Delaney Hodgins breaks scoring record, steals family bragging rights


Hodgins’ sisters, Delaney (left) and Hayley (right), embrace after Delaney broke Hayley’s EWU career scoring record on Feb. 1. Delaney is averaging 20.8 points, 7.5 rebounds and 2.3 assists in her senior season | Bailey Monteith for The Easterner

By Jeremy Burnham, Reporter

On Feb. 20, 2016, EWU women’s basketball head coach Wendy Schuller watched as her star player, Hayley Hodgins, broke the school’s career scoring record. The game was stopped, and the team celebrated. Play then resumed, and EWU walked away with a 70-57 victory over Portland State.

Two years later, history repeated itself. On Feb. 1, 2018, Schuller again watched as Hodgins broke the scoring record. This time, it was Hayley’s younger sister, Delaney. Other than the first name of player, not much was different between the two nights. The game was stopped, the team celebrated, the game resumed and the Eagles walked away with a victory.

“It was déjà vu,” said Schuller. “It feels like we were here just a moment ago, awarding [Hayley] with the same thing. It’s special. I feel blessed to have been able to coach both of these young ladies and I’m excited for Delaney.”

Delaney Hodgins entered the game needing 15 points to break her sister’s record. By the end of the first quarter, she already had 11. A three-pointer in the second frame tied the record. Then, 12 seconds later, Hodgins stole the ball and took it in for a layup.

One of the first people down on the court to hug Delaney was Hayley. Before the game, Delaney acknowledged that the record belonging to her sister made it even more meaningful.

“It means a lot,” said Delaney Hodgins. “We’ve been together our whole lives, working for this together. She’s made me so much better as a person and a player.”

After the game, Delaney said she was happy to put the record behind her.

“It’s good to get it over with so we can focus on the games ahead,” said Delaney. “It was great to get the win. That was the focus of this game.”

“I’ve always said, if anyone’s going to break it, it would be great to keep it in the family,” Hayley told The Easterner on Dec. 3. “There’s of course no hard feelings. It’s great, and it means the program is getting better and better.”

The sisters grew up practicing against each other. They each played for Chiawana High School in Pasco, Washington. Their younger sister, Braydey, followed behind them at Chiawana. However, Braydey did not follow her sisters to EWU, opting instead to go to Boise State University. After BSU’s victory over EWU on Dec. 3, The Easterner interviewed the youngest Hodgins sister.

“I just wanted to do my own thing,” said Braydey Hodgins. “They have set the bar high here, but our game styles are different and our personality styles are completely different, so I wanted to go and do my own thing and make my own mark.”

Delaney came to EWU in 2014 during Hayley’s junior season. While Hayley led the Eagles with 538 points that year, Delaney scored 347 points, and was named the Big Sky Conference Outstanding Freshman. The Eagles made it to the second round of the NIT after defeating Washington State in the first round.

“I was lucky when [Delaney] got here, because she was very good the day she stepped on campus,” said Schuller. “I can’t take a lot of credit for what a great player she is.”

Delaney’s sophomore season was Hayley’s senior, and best season as an Eagle. She scored 680 points, the single-season EWU record. 2015-16 was also a breakout season for Delaney, who had 502 points and made the All-BSC second team.

The 2016-17 season was Delaney’s first as the team’s go-to player. With Hayley graduated, the younger sister picked up the slack with 579 points. While Delaney doesn’t have a season that has approached her sister’s 680 point mark, her consistency over four years is what led her to the record.

“When Delaney got here, we didn’t need her to be a big time scorer,” said Schuller. “Then as a junior, we needed her to step up and start scoring. It’s just being consistent that has made her a great scorer.”

If Delaney plays the eight remaining regular season games and a minimum of one postseason game, she will need to average 25.1 points per game to match Hayley’s single-season mark. That dips to 20.5 PPG if the Eagles play three postseason games.

This season marks the sixth season of the Hodgins dynasty at EWU. And with Braydey playing with Boise State, it will also be the last.

Schuller says she will remember Hodgins for her consistency and work ethic-on and off the court.

“From day one she’s been consistent,” said Schuller. “Her and [EWU men’s all-time leading scorer] Bogdan [Bliznyuk] have really taken similar paths. She has such a great work ethic, and cares so much about it. She’s a great student. People don’t understand what a great student she is […] She’s been a great player for us.”