Duquesne’s two-game exhibition season came to a close Sunday night at the Palumbo Center with a 92-46 blowout win over Division II opponent Hawaii-Hilo. Perimeter shooting was the story all night long for the home team. Seven different players for the Dukes made three-point field goals, while the team as a whole went 48.4 percent on the night.
True freshman Derrick Colter provided the initial spark, hitting two from behind the arc in the first minute and a half of the ballgame. Sean Johnson would go on to hit four, while Marvin Binney and freshman Quevyn Winters each had three apiece.
“Let’s not fool ourselves,” Coach Jim Ferry said, “when you make fifteen threes, I think that cures a lot of ills and hides a lot of weaknesses.”
Although Ferry’s team clearly improved their performance from Thursday night’s game, there were still a number of weaknesses. After the game, senior leader Sean Johnson spoke of improvements in his team’s aggressiveness on defense, but also stated that the Dukes didn’t rebound as well in this game as they did against CMU.
“That’s just something we have to keep working on,” Johnson said.
Duquesne allowed the Hawaii-Hilo Vulcans to grab six offensive rebounds in the first half, to their four.
Turnovers were again an issue for Duquesne. They finished the game with 17, after committing 11 in the first half for the second straight game. Nevertheless, Ferry was pleased with the ball movement, which allowed the Dukes many open looks from the perimeter.
Colter, Johnson, Kadeem Pantophlet, Andre Marhold and Jerry Jones were the starters for Duquesne, with Colter running the offense. The group got the Dukes out to a commanding 22-6 lead in the first 8:12 of the game. Forward Michael Meronas kept the Vulcans remotely close early on, recording 11 of his 14 points in the first half. However, any hope the visiting team had of keeping the game close vanished when they went on to shoot a woeful 16.7 percent from the floor in the second half. Duquesne opened the final half of play with the same intensity they had in the opening stages of the first, jumping out to a 60-32 lead with 14:56 remaining.
All in all, Ferry seemed optimistic about his team’s performance Sunday night.
“If we could shoot the ball that well throughout the season, you know, we’ll have a shot,” Ferry said after the game.
Duquesne, who was picked to finish last in the Atlantic 10 conference this year, must now turn their attention to the regular season opener this Friday at Albany.
Photo Credits: Duquesne