Richmond deals Duquesne 4th straight defeat
By Chris Harlan
Published: Wednesday, Feb. 12, 2014, 9:06 p.m.
Duquesne's Ovie Soko had 21 points but the team's losing streak reached four games Wednesday night with a 75-58 loss to Atlantic 10 visitor Richmond at Palumbo Center.
The Dukes (10-13, 2-8), with just six conference games left, have now lost eight of their past nine in the A-10.
“Everyone's disappointed,” Soko said. “We don't feel like we've played to the best of our ability. And our record doesn't reflect the kind of team we have, I don't believe.”
But losing to Richmond isn't new. The Dukes are 1-16 against the Spiders since they joined the conference in 2001. Duquesne fell behind 17-3 and never led. It was the team's third-lowest point total this season, well below its 74.9 average. The Dukes shot just 38 percent, but allowed Richmond to shoot 45.
“We got completely out-played on both sides of the basketball,” Duquesne coach Jim Ferry said. “I thought they shredded our defense in man-to-man and zone. And they did a great job defending us.”
Kendall Anthony scored 20 points for Richmond (16-8, 6-3), which had four scorers in double figures. All seven players had at least two baskets.
With a Princeton-style offense that can control the ball and spread the scoring, all seven Spiders had at least two baskets.
“When they have a six-point lead, it feels like 26 because they're so patient,” Ferry said, “and they can beat you for a layup.”
The Spiders were playing their third game without leading scorer Cedrick Lindsay. The senior guard, whose 18.3-point average ranked third among A-10 scores, was lost for the season with torn meniscus in both knees. But without him, Anthony's role has grown. The 5-foot-8 junior had 28 points in a victory over St. Bonaventure and 31 in a loss to VCU.
Anthony made 5 of 14 shots against Duquesne, but also 6 of 6 from the foul line. Two free throws by Anthony gave Richmond its largest lead, 61-38 with 8:28 left.
“He's a quick, little guy,” sophomore Micah Mason said. “He's a great player who's so aggressive. It's hard to stay in front of him.”
Mason, the nation's leader in 3-point shooting at 59.7 percent, was 3 of 7 from the arc and scored 15 points.
Quick 3-pointers by Kendall Anthony and Wayne Sparrow built a 6-0 lead for Richmond, which made seven 3s on 15 first-half attempts.
Opponents have shot 43.1 percent from the arc against Duquesne's defense, which ranks last in the A-10 against the 3-pointer. The Spiders needed just four minutes to build a double-digit lead. Richmond led 17-3 with 15:14 until halftime, when ShawnDre' Jones found a rebound and scored in the lane.
Duquesne made one field goal in the first six minutes and had more turnovers (four) than points (three). A basket by Dominique McKoy and a free throw by Soko were the only points until McKoy scored again with 13:22 left. The Dukes made just two of their first seven shots, including 0 for 3 from the arc.
Trailing by 14, Duquesne found a 9-2 run with a 3-pointer by Desmond Ridenour and an alley-oop from Ridenour to Soko. With 9:52 until halftime, the lead was 21-14.
But Richmond maintained the lead. With 4:55 left, The Spiders' first-half lead peaked at 35-21 after a running 3-pointer by Anthony. The Spiders led at halftime 39-27.
Two free throws by McKoy early in the second half had the Dukes back within single digits, 43-34, with 17:20 left. But they moved no closer.
“Everybody's a little frustrated,” Ferry said. “They kids are losing a little confidence right now, and we can't allow that to happen.”
Chris Harlan is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at email@example.com or via Twitter @CHarlan_Trib.
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