Delgado’s play in post lifts Mesa women

DANIELLE STOMBERG/The Daily Sentinel
HEATHER HABEKOST SCORES TWO of her seven points Saturday in Mesa State’s 64-54 victory over Dominican (Calif.) at Brownson Arena.



The Mesa State College women’s basketball team may be guard-oriented, but it was post player Stephanie Delgado who led the Mavericks to victory.

The 5-foot-11 senior was a force inside on both ends of the floor, leading the Mavericks (2-2) to a 64-54 victory over Dominican (Calif.) University (1-6) on Saturday in the Holiday Inn Thanksgiving Tip-Off at Brownson Arena.

“If we get the ball in the paint, we’re bound to get something out of it,” Delgado said. “We wanted to make them work for it on defense. Playing inside out is our strength.”

Delgado led all scorers with 19 points. She made 7 of 8 free throws.

“Delgado did a great job in the post,” Mesa State coach Timi Brown said. “When you get the ball in the paint, good things happen.”

Kelsey Janusch led Dominican with 12 points before fouling out. Raquel Gomes and Alisha Flaaten each scored 11. Gomes had 12 rebounds.

Delgado’s play in the paint was needed with Mesa State shooting 31 percent from the floor.

“It was a grind-it-out game,” Brown said. “We made plays down the stretch.”

The Mavericks hit free throws too, making 27 of 34 for the game, including 12 of 16 in the second half.

“I thought the officials did a consistent job calling the hand check,” Brown said. “We were aggressive off the dribble. We were being aggressive, but we need to with more purpose.”

Dominican, which shot 27.9 percent from the floor, built a 21-14 early lead on the strength of five 3-pointers.

Mesa went on a 15-4 run to take a 29-25 lead but Dominican rallied to tie the game 29-29 at halftime.

The Mavericks went on a 10-2 run to start the second half to build a 39-31 lead with good defense.

“We made some adjustments at halftime,” Brown said. “We needed to do a better job man-to-man.”

The defensive pressure started with Abby Hancock getting in the face of the Penguins’ 3-pointer shooters.

“It helps me that I’m bigger than most guards,” Hancock said. “I come in thinking defense, defense, defense. When you’re not scoring, you can always play defense.

“I stand by the fact I was recruited for defense. I love playing defense. The coaches always say,
if you can play defense, you will play.”

Mesa pushed its lead up to 11 when Alaina Brennan hit a 3- pointer.

“I called a set at the timeout,” Brown said. “Whoever set the screen and got Alaina open made it
happen. Alaina can shoot it when she has time.”

Mesa led 53-40 when Dominican hit back-to-back 3-pointers and got within five with 1:26 left.

Delgado, though, made sure the Penguins wouldn’t get any closer, scoring inside to go back up 61-54. Heather Habekost hit 3 of 4 free throws to seal the victory.

CHADRON STATE 98, JOHNSON & WALES 70

Johnson & Wales committed 31 fouls and the Eagles took advantage of the free shots.

Chadron State (2-3) made 36 of 48 free throws (75 percent), including 22 of 26 in the second half as the Eagles went on a 16-5 run to build a double-digit lead.

Alyssa Lyman led Chadron with 27 points, including 11 at the foul line. Sunni Busch scored 19, grabbed six rebounds and dished out six assists. Kristy Long added 18.

Andrea Austin led the Wildcats (2-8) with 20 points and 10 rebounds. Patricia Weldon had 19 points before fouling out.


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