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Delaware 43, Rhode Island 27

November 16, 1996

NEWARK, Del. (AP) _ Senior quarterback Leo Hamlett threw for a career-high 301 yards and three touchdowns as Delaware beat Rhode Island 43-27 on Saturday.

The Blue Hens (8-3, 6-2), ranked No. 13 in NCAA I-AA, ended the regular season by winning their 14th straight home game and downing Yankee Conference foe Rhode Island (4-6, 2-6) for the eighth straight time.

Delaware must wait until Nov. 24 to learn if it will be one of 16 teams selected for the NCAA I-AA playoffs which begin Nov. 30.

``The bottom line is that we won the game,″ said Delaware head coach Tubby Raymond, whose team allowed 434 total yards. ``We will practice this week regardless of our chances (for the NCAA Tournament).″

Rhode Island’s Chris Hixson connected on 28 of 46 passes for 363 yards and four touchdowns but threw four interceptions.

Delaware jumped out to a quick 22-0 lead as Norman Coleman scored on a 2-yard run late in the first quarter, and Hamlett threw a 4-yard scoring toss to tight end Chuck Blessing and a 46-yard pass to Eddie Conti.

Delaware went up 43-14 in the final quarter as Andre Thompson scored on an 8-yard run, Hamlett hooked up again with Blessing on a 3-yard pass and defensive end Sean Lenz returned an onside kickoff attempt by Rhode Island 52 yards for a touchdown.

Rhode Island scored twice in the final quarter as Hixson threw touchdown passes of 19 and 15 yards to Jason DeLawrence.

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