Local college notebook: Ingelsby keeping tabs on team, possible rule changes

Off-seasons haven’t always been uneventful for the Delaware men’s basketball team lately.

The Blue Hens have had some good young players transfer to higher-profile programs over the last four seasons.

That group includes Kory Holden (South Carolina), Ryan Daly (St. Joe’s) and Ithiel Horton (Pitt).

While having players come and go isn’t unusual for any college program in this day and age, Blue Hens’ third-year coach Martin Ingelsby is still mindful of what’s happened in the past.

“Everybody wants to talk about recruiting,” Ingelsby said during an online Q&A with fans on Thursday night. “The most important recruits we have are the guys in our locker room.

“We’re in such a unique time and period right now (because of the pandemic). We’re keeping in touch with them, making sure they know we’re here to support them. … We have got dinged with the transfer wire the last two years. Hopefully that’s not the case moving forward for us.”

But the NCAA is currently considering a rule change that would allow all Division I athletes the chance to transfer once without having to sit out a season.

Delaware started three transfers this past season, all who sat out a season first. As the coach of a mid-major program, Ingelsby said he isn’t in favor of the rule change.

“For us at this level, I’d be naive to think that it’s not going to have a significant impact,” he said. “Obviously we’ve benefited from some transfers that have come into our program, we’ve lost some guys that have gone to different programs.

“I’m not a fan of it,” he said about the rule change. “But I do think it’s probably only a matter of time before it comes. We’re obviously going to have to adjust and react to it.”

On another note, Ingelsby said the Hens are in discussions to play road games at both an ACC and a Big 10 program next season. He said they’re also looking at taking part in an early-season tournament in Fort Myers, Fla.

Ridgely among Hornets honored

Delaware State’s Jennifer Ridgely has been named the equestrian Coach of the Year by the Eastern College Athletic Conference.

Also for the Hornets, Erin Gordon, Zoe Kirsch and Blayne Bell were selected to the All-ECAC team. Gordon earned All-ECAC honors on the Flat, while Kirsch was selected in Fences and Bell for Horsemanship.

The coaching honor is the third since 2016 for Ridgely. DelState was 10th in the last Farnam NCEA rankings before the season was suspended last month. The Hornets were second in the final ECAC standings.

Additionally, Delaware State produced 15 NCEA All-Academic honorees, including four first-team selections and 15 ECAC scholars, highlighted by four first-team members. 

“I’m honored and humbled to receive this award, but much of the credit belongs to our student-athletes and my staff,” said Ridgely, who is in her 13th season at DSU. “It’s great that our program is so well-respected by the conference.”

DSU adds women’s triathlon

Delaware State is adding women’s triathlon as its 13th women’s varsity program.

The Hornets, who will begin competing in the sport in the 2021-22 school year, will be the first Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference and second HBCU school to sponsor women’s triathlon.

The initial launch of the sport is being made possible through a grant from the USA Triathlon Foundation.

Races are sprint distance, featuring an open water 750-meter swim, draft legal 20-kilometer cycling and a 5-kilometer run. 

DSU will become the 35th school to sponsor women’s triathlon as a varsity program, with Hampton the only other HBCU to offer the sport.

Arizona State has won the last four Division I team national titles at the Women’s Collegiate Triathlon National Championships.

Women’s triathlon is the first new sport at Delaware State since the addition of women’s lacrosse and women’s golf in 2013.

Notes

• Former Cape Henlopen High baseball standout Zach Gelof led Virginia in homeruns (5), doubles (6) and runs (24) while batting .349 with 18 RBI this spring. The sophomore third baseman started all 18 games for the Cavaliers.

• Smyrna High’s Abbie Mace started all 20 games as a freshman centerfielder for the Salisbury softball team. She hit .385 with a team-high 23 runs scored and four homeruns among her nine extra-base hits.

Derick Charles, a senior forward on the Wesley College men’s basketball team, wasted to time taking the next big step in his life as he was sworn into the U.S. Army National Guard on Tuesday. Charles, who started 35 games for the Wolverines, hopes to be an FBI agent.

• Delaware State senior guard John Crosby has been selected as an HBCU All-Star and was listed as one of the top-30 players for the first HBCU All-Star Game.

The all-star contest was scheduled to be played during the NCAA Final Four in Atlanta but was canceled due to the pandemic. Crosby led the MEAC and was 34th in Division I in scoring at 19.4 points per game.

Ryan Daly, the former Delaware basketball standout who transferred to St. Joe’s, led the Atlantic 10 in scoring (20.4 ppg) and also topped the Hawks in rebounds (6.9) and assists (4.3). The junior guard was a third-team all-Atlantic 10 honoree.

• Delaware women’s golf senior Aashaka Desai was named a finalist for the Arthur Ashe Jr. Sports Scholar of the Year Award. She is one of 10 female finalists for the award, which honors minority men and women who have distinguished themselves in their academic and athletic pursuits.