Richmond – The pregame line was Delaware minus 8 over Hofstra. But, anyone who knows how the Blue Hens and Pride have battled each other over the past several years knew this would be a grind it out and single-possession game for the majority of the contest.
For most of the game, the No. 7 seed Pride played well above their 4-14 conference record and really battled with the No. 2 Blue Hens. But, the less-talented team failed to win the intangibles battle—ultimately resulting in a 62-57 Delaware win.
When the game came down to the wire, Hofstra ultimately failed to take care of the basketball, could not convert a bevy of looks inside and came up empty from the foul line.
In the first half, the Pride were exceptional taking care of the basketball, only turning it over four times. After intermission, the Pride had eight turnovers as a team, each one seeming to come at a crucial point in the game.
Next, they won’t show up in the stat sheet or box score, but Hofstra failed to convert on several key attempts at the in the paint and close to the basket. Taran Buie drove hard to the rim and left it short, David Imes botched an easy putback and Moussa Kone shot a momentum-changing ball off the back iron—all within the last five minutes.
Lastly, the Pride as a team missed all five of their free throw attempts in the second half. They lost by five points.
“Foul shooting is one of those things where sometimes it’s a mental thing and sometimes it’s a physical thing,” Hofstra head coach Mo Cassara said. “Sometimes it’s a combination and unfortunately we missed a lot of free throws tonight. They really cost us the game.”
Less talented teams have to rely on smarts and doing the little things to win basketball games against more talented opponents. The Pride failed to do so and their time in Richmond for the Colonial Athletic Association tournament is over.