MCCANDLESS TOWNSHIP, Pa. — A shorthanded Duquesne women’s basketball team battled Atlantic 10 preseason favorite VCU to overtime Friday night at LaRoche’s Kerr Fitness Center but fell 68-63.
Duquesne (2-5, 1-2 Atlantic 10) was paced by freshman guard Tess Myers who scored a career-high 20 points, including six made three-point shots. Sophomore guard/forward Amaya Hamilton finished with 12 points and 10 rebounds, earning her first career double-double. Precious Johnson also added 10 points. Of Duquesne’s 63 points, 51 were scored by underclassmen.
Additionally, Duquesne recorded 17 assists on 23 made baskets, though it also committed a season high 23 turnovers. The Dukes also were 5-of-13 from the free-throw line.
In Friday night’s game, Duquesne used eight players including Ny Langley who saw her first action since being sidelined two weeks ago. Langley was held to four minutes as she got some on-court experience.
VCU (4-5, 2-0 Atlantic 10) was paced by Sarah Te-Biasu’s 16 point effort, which included seven makes from the free-throw line and Tera Reed added 16 points and eight rebounds of her own. Sydnei Archie also contributed with 14 points and nine rebounds.
The Rams outscored Duquesne 42-16 and had 27 points off 23 Dukes turnovers. This win snaps an eight-game losing streak for VCU in the overall series between the two teams.
VCU started out by scoring the game’s first six points. With Duquesne being held to one shot attempt and committing four turnovers during this early stretch, coach Dan Burt opted to call an early timeout.
Coming out of the timeout, Myers was able to get her bearings on her three-point shots as Duquesne was able to tie the game at 11 after 10 minutes of play.
Early on in the second quarter, Duquesne was able to earn a five-point advantage and appeared to get some early momentum. Defensively it was able to pry a ball free from a VCU guard but with Laia Sole cutting towards the basket, the opportunity to get a quick transition basket disappeared.
Instead, VCU was able to convert and get back into the game.
Despite foul trouble to both Myers and Precious Johnson in foul trouble, and 11 team turnovers, VCU’s halftime advantage was limited to 29-28 at halftime. All 28 of Duquesne’s points were scored by underclassmen.
Johnson opened the third quarter with a short-range basket which placed Duquesne in front, but VCU answered right back with a 7-0 run seemingly taking back control of the contest.
Instead Hamilton and Myers were able to find each other, creating multiple three-point baskets and placing Duquesne back in front.
VCU used the third-quarter media timeout to set up a frontcourt trapping defense that appeared to make Duquesne uncomfortable.
Duquesne closed the third quarter scoreless for the last 2:29 allowing VCU to hold a three-point advantage after 30 minutes.
VCU maintained a lead for much of the fourth quarter, when Kiersten Elliott buried two three-point shots tying the game at 51.
With Te-Biasu’s free throws, VCU led by three points in the closing seconds when Myers buried a three-point shot it tied the game. After the Rams missed a potential game-winning basket, the game went into overtime.
After trading baskets early on in the overtime period, both Myers and McConnell picked up their fourth fouls.
Up three with just inside of 30 seconds left, Reed was able to convert a three-point shot for VCU. From there, time was not on Duquesne’s side as despite another Elliott three-point make, the Dukes had to play the foul game.
Duquesne will next host Richmond Sunday at 2 p.m.
Photo credit: David Hague/Pittsburgh Sports Now