Local college notebook: Freshman guard Horton making big impact with Blue Hens

Ithiel Horton, a 6-foot-3, 200-pound true freshman shown dunking in the Blue Hens’ season opener at Maryland, has tallied 20 points in back-to-back games. That includes a season-high 22-point night in Delaware’s 80-65 loss to Navy on Wednesday. Delaware sports information/Mark Campbell

Ithiel Horton admits he was a little jittery before playing his first college basketball game.

And who could blame the Delaware true freshman guard?

Horton made his college debut at Maryland on Nov. 6.

“Nervous? That’s an understatement,” Horton said after the game. “I did a lot of things to prepare for this game. I talked to my mom before the game, talking about anxiety and all that stuff. It was crazy.

“She was like, ‘Don’t worry about it. You know how to play. Just go out there and play.’”

Ithiel Horton

Horton’s mom was right. Her son looked pretty comfortable scoring 10 points in the Blue Hens’ 73-67 loss to the Terps and only seems to have gotten better since.

Now a starter, the 6-foot-3, 200-pound Roselle Catholic (N.J.) grad has tallied 20 points in back-to-back games. That includes a season-high 22-point night in Delaware’s 80-65 loss to Navy on Wednesday.

Horton has scored in double figures in all but one game for the Hens (7-3), who host St. Francis, Pa. on Sunday at 2 p.m. He’s second on the team at 14 points per game and leads the Hens with 24 three-pointers on 52 attempts.

After having turned out the last two Colonial Athletic Association Rookies of the Year (Ryan Daly, Ryan Allen), the Hens look like they have a contender to make it three in a row.

Downstate fans may remember Horton from last year’s Slam Dunk to the Beach when he and his Roselle Catholic teammates downed Smyrna, 87-69.

“I love this state, I kind of wish I was from here,” Horton said after the game at Cape Henlopen. “It’s amazing.

“Delaware sits perfect,” he added. “People kind of overlook Delaware. I used to drive past Delaware every day and was like ‘Wow I wonder what that campus is like.’ So when they offered me I knew I wanted to go visit. The facilities are great, academics are really good and the basketball team is coming up. Coach (Martin) Ingelsby is a great coach.”

Wrestlers off to hot starts

Zack Parker

Two Kent County products have already won individual championships as the college wrestling season got underway last month.

Zack Parker of Ohio University won the 285-pound title at the Navy Classic while Brent Fleetwood of North Dakota State took first place in the Cal State Bakersfield Roadrunner open in the 125-pound bracket.

Brent Fleetwood

Parker, a Caesar Rodney High grad, also placed third at the Michigan State open for Ohio last month. The senior is also unbeaten in dual-meet competition so far this year.

Fleetwood, a Smyrna product who was a four-time state champion in high school, is in his first year wrestling for North Dakota State after transferring from Central Michigan. He sat out last season in accordance with NCAA transfer regulations.

The senior is 11-2 this year with one pin, one tech fall and three major decisions.

Duo pacing Wesley men

The Wesley College men’s basketball team has a pretty good 1-2 scoring punch in Brian Cameron and Evan Anderson.

The two guards are second and third in the Atlantic East Conference in scoring. Cameron is averaging 21.4 points per game while Anderson is scoring 20.3.

After netting 31 points in the Wolverines’ season opener against Division I Towson, Anderson followed it up with 32 points against Centenary on Nov. 28. He’s hit at least four three-pointers in four games this season.

Cameron, on the other hand, has finished with 20 or more points in five of Wesley’s eight games. He’s twice netted 28 points in a contest.

Wesley (4-4) has won four of its last five games heading into a matchup with former conference rival Salisbury on Sunday. The two teams square off in Salisbury, Md. at 4 p.m.

The Wolverines host Misericodria on Dec. 19 at 1 p.m. in a rare weekday afternoon contest. But that’s their only home game between Dec. 1 and Jan. 19.

Extra points

• Dover High grad Jordan Allen, a redshirt sophomore on the Rider men’s basketball team, poured in 24 points, with six three-pointers, in a win over Wagner two weeks ago. After four games, he’s second on the Broncos (2-2) at 14.5 points per game.

• Under the NCAA rule that allows athletes to play in up to four games and still redshirt, former Smyrna High standout Will Knight ran for 118 yard and a TD on 27 carries as a true freshman at Old Dominion this fall. He also picked up 95 yards on seven catches.

• Along with looking for a new offensive coordinator, Delaware football coach Danny Rocco has to replace receivers coach/passing game coordinator Erik Campbell, who was recently hired as the receivers coach at Bowling Green.

Leddie Brown, who spent his junior season at Smyrna High, is third on the team in rushing for West Virginia. The true freshman has run for 433 yards and four TDs on 87 carries. He also caught a 15-yard scoring pass.

• The Delaware State men’s basketball team is ranked 353rd, last in Division I, by the advanced metrics website kenpom.com. The Hornets host Jacksonville State today at 5:30 p.m.

• Milford High product Brion Murray was recently offered a football scholarship by Texas Tech. He is currently playing for Coffeyville Community College, a junior college in Kansas, and also has an official visit to Virginia Tech lined up.

• Two Woodbridge High grads have played in every game this year for the Arkansas State football team. Dajon Emory has 9.5 tackles for loss and 4.5 sacks while Logan Wescott has 26 tackles. Arkansas State plays Nevada in the Arizona Bowl to wrap up its season on Dec. 29.

• Former University of Delaware guard Kory Holden made his debut with his new team, South Alabama last week. Holden transferred from Delaware to South Carolina before moving to South Alabama for this year. He scored 28 points in his first game, against Southern Miss.

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