Delaware Blue Coats set franchise record for highest game point total

Michael Foster Jr. dunks the ball. Foster Jr. dropped 14 points on the historic night for the Blue Coats. Saturday, Feb. 11, 2023. - Staff Photographer / Tyrese Williams

The Delaware Blue Coats defeated the Wisconsin Herd 166-139 at Chase Fieldhouse on Saturday, Feb. 11, and their 166 points set the record for highest point total in a game in franchise history.

“That’s pretty cool, for real,” Michael Foster Jr. said. “But we got the win, so that’s more than the record. But we played team ball, and that gives you perspective on our potential to be great.”

Mac McClung attributed the dominant win to strong team connection and scoring on both sides of the ball.

“We were really flowing, everybody was playing well on offense. Our defense, I think they scored quite amount of points too,” McClung said. “It was a lot of fun.”

The Blue Coats returned home on Saturday evening following a five game road trip in which they won four out of five games. However, they were ready to prove themselves on their home court.

“It was good to be back, we had a long road trip,” McClung said. “There’s a stat that you win 30% of your games after you come home from a long road trip, so we were just really focused on trying to get this win, and we did, so I’m super happy about that.”

Riding the momentum from their success on the road, both Foster Jr. and McClung had solid performances. Foster Jr. scored 14 points and grabbed six rebounds, while McClung racked up 35 points on 7-8 shooting from a distance. Both knew they had to bring some extra juice to win on Saturday evening based on the statistic mentioned by McClung, which was presented to the team by Head Coach Coby Karl.

“Coach [Karl] gave us a little rundown, it said 70% of teams lose their first home game after coming back from a road trip,” Foster Jr. said. “We had that chip on our shoulder all night. Props to Coach right there.”

As has been the case all season, McClung’s performance was special on Saturday. The six-foot-two-inches guard out of Texas Tech displayed his athleticism, ball-handling skills, vision and shooting chops against a team he dropped a career-high 40 points against back on Jan. 16.

Even with his continuing success against Wisconsin this season, McClung isn’t quite ready to pin them as a favorable matchup.

“I’m just in flow,” McClung said. “I try to be in flow each game, I don’t really focus on who I’m playing. My teammates were looking for me and getting me the rock, so I just tried to make the most of it.”

Foster Jr. got inserted back into the starting lineup Saturday following a nearly month-long absence from the unit. The team’s leading rebounder claims his return to the starting lineup had no affect on his confidence or play style against the Herd.

“Starter, off the bench, I just come in, try to be that energy guy and protect the rim,” Foster Jr. said.

A big factor of the Coats’ offensive success on Saturday was due to their efficiency shooting the three-ball. As a team, Delaware shot 52.6% from long range.

Even though the Coats’ shooting from long range propelled them in this one, McClung believes the team’s offense isn’t ride or die with the three-point shot.

“I don’t think we rely too much [on the three ball],” McClung said. “We have a lot of shooters that we expect to make shots, but we have guys that can shoot the three and get to the rim, and pass, and make each other better. I think we rely on our defense first, then everything else just flows.”

Although the Blue Coats soared offensively, the defense was somewhat troubling, allowing 139 points which was their second highest of the season. But Foster Jr. does not believe that it is cause for concern.

“It was a high-scoring game,” Foster Jr. said. “Props to Wisconsin, they can score their ass off. We just gotta focus and lock in and take pride in our defensive matchups.” 

Delaware has now won five straight games and six of their last seven. The team is starting to reach new heights, but McClung believes their best days are still ahead of them.

“We’re becoming who we’re supposed to be,” McClung said. “We still have a lot of growth, but I’m telling you, we believe we’re the best team in the G-League. We’re just gonna keep climbing, trying to get there.”

For comments/questions about this story tweet @TheWhitSports.