By Bri Schmid | Staff Writer
On Sunday afternoon, the Duquesne women’s basketball team took to the court at the A.J. Palumbo Center for the first time this season for a nonconference matchup with Lehigh University. This game came just days after the Dukes suffered a tough loss to Ohio State on Friday, so it was time for a bounce back performance on Sunday.
The Dukes were able to rebound as they captured a 63-49 victory. Duquesne took an early lead in the first quarter as they pulled ahead by 12 with 1:45 left in the first quarter. The Red & Blue never surrendered that 12-point margin for the remainder of the afternoon. Although the Dukes were in control, head coach Dan Burt and the Dukes will need to work on finishing strong for the remainder of the year.
“Well that was one quarter of basketball and three quarters of absolutely horrific basketball,” Burt said. “Overall we just couldn’t put the ball in the basket. Shots wouldn’t go in for us.”
In the first quarter, the Dukes posted a whopping 30 points on the scoreboard, which more than doubled Lehigh’s 13 points. They dominated the court both defensively and offensively and held off Lehigh by crashing the boards for every single rebound.
In the first half alone, the Dukes had 36 rebounds. Amadea Szamosi posted 13 of those on her own. However, the high the team was riding in the first quarter came to a screeching halt in the second.
Play became sloppy, and it looked to be almost impossible for the Dukes to convert any offensive play into a basket. Lehigh came out more aggressively with an intense man-to-man defense and it seemed that the breathing room Duquesne had created early on was slipping away.
It only got worse from there. While the Dukes outscored Lehigh by 16 points in the first, they only managed to outscore them by five points in the second.
They held a 44-22 lead at halftime, but followed that with their worst quarter of the game. With only 4 of their 33 taken shots made, the Duquesne lead started to crumble, begging the question of whether or not the team would be able to hold out for the rest of the second half.
By the fourth quarter, head coach Dan Burt had tried every combination of players he could think of trying to get a game of “good basketball” going. The two who saw the most court time, senior Amadea Szamosi and sophomore Chassidy Omogrosso, were the team’s only consistent players throughout the entire game.
Szamosi had already achieved a double-double by halftime and finished with 15 points and a career high of 19 rebounds. Omogrosso posted a whopping 22 points and 6 rebounds.
However, as Dan Burt said, more than two consistent players are needed to play a decent game of basketball. Duquesne will struggle to be a top tier team in the A-10 Conference if they are relying on just two players.
There was a very similar notion with both Szamosi and Omogrosso as well.
“I think we are just going to have to work on flashing and getting to the ball better so that we can get better shots,” Szamosi said.
Omogrosso added that even when their shots aren’t falling, they have to stay positive and keep shooting.
Both players commented on how the team was trying to keep their energy up but when shots just don’t fall, it becomes really difficult to stay motivated. Burt noted that if it hadn’t been for the first quarter, the Dukes wouldn’t have walked away with the win at all.
“I think it just shows us how far we have to go and how much we still have to improve,” Szamosi said. “We are going to have to go hard either in practice or in the next games, especially in conference play, in order to keep our intensity up.”
Burt hopes that they can just take the win and move forward with hopefully better basketball games in the upcoming future. He said although he didn’t believe that it was from a lack of trying, it was just an ugly day of basketball.
Moving forward Duquesne will hope to play similar to how they did in the opening quarter, but will need to hold that same intensity from tipoff through the final whistle.
“A win’s a win, but we still are not happy or satisfied with how we did today,” Omogrosso said.