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Delaware All-American Elena Delle Donne battling Lyme disease

Delaware All-American forward Elena Delle Donne is battling a reoccurrence of Lyme disease and won't be a full strength when the season starts, reports ESPN.com.

Delle Donne contracted the disease in 2008 and it forced her to miss 12 games during the 2011-12 season. Lyme disease is the most common tick-borne illness in North America, according to the Mayo Clinic and affects 20,000 people each year in the United States.

"You wake up and you're exhausted still; it feels like you didn't get a night's rest," Delle Donne said. "And then I have really bad muscle aches in my legs and arms, so my arms will be really heavy, it's hard to hold them up for a long period of time."

Delle Donne said she plans on playing in the season opener against Sam Houston State on Nov. 9. Delle Donne led Delaware to a 31-2 record last season and an NCAA tournament berth while leading the nation in scoring with 28.1 points per game.

"It flares up and it goes away," Delle Donne said. "It gives me confidence that I'll be able to play hopefully most of the season through it, as long as I'm medicated. I think I'll be able to push through it, even if I'm not 100 percent, or even close to 100 percent."

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