DAYTON, OH— Duquesne led by as many as 14 points at a soldout UD Arena but Dayton was able to come back and secure a 68-64 Saturday afternoon win.
Eric Williams Jr led Duquesne with 20 points, his fifth time scoring 20 points or more and first since Dec. 22 against Eastern Kentucky. Freshman guard Sincere Carry added 15 points, five rebounds and six assists.
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Dayton redshirt freshman forward Obi Toppin led the Flyers with 26 points on 11-of-17 shooting.
Duquesne is now 8-3 when leading at halftime this season.
Early on, Toppin played a big factor coming off Dayton’s bench. Toppin was able to grab offensive rebounds and made four of his first five shots from the field as Duquesne could not find an answer for him on the court.
Toppin finished with 12 points in the first half despite Duquesne placing double teams in the post and attacking him on the offensive end in an effort to tire him.
Duquesne led by as many as 14 points in the first half owning a 13-2 points off turnover advantage and shot 5-for-12 from three while Dayton went 0-for-8.
In addition, Duquesne was able to intercept two Dayton inbounds passes and scored on both, including Williams burying a three-point shot extending the Dukes advantage to the aforementioned 14 points. This three silenced the UD Arena crowd.
While the offense end was shored up, Dayton was held to a 39.3% shooting clip in the first half as Michael Hughes recorded two blocks, one of which was rained down with a chorus of boos from fans looking for either a foul or the exclamation point dunk.
Duquesne on a 12-2 run and leads 27-17 at 5:14 mark. pic.twitter.com/eS2V53Iw3h
— David Jablonski (@DavidPJablonski) February 2, 2019
Dayton made its first three-point shot of the game with 13:15 remaining in the second half and from there started to string triples together, while Duquesne juggled both Michael Hughes and Amari Kelly being in foul trouble.
Aided by these threes, Dayton was able to use an 11-0 run to take a lead, midway through the second half.
As the teams traded the lead back, Williams scored eight straight Duquesne points which allowed the Dukes to match the home team.
Jalen Crutcher, who made many of threes in the second half, was briefly sent to the locker room with an injury, limping off the court but he returned. His basket put Dayton up 66-64 with less than a minute to play.
Duquesne had a fast break opportunity, but Carry’s outlet to Weathers was too far and when the latter tried to save it, the ball went to Dayton. After Crutcher split free throws, there was a battle for the basketball as the guard missed his second free throw. After video review, Dayton held possession. It was able to milk the clock to 11 seconds.
As Weathers passed to Carry, the guard rushed up the court and fired a three off the mark. Williams grabbed the rebound and the team scrambled to get behind the line to try and tie the game. Instead Weathers threw the ball to Dayton and Jordan Davis split free throws, securing the victory.
Duquesne came into this contest having lost its past five contests at UD Arena, having last won Feb. 1, 2012.
Duquesne will return back to the Palumbo Center for a 7:30 p.m. contest against St. Bonaventure. The Dukes lost both contests against St. Bonaventure last season.