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Devils Pound Providence, 88-63
Game Recap
 
3 Things To Know: Virginia
Devils Pound Providence, 88-63
By Rob Clough
January 3, 2010

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Player Stats & Commentary





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Keturah Jackson

 
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KJ had a stickback and sank an open shot on a great pass from Krystal. She was perhaps a little less visible than she has been, spending most of her team concentrating on defense. She helped contain Marandola Tiffany Hurd went off for 15 points. Lola Wells, older sister of future Duke player Chloe Wells, also had her moments against Duke's backcourt. This was a typically solid performance from KJ, who helped get the ball inside to Krystal.



Joy Cheek

 
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When Joy was in the game, she was scoring effectively--nailing jump shots and sliding easily to the hoop. Other than one turnover off the dribble, she was the model of offensive efficiency. The problem was that she picked up two early fouls in the first half and then quickly picked up a third in the second half. The third foul came when the shot clock was running down and a post player had to take a jump shot--Joy came over and bumped her instead of just staying straight up. Joy is trying to get into a proper defensive stance, but has struggled to do so, often moving her feet too slowly to get into the right position on defense and sometimes fouling as a result. Duke needs her scoring potential on the floor and can't afford for her to lose so many minutes because of foul trouble. This was a serious issue last year and made Duke much easier to defend. Teams must respect Cheek's range and skill level and account for her in their defensive plans. This is because when Joy isn't making small mistakes (that nonetheless consume her), she plays with the looseness of a player who knows they can score in a variety of ways. Duke will need that player if they wish to have success in the ACC.



Karima Christmas

 
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Karima started at power forward, but she menaced Providence from every position. She was a playmaker, with passes to K. Thomas, Cheek and J.Thomas for scores. Karima only coughed up the ball once and got some tough rebounds. She showed off her range by hitting 3 of 4 threes, zoomed past the defense on another drive, scored 1-on-4 by pulling up and sinking a jumper and then twisted her way to another layup. She also sent back a shot and angled it towards a teammate for the save. This was an all-ACC caliber performance, and if she can string such performances together, that's where she might be honored.



Bridgette Mitchell

 
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Other than dribbling into the teeth of the defense and coughing up the ball on one possession, Bridgette had a fine game. She scored on a cut, a finish off a steal, and with a pretty fadeaway baseline jumper. Mitchell moved the ball around nicely, generating assists on baskets to Cheek, K. Thomas, and J.Thomas. Oddly, this fine foul shooter missed both of her attempts.



Jasmine Thomas

 
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Jasmine is doing a great job of reading game situations these days. In the first half, she quickly scored twice and then laid back a bit when her shot stopped falling, preferring instead to get the ball inside to Krystal Thomas. In the second half, she drained three after three, but said it didn't feel like she was in a zone--it felt just like a normal set of circumstances. There are few players in the league capable of unleashing so much offense so quickly, and her 14 points in about four minutes took Providence by surprise. Jasmine also hustled quite a bit, chasing down one of her misses to grab the rebound and getting a couple of ballhawking steals. She did have some bad turnovers, including once where she was picked clean and another time when a defender came up from behind her to slap away the ball (in fairness, her teammates didn't warn her about the latter instance). While her assist/turnover ratio has improved this year, she can still be a little careless with the ball.



Krystal Thomas

 
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Well, it's clear that being benched certainly got Krystal's attention. Hopefully, this lesson can carry on even when she's not getting benched. Playing against a huge frontcourt, Krystal used her sturdy frame to open up some room so as to get off jump hook after jump hook. She even got a turn-around jumpshot to land, something she's had little success with this season. Her 21 points was a career-high, and it came in just 25 minutes of play. She was equally dominant on the defensive end, pulling down rebounds with authority, swatting away four shots and altering several others. Krystal was also great at the foul line, both in terms of getting there and converting (5-5). There was a brilliantly cold efficiency to her game, a sense of knowing that she could and would dominate. She's missed a number of easy shots this season, so it was a pleasure to see her go up and finish with authority. A Krystal Thomas who plays with this degree of confidence and swagger will be hard to stop in ACC play.



Kathleen Scheer

 
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Kathleen hit a key three in the second half after a big PC run and also scored on an impressive reverse late in the game. She also had a nice block. She did continue to struggle with her shot as well as her attempts to go off the dribble. Kathleen was part of the big lineup that went into the game early in the first half in an attempt to overwhelm Providence, and she was effective as part of that unit.



Allison Vernerey

 
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Allison has been playing with less confidence of late, perhaps thanks to the way opponents have learned to scout her. After she scored with a left-handed hook late in the first half, Providence sat on her left hand the rest of the game. She was able to get to the line but only converted 3-7 shots, something that could keep her off the floor late in close games this season. She did manage to complete a three point play and hit the front half of a one-and-one and battled her way to getting 8 rebounds against a tall Providence squad. She had an impressive block against a jump-shooter without fouling her. Vernerey will be a key player in the ACC wars, as most teams simply won't have a back-up post that can match her scoring and rebounding potential.



Chelsea Hopkins

 
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While Chelsea missed both of her shots, she distinguished herself by climbing the ladder to snare 4 rebounds. She also had assists to Scheer for three and Thomas in the paint against just 1 turnover. Hopkins outplayed Selby in this game by a smidge, especially in terms of judgment with the ball.



Shay Selby

 
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Shay was yanked a couple of times after throwing several careless passes into the post. She was trying to generate some attempts for K.Thomas, but her no-look approach wasn't the appropriate choice. Shay does sometimes have the tendency to attempt the spectacular when the routine would do, and will need to balance that personal flair with team efficiency.



Alexis Rogers

 
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Lexi had some solid minutes, getting tough rebounds and finishing on a cut. She missed a couple of open shots, but only had one truly poor attempt. There was one sequence where she threw herself onto the floor in pursuit of a loose ball. She eventually forced a jump ball after a frenzied battle; it didn't wind up going in Duke's direction, but her hustle was well-noticed. That's the sort of play that lead to more minutes in the future.





Devils Pound Providence, 88-63
Game Recap
 
3 Things To Know: Virginia

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