Harris scores 33 in WVU win over Duquesne
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MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — Which Mountaineer was most responsible for Sunday afternoon's outcome?
Duquesne had at least a couple clear-cut choices.
West Virginia sophomore Eron Harris was outstanding from the 3-point line, but Juwan Staten's quickness also troubled Duquesne in the Dukes' 96-83 nonconference loss at WVU Coliseum.
Harris, who made 6 of 8 3-point shots, had 33 points. Staten, who made 14 of 19 free throws, scored 28.
“I know Harris scored all of those points, but we just couldn't keep (Staten) in front of us,” Duquesne coach Jim Ferry said of the 6-foot-1 junior guard who made 7 of 11 shots, had nine assists, three steals and just one turnover. “We tried zone, we tried trapping him, we tried stepping off and playing in the paint to make him make other decisions.
“I thought he just dominated.”
It was WVU's ninth win in the past 10 games against Duquesne (1-2), which won 60-56 last season at Consol Energy Center. WVU (2-1) is 67-3 against nonconference visitors the past 11 seasons.
Yet, Sunday's outcome wasn't certain until well into the second half.
With 14:54 left, a 3-pointer by Duquesne's Micah Mason forced a 59-59 tie. And with 7:30 left, the WVU lead was only four points.
WVU distanced itself from the Dukes in the final six minutes, a game-winning push sparked by consecutive 3-pointers from Harris and Terry Henderson just 19 seconds apart. A 14-1 run gave West Virginia a 89-72 lead with 2:51 left.
“We went from being up by four to being up by 10,” WVU coach Bob Huggins said. “When you look at the scoreboard, you feel a lot more comfortable.”
This was the second time 3-point shooters proved difficult for Duquesne. WVU made 10 of 18. New Hampshire made 15 of 27.
“We gave them a couple really good looks early in the second half,” Duquesne senior Ovie Soko said, “and they got it going.”
Soko had 19 points and 12 rebounds for Duquesne, which held a 39-30 rebounding edge. Mason had 18 points.
“We knew it came down to getting stops on the other end of the court,” Mason said. “Staten and Harris just weren't missing much.”
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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