Rich Donahue | The Duquesne Duke
After demolishing George Mason 88-54 on Thursday night at the Palumbo Center, the Duquesne women’s basketball team suffered a road loss in conference play Sunday afternoon at the hands of the Dayton Flyers. The 78-67 loss drops the Dukes to 9-7 on the season and 1-2 in Atlantic 10 action. Dayton improves to 11-4 on the year and 2-1 in the A-10.
Junior guard April Robinson led all Dukes in scoring with 15 points on Sunday. Junior guard Deva’Nyar Workman recorded her third double-double of the year, posting 11 points and 10 boards.
For most of the first half it looked as if the game would be a back and forth affair. The Dukes grabbed slim leads on two separate occasions in the first half only to have those quickly erased. An Amadea Szamosi jumper tied the game for the 10th time at 33 all with 4:18 left in the first half. However, the Flyers would begin to pull away as they ended the half on a 9-2, giving them a seven-point cushion at halftime.
After going down by as many as 11 to start the second half, the Dukes’ defense began to step up. Duquesne would hold the Flyers to 14 percent shooting from the field over a seven and a half minute stretch. This 17-8 run would be capped by a Workman jumper that brought the Dukes within two points with 6:18 left in the game. Though the Dukes would keep pace with the Flyers as time ticked away, it would not be enough. Free throws in the final minutes put the Dukes on ice and gave the Flyers the decisive win.
Even with the tough defensive play by the Dukes in the second half, a poor shooting effort doomed them. Duquesne shot a miserable 28.9 percent from the field in the second half after hitting 40 percent in the first. The Dukes were dreadful from behind the arc as well. The team combined to shoot 20 percent from the 3 point line including 0-6 in the second half. Coming into Sunday’s action, the Dukes were averaging 37.2 percent from three.
Duquesne was riding high coming into the Dayton game after defeating George Mason Patriots last Thursday 88-54. Robinson again led the Dukes in scoring with 21 against GMU, while Workman had 18.
The Dukes dominated the interior game versus the Patriots, outscoring them 44-24 in the paint. Turnovers were another key in the Dukes’ dominant performance. The Patriots turned the ball over 24 times in the game which led to 26 points for the Dukes.
Though it has been up-and-down season for the Dukes, they will catch a break in their upcoming A-10 schedule. Three of the next four games are against teams who are behind them in the A-10 standings. Duquesne will face Saint Louis (8-8, 1-2 A-10) tonight at 7 p.m. at the Palumbo Center.
After that, they’ll face off against Saint Joseph’s (5-10, 1-2 A-10) at home on Sunday afternoon at 2 p.m before heading to the nation’s capital to play George Washington on Jan. 21. On Jan. 24, they will welcome conference newcomer Davidson (4-12, 0-3) to the Palumbo Center.
Robinson has led the Dukes in scoring through 16 games, averaging just under 16 points per game. In her first season on the Bluff,Workman has been productive for the Red & Blue as well. She’s averaged 12 points per game and grabs a team-high six rebounds per game.
With a 1-2 record in the Atlantic 10, the Dukes will hope to improve their record in the coming weeks as conference play picks up for the spring semester.