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Duquesne Basketball

2nd Half Slide Costs Duquesne in Return to Play vs George Washington



After a 25-day hiatus, Duquesne was unable to capitalize on a second quarter lead against the George Washington Colonials on Friday, falling 63-45.

Duquesne (2-8,1-5 A-10) was led by Libby Bazelak, who was playing in just her second game of the season, who scored 11. Diamond Bragg tallied 10 points, all of which came in the game’s opening quarter. The Dukes shot 34% afternoon and committed 19 turnovers. 

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The Colonials (5-12, 2-9 A-10) rode a strong second half to victory. Maddie Loder led the way with 15, and Ali Brigham was close behind with a 13 point performance. The Colonials shot 51% from the field and scored 30 points inside the paint.

It would have been difficult to predict that the Dukes would only make three shots from the floor in the second half based on how well the offense played in the opening quarter.

In fact, both teams found success on the offensive side, including six combined makes to open the game. Diamond Bragg provided the Dukes with their first five points. Her efforts on the offensive side were countered by Maddie Loder’s perfect 3-3 mark from beyond the arc.

Jasmine Whitney converted with the quarter’s biggest three, though, drilling one from deep to put George Washington ahead 23-21 at roughly the 30 second mark.

Duquesne shot 57% in the game’s opening 10 minutes, but allowed the Colonials to make 66% of their shots. 

Neither team was able to carry that momentum to the second quarter. 

After trading some baskets early on, both the Colonials and Dukes started to hit the brakes on offense. 

Libby Bazelak made a shot that put the Dukes back ahead, but the team went cold soon thereafter. On numerous possessions, Duquense squandered some key second chance opportunities that allowed an ice cold Colonials team to keep the deficit at a minimum.

A great inside look for Ali Brigham provided George Washington with their first make in almost exactly five minutes. 

Mayowa Taiwo yanked down GW’s only offensive rebound of the quarter and made the ensuing shot to give the Colonials a three point advantage, 34-31, as the first half concluded.

Duquesne would never get a taste of the lead again.

Catapulted by a great effort on the inside, the Colonials began to pull away as the third quarter rolled on. Brigham began asserting herself down low and played a significant role in the team’s 12 points from within the paint. 

The negative side effects of not playing for 25 days began appearing on the offensive side of the ball too. Duquesne turned the ball over eight times in the third quarter and made just two shots from the floor in the third quarter. 

That mark was still better than the Dukes’ 1-7 effort in the final quarter. Even with the George Washington offense cooling off in the game’s final minutes, the damage had already been done.

Duquesne has a chance to quickly erase this game from their memory, as the Dukes take on George Mason on Sunday. That game is slated for a 2 p.m. tip-off.


Sandy Schall, Coldwell Banker
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