Eastern Round Up: Blue Hen Fever

When preseason prognosticators turned their attention to the Colonial Athletic Association, most of their crystal balls returned a picture of George Mason as the league favorite. Some may have seen Virginia Commonwealth and even Old Dominion may have been the result of a tarot reading or two but you didn't hear much support for the Blue Hens of Delaware. Yet another reason not to trust palm readers. Delaware is 4-0 in the CAA after knocking off George Mason 73-68 in overtime last night.

They did it in impressive fashion as well. Mason led by nine at the half and extended their lead to 47-28 in the early moments of the second half before Delaware turned up the heat. They went to a full-court press which rattled the Patriots into 15 second half turnovers and reopened the door to the game. Folarin Campbell, a senior guard who should be adept against all styles of defense, was the most profligate. He turned it over eight times as the Hens went on a 27-8 run to tie the game.

Marc Egerson led Delaware's offensive attack and finished with 23 points but it was foul shooting that gave them the win. They hit 10-of-12 from the stripe in the extra session, after going 12-for-22 up to that point. Delaware is 4-0 in the CAA for the first time since '98-99 and are the only undefeated team in the conference.

Elsewhere on the mid major hardcourts:

Davidson 59, Elon 57 - Stephen Curry played hero late to keep the Wildcats unbeaten in Southern Conference play. Down 57-54 with 1:38 to play, Curry hit a three to tie the game and then, following a steal, knocked down a jumper to provide the final margin of victory. Elon had several chances to tie or win the game in the final minute but missed all four attempts.

SE Louisiana 61, Sam Houston State 58 - Yipes! After spending the nonconference season raising their profile around the country, the Bearkats promptly turned around and laid an egg in the Southland opener. And at home, to boot. They play the kind of style that would make them a tough first-round opponent in March but they'll need to shoot better than 36% to make it that far.

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