WASHINGTON, D.C. – Despite starting off the game against George Washington with a bang, Duquesne needed late-game heroics from Michael Hughes and a few others to escape with a win.
The Dukes squandered an early 18-point lead, having to rally in the final moments of regulation to force overtime, but eventually prevailed with a 91-85 victory over the Colonials at the Charles E. Smith Center.
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Michael Hughes finished with a double-double of 21 points and 14 rebounds, both career highs, but it was his presence on the defensive end that led Duquesne down the stretch.
George Washington trailed 24-6 after just seven minutes but used the final 33 minutes of the contest to claw back. Armel Potter’s and-one play with 4:31 left tied the game at 67-all, and Maceo Jack’s three from the wing with 1:37 remaining gave the Colonials their first lead of the game, 74-71. After trading free throws, Hughes scored and Duquesne opted to foul.
Terry Nolan Jr. missed his first free throw attempt but converted the second to keep George Washington in front by two. However, with five seconds remaining in regulation, Tavian Dunn-Martin found Hughes inside, who muscled in a layup to force extra time.
Duquesne surged ahead in overtime behind a pair of back-to-back three-pointers from Frankie Hughes and Eric Williams Jr., and after the Colonials pulled within three with 39 seconds left, Hughes came through with one of his career-high seven blocks to preserve the lead. Dunn-Martin and Frankie Hughes iced the game at the line.
The victory was the Dukes’ second straight on the road this week and kept them near the top of the A-10 standings with a 4-1 mark. They’ve also won four consecutive conference games for the first time since 2010-11.
Duquesne finished with a season-high 22 assists on 32 made fields, and four other Dukes finished in double-figures in addition to Michael Hughes.
Sincere Carry totaled 19 points and eight assists, and Williams Jr. finished a rebound shy of a double-double with 15 points and nine rebounds. Marcus Weathers added 14 points, and Frankie Hughes had 10.
Duquesne shot 48 percent from the field and outrebound George Washington, 44-39. George Washington shot at a 43 percent clip and rallied behind big second-half performances from DJ Williams and Jack.
The Dukes will return home Wednesday to host A-10 leader Saint Louis, who is a perfect 5-0 in league play. Tipoff is set for 8 p.m.