The Drexel University men’s basketball team (10-12 overall, 4-5 in the Colonial Athletic Association Conference) traveled to Newark, Delaware Jan. 26 to play the University of Delaware (14-8 overall, 6-3 CAA). Throughout the first half of the game, Drexel struggled to keep up with the Blue Hens, and they entered halftime trailing by a score of 44-33. The Dragons went down by as many as 15 in the first half. Delaware was fueled by their long-range shot, hitting nine three-pointers while shooting 59% overall from the field.
The beginning of the second half felt eerily similar to the first half, with Delaware in clear control while maintaining a strong lead. With just 2:16 left in the game, the Dragons were down 74-61. It seemed as though the game was over, and Drexel was going to sub in their bench. The Dragons’ head coach Zach Spiker and his team had other plans, however, as they continued their season-long theme of late comebacks. Drexel exploded for a 9-0 run led by graduate transfer Trevor John, senior Troy Harper, freshman Camren Wynter and junior Alihan Demir. The Dragons pulled within one with just three seconds left after John hit yet another three-pointer. Delaware’s Ithiel Horton missed his free throw and Demir grabbed the clutch rebound to give Drexel life, but a quick turnover resulted in a frustrating Delaware win.
Despite the loss, Drexel showed a lot of grit coming back late in the game against a quality opponent like Delaware. The Dragons stepped up defensively forcing five turnovers during the comeback and 15 turnovers in the second half overall. Unfortunately, Delaware sophomore Ryan Allen was just too much for the Dragons as he finished the game with 26 points, including four three-pointers. The leading scorer for Drexel was Harper, who finished with 16 points and four assists.
Drexel’s next game was on the road against CAA opponent the College of William & Mary Jan. 31 (7-14 overall,CAA 3-6). William & Mary took an early lead in the first six minutes of the first half but Drexel came storming back to finish the period ahead 39-31. However, William & Mary tied it up at 43 with 14:39 left to play and then soon took the lead. Drexel came back to retake the lead with just over four minutes to go, but it was short-lived. William & Mary came back and won 75-69.
The men’s basketball team will travel to Elon University Feb. 2 before returning home to host the University of North Carolina Wilmington Feb. 7 and the College of Charleston Feb. 9.