possession of the quarter and dropped a shot from behind the arc to keep Vermont within reach of Delaware (51-43) with one quarter left to play.
UVM crept closer to Delaware and found itself within three (51-48) with eight minutes left on the clock. Despite the Catamounts closing in on multiple single-possession opportunities, a final UD push in the last five minutes closed the 11-point game in Delaware’s favor.
“This has been a tough stretch with finals and travel but to go into the Christmas break having won three of four, the key will be to carry the improvement over into our next game at BU,” McBride said. “We will work to be better heading into the start of conference-play.”
Vermont concludes its holiday road trip next week when the Catamounts head to Boston to take on former conference foe Boston University on Monday, Dec. 28. Tip-off is scheduled for 1 p.m. UVM returns to Patrick Gym for a final non-conference matchup against Oakland on Wednesday, Dec. 30 at 2 p.m.
Radio coverage in Boston begins 20 minutes prior to tip-off at 12:40 p.m. on WVMT 620-AM and SportsJuice.com with Alastair Ingram calling the action.