WILMINGTON – The final game of the four-day Diamond State Classic was the Delaware Cup championship featuring the host team, St. Elizabeth, against Mercy (Md.). The Vikings certainly did not want to disappoint, and they closed the party with a rousing 69-25 victory on Dec. 30 at the St. E Center.
The Vikings had beaten Charter School of Wilmington by 26 points two days before to earn a shot at the Delaware Cup title, but sophomore guard Ber’Nyah Ward-Mayo said something was missing from the team’s effort. That was not the case on Saturday, as St. Elizabeth made every pass and got to what seemed like every loose ball in a satisfying effort.
“We wanted to come back and bounce back and just focus more,” she said.
Ward-Mayo, the Delaware Cup most valuable player, continued her fantastic season, leading the way with 19 points, but her contributions were not limited to scoring. She helped her teammates get points with a number of assists, grabbed a handful of rebounds, and was a pest on defense as the Magic struggled to score.
It was Lauren Hines who started off the scoring, taking the opening tap and streaking down the court for an easy layup. Arianna Henry connected on a three-point shot, and Alexis Lee scored three the old-fashioned way as the Vikings began the night with an 8-0 run. All five starters were in the scoring column by the end of the first period as St. Elizabeth took a 20-4 lead.
Mercy finally found some success on offense in the second, as Jasmine Franklin scored eight of her team-leading 15. But the Magic had no answer for the Vikings’ fast-paced ball movement, including one play where Julie McCarron passed the ball to Ward-Mayo, who immediately flipped it to a cutting Alexis Lee for the easy hoop.
Lee and Hines joined Ward-Mayo in double figures with 16 and 13, respectively. St. Elizabeth (6-0) renews its rivalry at Catholic Conference nemesis Ursuline on Thursday at 7:15 p.m.