Duquesne women beat RMU in heated game
The Duquesne women beat Robert Morris for the fourth year in a row and sixth time in the last seven meetings, 79-63, on Wednesday at Palumbo Center.
The Dukes' second-leading scorer, Wumi Agunbiade, was ejected in the first half but her teammates responded with double-point nights from senior guard Raegan Moore with 20 and sophomore point guard April Robinson with 14. Orsi Szecsi and Stasia King each contributed 11 points for the Dukes.
“I said in the postgame with our kids in the locker room that in my seven years as an assistant and head coach with Duquesne this might be the greatest team victory that we've had in terms of getting significant contributions at critical times from such a variety of players,” first-year head coach Dan Burt said. “It's obvious it was a dogfight out there.”
Robert Morris' foul trouble caught up to them in the second half with four out of their five starters sitting at four apiece with 12 minutes to play. Lou Mataly fouled out a minute later, leaving the team with twice as many fouls as Duquesne. Cassie Oursler fouled out next, followed by Jolie Oligende. Ashley Ravelli and Artemis Spanou finished the game with four each.
Twenty-three of the Dukes' points were scored at the free-throw line (23 of 33).
“Fouls hurt us, no questions,” RMU coach Sal Buscaglia said. “Against any team, whether it's Duquesne or any team, it really fuses you in your rotations.”
Freshman Anna Niki Stamolamprou led the Colonials with 19 points. Spanou's streak of consecutive double-doubles hit 33, with 13 points and 14 rebounds. The senior also became the school's all-time leading scorer with her total at 1,641. It was her 100th career game.
Duquesne led, 40-33, at halftime.
Duquesne (8-3) was coming off back-to-back wins but hadn't played in 10 days. Robert Morris (3-6) has now lost five in a row after opening the season 3-1.
The incident between Agunbiade and Ravelli occurred with seven minutes left in the first half. Ravelli dropped to the ground clutching her side then popped up shouting and took a step toward the Duquesne bench before teammates surrounded her. Officials looked at the replay and saw Agunbiade hit Ravelli with a closed first. Both were assessed a technical foul and Agunbiade was ejected. The Colonials were leading, 23-21, at the time.
Burt said he hadn't seen a replay and that Agunbiade said it didn't happen that way, but Buscaglia said the official told them both it was a blatant punch.
“Ashley's never gotten a technical the entire time I've coached her,” Buscaglia said. “She's never done anything. … I'm sure Dan will handle it. He's a professional and a good man, good coach, good program. He'll handle it properly. I have confidence in that.”