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Univ. of Delaware earns spot in NCAA women's basketball tournament

Colonial Athletic Association

The University of Delaware is sending another team to the NCAA tournament.

The UD women’s basketball team punched its tourney ticket Sunday, defeating Drexel 63-59 in the CAA championship game at Drexel.

They are a 13 seed and will play 4 seed Maryland in the first round Friday on Maryland's home floor in College Park, Maryland.

They join the men’s hoop team in heading to the NCAA tournament, marking the first time in school history both basketball teams reached their respective tourneys in the same season.

CAA Player of the Year Jasmine Dickey carried the Blue Hens to victory Sunday, posting 27 points and 18 rebounds in the Blue Hen' CAA Championship game win.

The win avenges last year's loss to Drexel in the CAA final and puts Delaware’s women in NCAA tourney for the fifth time in team history and first time since 2013.

"We finished the job," said UD head coach Natasha Adair. "We talked about this since last year. Everyday we worked. We said the road back to here was going to be the hardest road. As long as we stayed the course. As long as we stayed together. Everything along the journey was going to prepare us for this day,"

"We remembered that feeling that we had last year. It hurt," said Dickey. "We didn't want to be in that position anymore. We told ourselves we were going to fight. We weren't leaving here without a ring."

The Blue Hens' last NCAA tournament in 2013 was their best, posting two wins to reach the Sweet 16 behind Elena Delle Donne.

To match that kind of run this year, UD will need to find a way to beat Maryland. The Blue Hens are winless all-time against Terrapins, losing all six previous meetings. The most recent showdown produced a 99-55 Maryland win in November 2019.

Tom Byrne has been a fixture covering news in Delaware for three decades. He joined Delaware Public Media in 2010 as our first news director and has guided the news team ever since. When he's not covering the news, he can be found reading history or pursuing his love of all things athletic.