Bazemore Leads ODU Past Delaware, 88-74
Richmond, Va. - Senior Kent Bazemore scored 24 points to lead five players in double figures and Old Dominion held Delaware to just four field goals in the opening 12:56 of the second half as the fourth-seeded Monarchs downed No. 5 Delaware, 88-74, at the 2012 CAA Men's Basketball Championship on Saturday afternoon at the Richmond Coliseum.
Two-time defending champion ODU (20-12) will face top-seeded Drexel (26-5) on Sunday at 2:00 p.m. in semifinal action.
ODU opened the second half with a 13-4 run, fueled by Bazemore's third field goal from beyond the arc on the afternoon and a layup by senior Chris Cooper, to take a 60-46 lead at the 14:01 mark. Following a jumper by UD guard Devon Saddler, the Monarchs opened up their largest lead of the game at 78-60 on a thunderous dunk by senior Marquel De Lancey with 7:21 remaining in the contest. Cooper scored 12 of his 13 points in the second half, while guard Donte Hill added 15 points on 7-of-12 shooting as ODU scored the most points by a UD opponent since Jan. 19 and advanced to the semifinals for the fourth consecutive year.
Junior Nick Wright scored 12 points and Bazemore added nine rebounds and four assists for the Monarchs, who seek to become the first CAA program to claim three consecutive titles since Navy accomplished the feat in 1985-87. ODU enjoyed a 44-32 advantage on the glass in the contest and pulled down 20 offensive rebounds, leading to 23 second-chance points.
Vying for its first appearance in the semifinals since 2003, Delaware (18-13) was led by Saddler's 24 points, his 15th 20-point effort of the season. UD junior Jamelle Hagins added 12 points and a game-high 15 rebounds for his 15th double-double performance on the year. The loss snapped Delaware's nine-game winning streak, which was its longest since 1999.
ODU jumped out to a quick 5-0 lead to start the game and held a 29-24 advantage with 7:58 remaining in the opening half on a basket by freshman forward Richard Ross. However, the Blue Hens responded with six consecutive points and took a 30-29 lead at the 6:42 mark on freshman Kyle Anderson's three-pointer from the right corner, one of three field goals from beyond the arc for Anderson in the opening half.
Bazemore then scored the Monarchs' final six points of the half with a deep three-pointer from the top of the key and a traditional three-point play, giving ODU a 47-42 advantage at the intermission.