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Duquesne Basketball

Precious Johnson’s 20 Points Power Duquesne Past Rhode Island

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PITTSBURGH — The Duquesne women’s basketball team won its first-ever game Thursday night at the UPMC Cooper Fieldhouse by a 71-63 score over Rhode Island.

Precious Johnson scored a career-high 20 points for Duquesne (4-8, 3-5 Atlantic 10), leading all scorers. Johnson was 8-for-10 from the field and also added nine rebounds.

Diamond Bragg added 12 points towards Duquesne’s cause, her fourth double-figure effort in the last five games. Ny Langley also amassed a double-digit point total for her second consecutive contest, with her 10 points.

Duquesne’s bench outscored Rhode Island 56-25 and as a team assisted on 16-of-23 field goals.

Rhode Island (8-7, 8-4) was paced by both Catherine Cairns and Emmanuelle Tahane, both of whom totaled 17 points. Cairns converted five three-point shots to get her points, in 27 minutes off the bench. Tahane added 12 rebounds. Johanna Muzet also added 11 rebounds towards Rhody’s total.

In honor of both of their respective senior days, Caroline and Kiersten Elliott each earned starting nods. While Duquesne does have other seniors, the sisters will be departing the program, though a university spokesperson stated that during next season’s senior day, when there is an on-court ceremony, both will be invited to participate.

Caroline Elliott started off the scoring for Duquesne in Thursday’s contest as she made her first career field goal, a layup, weaving her way through the Rhode Island defense.

Just 58 seconds into the contest, Libby Bazelak appeared to be in some pain and was subbed out. She missed the remainder of the first quarter and after a brief warmup, returned to action with 7:12 remaining in the second quarter.

Duquesne did not commit a foul in the opening quarter, but trailed 17-15 after 10 minutes of play. Rhode Island shot 46.7% from the field aided by Catherine Cairns’s two three-point shots giving Rhody a bench spark.

It was Duquesne’s bench which told the story in the second quarter as those players scored 21 of 22 Dukes points in the stanza. Compared to Duquesne’s bench, Rhode Island was held to five points during the same time period.

Johnson scored eight points in the quarter for Duquesne including a basket which beat the buzzer and provided the Dukes with a 35-33 halftime advantage.

Duquesne built momentum in the third quarter and after Johnson hesitated for a layup, the lead was built to 10 points which activated a Rhode Island timeout.

Coming out of the timeout, Rhode Island went on an 8-0 run forcing Duquesne to create a stoppage of its own. Duquesne was able to regroup after its timeout and lead Rhode Island 54-47 after three quarters.

Duquesne found itself in another close contest but always led by four points or more for the duration of the quarter securing a win.

Sandy Schall, Coldwell Banker
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