Will There Be A Mix In La Salle's Searching Mix?

By Mel Greenberg

Less than a day after La Salle announced the school and longtime coach Tom Lochner agreed he wouldn't return following the end of his contract, some more names are being speculated as potential candidates for the Explorers.

One is Steve Mix, who has worked on 76ers broadcasts and in other roles in the NBA team's front office.

"I know he is very grounded in the women's game," said Cheryl Reeve, a former Explorers star from South Jersey who is the new coach of the WNBA's Minnesota Lynx.

Mix's daughter Courtney starred at Villanova while another daughter Stephanie played at Drexel and also has broadcasted Dragons' women's games.

He has expressed interest in several area women's jobs when they opened in recent seasons but it is not known how close he came to being a finalist for some of those positions.

In terms of female names, Lisa Cermingnano is another South Jersey product who is currently an assistant at Illinois.

She was a finalist two yesrs ago for the opening at George Washington, her alma mater.

Cermingnano helped recruit several stars for the Colonials when she served as an assistant to Joe McKeown, who is now at Northwestern.

She has also been an assistant at Southeastern Conference power Vanderbilt.

Quite possibly Loyola (Md.) coach Joe Logan could be interested in returning to his roots.

He has served as an assistant to Cindy Griffin at St. Joseph's before landing the head coaching job with the Greyhounds several years ago.

Former Penn coach Pat Knapp checked in from the middle of the Pacific on Wednesday.

No he didn't sail off on a slow boat to China.

Knapp, who recruited WNBA star Rebekkah Brunson when he was in charge at Georgetown, is an assistant at Hawaii.

"It's great out here, what can I tell you," Knapp said. "We just dodged the tusnami."

Despite the serenity that comes with being able to look at palm trees and rolling surf from his office, Knapp would be interested in returning to the area, citing family considerations.

He feels he could help someone as a top assistant.

Delle Donne Paves the Way Over Her "Pothole" Injury

Delaware freshman Elena Delle Donne, who missed two games when she sprained an ankle stepping into a pothole on campus near her apartment in Newark a week ago, returned for the Blue Hens' final regular season game Wednesday night and maintained her nation-leading scoring average by posting 27 points in the 59-41 win over Hofstra.

Delle Donne also had 10 rebounds and blocked seven shots.

The win brought the Blue Hens to a three-way tie for fourth with Drexel and Hofstra in the Colonial Athletic Association, but Delaware will be the fifth seed and open against  George Mason on Thursday in the first round at the JMU Convocation Center on the campus of James Madison in Harrisonburg, Va.

Drexel lost at William & Mary but earned a first-round bye, though the reigning CAA champions are now in a four-game slid.

However, the two local rivals could collide again in the quarterfinals if Delaware wins its opener.

Drexel took both season wins gaining a double-overtime victory in Newark and then an overtime victory at home.

Delle Donne summed up her first season back in the sport following several tumultuous events including spurning Connecticut's scholarship offer and then heading off to play volleyball when she enrolled at Delaware near her home.

"I'm enjoying the moment -- I didn't do that the first time around," Delle Donne said after the game.

She said she felt fine in terms of her ankle but is now trying to get over a chest cold.

"It always seems to be something," she said.

Delaware coach Tina Martin seemed to like the idea of running into Drexel again.

"It's going to be a great tournament," she said. "There are four or five teams who can win it. There were so many games that were decided by ownly a few points. It's going to be exciting."

Martin also made a strong campaign pitch for CAA player of the year honors for Delle Donne, which we'll hold back for now since it's getting late. The competition for the conference's top honor is expected to be a tight one among Delle Donne, Drexel senior Gabriela Marginean -- the reigning player of the year, and JMU junior Dawn Evans. 

Romano Honored

Add another local star in Division II who made a post-season squad.

Philadelphia University's Jessica Romano made the Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference first team for the third consecutive year.

  We'll be back.

  -- Mel