After edging out Boston University at home on Nov. 20th, the Red headed to Newark, Del., on Tuesday, Nov. 22 hoping to earn its first road win of the season. Last year Cornell (2-4) notched a 75-61 victory over Delaware (2-2) in the 2010 season opener at Newman Arena. This year, however, it was the Blue Hens’ turn to take the home victory, edging out the Red, 72-64.
Senior guard Drew Ferry kicked off the night with a steal that resulted in a 3-pointer just 37 seconds into the game. Delaware’s Kyle Anderson quickly equalized with a shot from behind the arc to tie the score. Less than a minute later, Cornell reclaimed the lead with a layup by junior forward Eitan Chemerinski.
“Any time you’re losing I think by definition you don’t have a lot of momentum,” said senior co-captain and guard Chris Wroblewski. “But we’re going to get back to practice and work hard.”
The remaining 18 minutes of the first half were marked by multiple shifts in momentum, with the Blue Hens building as much as a nine point lead over the Red — though Cornell was able to tie the score three more times. Delaware led the Red, 28-26, as the pace picked up and the teams headed into the second half.
“We want to keep the game moving as fast as we can but stay in control,” said junior forward Josh Figini. “We might look into pressing a little more — it seemed to be pretty effective at the end.”
The Blue Hens were able to hold the Red off the scoreboard at the beginning of the second period, but junior guard Miles Asafo-Adjei tied the game for the fifth time at 28-28 with a driving layup. Less than 20 seconds later Delaware reclaimed the lead with a layup of its own before freshman forward Shonn Miller made good from behind the arc, vaulting the Red ahead of the Blue Hens, 31-30. This was one of the last times that the Red laid claim to the lead in the contest.
Cornell was able to tie the game up on a total of six occasions; however, the Red was unable to expand its lead past the initial 3-pointer from Ferry to begin the game. With under four minutes remaining in play, Ferry hit another 3-pointer to regain a one-point edge over Delaware, 58-57; however, this lead did not last. The Blue Hens exploded with a 15-point scoring spree, while the Red only picked up an additional six off of a pair of layups by Asafo-Adjei and two free throws from Miller. The Red converted on 9-of-15 free-throw attempts for the night, compared to the 18-of-36 made by the Blue Hens. Cornell also led the night in personal fouls, 20-15.
“It is something we do [full court press],” said head coach Bill Courtney. “We probably would’ve had it on a little earlier in the half if we had got to the foul line a little more. It’s something we use in foul situations,but also on made field goals.”
While Cornell dropped to 2-3 for the season after the loss to Delaware, some players were able to improve their individual statistics in the defeat and achieve new school records. Wroblewski recorded three steals on the night, which earned him the distinction of being the 15th player in school history to reach 100 career steals. The senior also added four points to his career total, leaving him 84 points shy of becoming the school’s 24th 1,000-point scorer. Of the four points the co-captain tallied during the game, two came from free throws, pushing the guard past the 200 mark for his career.
Chemerinski continued to impress, notching 12 points to increase his season total to 57 — 21 more points than he recorded in his first two seasons combined. The junior has reached double figures in for four straight games.
Despite the impressive individual accomplishments, Courtney recognizes that it will be difficult for his squad to regain momentum after a tough road loss.
“It’s tough to build momentum any time you lose,” he said.