WILMINGTON — Padua’s basketball team had managed a few close calls in its first nine games this season, including a one-point heartbreaker at Wilmington Friends, and on Feb. 12 the Pandas finally broke through. They connected on nine three-point shots in a convincing 65-44 win over Delaware Military Academy.
Sophia Manuel got the Seahawks off to a good start with a three-pointer, but once the Pandas got going after a steal and transition layup by Natalia Frabizzio, they were hard to stop. They used good ball control and a decided rebounding advantage to steadily build their lead.
Padua had scored just two points until Grace Trerotola hit her first three-pointer of the night off an inbounds pass with 4:10 to go. That put the Pandas ahead for good. A minute later, Kate MacLennan swished a triple. The Seahawks, meanwhile, got their shots, but there seemed to be a lid on their basket, and the Pandas collected most of the rebounds.
MacLennan opened the scoring in the second quarter with a nice spin move on a layup. The play was set up by Valerie McIntyre, who snuffed out a DMA shot at the other end. The Pandas hounded the Seahawks all night, and they spent much of the night running up and down the floor. Two more Trerotola threes helped the home team to a 30-14 halftime lead.
The second half began with some sustained up-and-back action. MacLennan drained a corner three, but the Seahawks responded as Riley Sullivan hit a cutting Graceyn Frost for a short field goal. Paige Degnan then hit a layup, and an Emily Trainer rebound led to another Degnan layup.
The points just kept on coming. Frabizzio spent much of the night driving the lane, but in the third quarter she hit two three-pointers. Anna Katherine Hughes and Ellie Standarowski both hit threes for the Seahawks, but Padua found more success with the two-point variety. DMA had its best offensive quarter in the fourth, but the deficit was too large to overcome.
Frabizzio led the way for Padua with 19 points. Trerotola finished with 14 points, including four three-point shots, and MacLennan also had 14. The Pandas (1-9) will play Saint Mark’s on Tuesday at 7:15 p.m. at Padua, but the Spartans will be the home team.
Ten players scored for the Seahawks, with Standarowski the high scorer with eight. DMA fell to 1-7 and will host First State Military Academy on Saturday at noon.
All photos by Mike Lang.