Duquesne (5-6) remains undefeated in their second-ever matchup against Texas-Pan American when the Dukes defeated the Broncs 78-72 Tuesday night at the A.J. Palumbo Center.
The tone was set within the first six seconds of the game when senior forward Dominique McKoy dunked the ball on a drive to the hoop. Duquesne had six double-digit scorers for the first time since November 2011, led by junior guard Micah Mason with 14 points all in the second half. Sophomore center Darius Lewis—in his first career start—and McKoy each scored a career-high 11 points and season-high 12 points respectively, with Lewis adding five blocks and McKoy contributing a season-high nine rebounds. Rounding out the double-digit scorers are freshman forward TySean Powell with 13 points, junior guard Derrick Colter with 11 points all in the first half and junior guard Jordan Stevens with 11 points.
There were five ties and six lead changes before Duquesne took the lead for good with a Stevens jumper with 5:20 left in the first half. Powell and Stevens outscored the Broncs’ bench 26-11.
The Broncs’ sophomore forward Janari Joesaar led his team and the court with a game-high 22 points.
The Dukes moved to more of an inside game against Texas-Pan American, contributing their dominance in the paint to sharing the ball. McKoy agrees that the team’s ability to play unselfishly was a factor in 6 Dukes reaching the double-digits.
“When everybody touches the ball, we get good shots and everybody’s happy,” McKoy said.
Head coach Jim Ferry credited McKoy in motivating his team in the win.
“I think one of the biggest keys was Dominique McKoy,” Ferry stated. “We’ve been really on [him] in trying to show him what he was like last year compared to what he’s been like this year. He played the way he played last year. His energy really sparked us and I thought he did a great job.”
Duquesne shot 21-of-27 from the line, as compared to Sunday’s 4-of-7 effort. Colter was fouled on a 3-pointer in the final five seconds of the first half and sunk 3-of-3 to make it a seven-point game. Free throws cinched the win for the Dukes, making 6-of-6 from the line—including Mason’s 4-for-4—with under a minute left in play.
Ferry commented on his team’s 27 free throw attempts this game in comparison to the Maryland Eastern Shore performance Sunday.
“We’ve got to play more towards the basket and I think we did a good job of that tonight,” Ferry said.
Youth and inexperience continues to be a weakness for the Dukes, noticeable in the 10-2 late surge Texas-Pan American finished with 1:49 left in play.
“The main focus has to be to keep focusing on getting better everyday,” Ferry commented. “We’re disappointed with our non-league record right now, but it is what it is, and our focus has to be on getting better, especially as we get into Atlantic 10 play. With a young group, everyday is an experience, everyday is getting these guys to understand what it’s like to play at this level.”
Duquesne will begin the Atlantic 10 portion of their schedule when they play Dayton (10-2) on Saturday, Jan. 3 at 1:00 pm ET at the UD Arena in Dayton, Ohio.
Photo by Duquesne Athletics