Delaware Blue Coats Hold off the Raptors 905 Twice to Sweep the Weekend

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Blue Coats's Braxton Key dunking the ball with Jaden Springer trailing behind him. Key would score eight of his ten points in the second game during the fourth quarter. Sunday, Nov. 28, 2021. - Staff Photographer / Joey Nicolo

The Delaware Blue Coats had their first back-to-back games of the season against the Raptors 905 at Chase Fieldhouse this past weekend. A familiar face returned to town to help the Coats as they picked up two straight victories.

Former Blue Coat and G League Most Valuable Player and Rookie of the Year, Paul Reed was assigned to Delaware from the Philadelphia 76ers for the weekend. In both games, he was one of the leading scorers for Delaware. 

In the first game on Saturday afternoon, the Blue Coats defeated the Raptors 120-94. Despite the 26-point margin of victory, the game was a lot closer than what the final score reflected.

For the first two quarters, it was a tight game with 15 lead changes. By the end of the half, the Blue Coats headed into the locker room leading only by three at 56-53.

In the third quarter, the Blue Coats started to pull away, as they outscored the Raptors by 11 points to bring their lead to 89-75. After the game, starter Charlie Brown Jr. addressed what the difference was in the second half.

“We said it ourselves, it was our energy. Coming out, we played kind of nonchalant,” Brown Jr. said. “During halftime, we all came together and said what the problems were, what the issues were. So we came back in the second half and did what we said we would. We played with high energy.”

The team’s second-half energy secured their first win of the weekend and they brought that energy into the second game on Sunday. To start the day, the Blue Coats got on a 15-3 run and ended the first quarter up 37-22.

After the first quarter, it seemed like Delaware could run away with the game. The Raptors started to cut into their lead though and with less than four minutes in the third quarter, the 905 took the lead for the first time that day. 

“I thought we started the game with great energy,” Blue Coats’ Braxton Key said. “First quarter I think we were up 21, 22 points and then it’s a game of runs, that’s how basketball is. They got hot– started hitting some tough shots.”

Going into the fourth quarter, Delaware was down by two. Key credited some defensive plays as one of the reasons they were able to keep the Raptors from running away with the lead. 

“I think Tra-Deon Hollins came in and gave us a great lift. [He] brought everyone’s energy up,” Key said. “He just sped their guards up a little bit, got them to turn the ball over a little bit and that got us going really.”

After some back and forth play, with less than seven minutes left in the game, the Blue Coats took back the lead and this time for good. Head Coach Coby Karl praised Key for his big plays in the fourth quarter, which helped them take and keep the lead.

“Braxton, right in the middle of that fourth quarter sparked us to help us win the game, I think he started getting stops, obviously the block at the rim was a highlight play,” Coach Karl said. “He played with a high level of energy in that fourth quarter.”

The final on Sunday was 114-106 in favor of Delaware, which brought their record to 6-1.

Paul Reed, during his short stint with the Blue Coats, scored 49 points over these two games, picked up 11 rebounds in both games, and had four blocked shots in the second half alone on Sunday. 

Key, who played with Reed last season, was happy to have him back, even if it was just for a short time.

“Definitely great for him to be back,” Key said. “Not sure how long he’ll be here after the past two games he had, but we’ll definitely have him as long as we have him here.”

Reed did get recalled back to Philly on Monday. For now, he is no longer with the Blue Coats. The rest of the team will now prepare for their next game against the Long Island Nets at home on Saturday night. 

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