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Hofstra advances to CAA finals

Hofstra forward Elo Edeferioka grabs a loose ball

Hofstra forward Elo Edeferioka grabs a loose ball during women's basketball team practice at Mack Sports Complex. (Oct. 29, 2013) Credit: James Escher

Forward Elo Edeferioka had 12 points and a season-high 16 rebounds as the Hofstra women's basketball team led wire-to-wire in a 45-42 win over Delaware in a Colonial Athletic Association Tournament semifinal Saturday at Show Place Arena in Upper Marlboro, Maryland.

Third-seeded Hofstra advanced to its first CAA title game, where it will face top-seeded James Madison at 1 p.m. Sunday.

The Pride improved to 20-11 by knocking off seventh-seeded Delaware (15-17). Hofstra had its first 20-win season since 2009-10 and the third under coach Krista Kilburn-Steveskey.

Hofstra sophomore guard Krystal Luciano scored eight points and fellow sophomore guard Kelly Loftus added seven.

Delaware's Courtni Green scored a game-high 14 points, while Hofstra established itself inside and wound up with a 28-12 points advantage in the paint.

Hofstra held Delaware to 27.5 percent shooting (14-for-51) and led by as many as 15.

Edeferioka, also a sophomore, posted her seventh double-double of the season and again dominated in the post. Along with her rebounding, she shot 5-for-8, blocked four shots and made three steals.

Hofstra won two games in the CAA Tournament for the first time since joining the league for the 2001-02 campaign.

James Madison is 26-3, with one of those losses to the visiting Pride on Feb. 22. That day, Hofstra defeated the then 23rd-ranked Dukes, 63-62, to split the regular season series.

After Hofstra took an 11-point halftime lead, Delaware responded by going on a 6-0 run to start the second half while the Pride missed six of its first seven shots after the break. The Blue Hens narrowed the deficit to 29-24 with 15:39 left.

Delaware got to within 33-30, but Luciano responded by flipping in a scoop shot while getting fouled. She completed the three-point play to increase Hofstra's lead to 36-30.

Delaware moved back within four before an Edeferioka bucket made it 43-37.

The Blue Hens' Jodi Salyer hit a jumper to cut the Pride's lead to four before Hofstra guard Asia Jackson hit a layup.

Delaware's Green hit a three-pointer with 2:48 left that made it 45-42.


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