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NCAA: Duke Broadsides Hampton, 72-37
The Nutshell
NCAA: Duke Broadsides Hampton, 72-37
Player Stats
NCAA: Duke Broadsides Hampton, 72-37
By Rob Clough
March 20, 2010


Game Recap

DWHoops Photos by Orin Day
Karima Christmas draws a foul
Karima Christmas draws a foul
Jasmine Thomas
Jasmine Thomas makes it a 21 point game
Joanne P. McCallie
Coach P before shedding jacket
Chelsea Hopkins
Chelsea Hopkins and the other reserves saw significant minutes

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It's not unusual to see Duke struggle a bit in their first round game, given the long layoff after the NCAA tournament. It's only natural to see rust set in, especially against a lesser opponent eager to make their name against Duke. That was not the case in Duke's dominant win over Hampton; indeed, both Keturah Jackson and Jasmine Thomas noted that their problem was one of perhaps a bit too much enthusiasm in the early going. They were shooting just a bit too quickly and overplaying too much on defense, allowing the fired-up Lady Pirates to grab an early 8-5 lead by the first media time-out. Every basket and great defensive play by Hampton was met by a huge roar from their boisterous band and fans. Only a couple of big-time hustle plays from Karima Christmas allowed Duke to trail by only 3 points.

Of course, Duke was playing in Cameron Indoor Stadium, and their own fans made plenty of noise themselves. Playing against a tiny team that nonetheless employed relentless pressure defense, Duke adjusted by making Hampton pay for their overplaying by attacking them off the dribble. Keturah Jackson, asserting herself more and more offense as her career winds down, used her size and strength to drive in for a score. Duke also brought in Bridgette Mitchell and Allison Vernerey for Krystal Thomas and Joy Cheek (who had been ineffective early on) to inject even more energy. Vernerey blocked a shot and then scored on a feed from Christmas to give Duke back the lead for good.

Jackson scored on another drive as the defense forced a miss and Vernerey grabbed another rebound with two players hanging off of her. KJ drove again for a score, and Mitchell was fouled following up a J.Thomas miss. Someone then hit the Turbo button on Jasmine Thomas, as she rattled off several superstar-level plays in just a few minutes. It started with a nice pass to Joy Cheek, who split a double-team with a nifty drop-step to score. After a Hampton jumper, Thomas used a split-second screen to bury a 15' jumper. Hampton hit a free throw, and Jasmine punished Hampton's lack of size by posting up for a score. That put Duke up 19-11 and triggered a game-sealing 15-0 run. Christmas got into the act with a cut on a gorgeous pass from Krystal Thomas and a stickback. After a Mitchell steal, she found KJ on the baseline for a 15' jumper. Chelsea Hopkins made a rare first-half appearance and followed her own miss.

Jasmine then ended the run she started with a spectacular strip at midcourt, modulating her speed just enough to bait Hampton into fouling Christmas as she was scoring in transition. Jasmine followed that up with a steal and layup in transition. After a Hampton foul shot that ending the run, Jasmine drove and broke off a mind-bending spin move the left Cameron gasping. That put Duke up 32-11 and left Hampton looking dazed. Hampton finally managed a field goal (after a nine-minute drought), but Jasmine responded by draining a three. Duke closed out its scoring for the half as Kathleen Scheer came off the bench to hit a three, making the halftime score 40-14. Duke shot a solid 46% from the floor and held Hampton to just 23%. The Devils were +12 on the boards and had an 11-2 edge in points off turnovers and a 10-1 advantage in second-chance points. Meanwhile, three Hampton starters picked up 2 fouls apiece.

Duke tried a variety of defenses in the second half as the blowout continued. To start the half, Hampton displayed its pride by outscoring Duke 9-7 during the first four minutes. The Lady Pirates even sank their first three of the game during this period. KJ responded to that three with a trey of her own on a pass from Jasmine. Duke closed out Hampton after they pulled within 47-23 with an 8-0 run. That run started with an improbable 19' pull-up jumper from Mitchell and also included a jumper and fast break finish from Jackson. The coup de grace came in the form of a spectacular lob pass from Jasmine to Karima on an out of bounds play. Coach McCallie noted that this sideline play was one they practiced every day, but not one they used all that often in games. She noted that usually the point guard, inbounding the ball from the sideline, usually doesn't throw the ball high enough for Karima to grab it and finish in the air.

That play ignited an 8-0 run that had Duke flirting with a 40 point lead. When Duke went up 63-25, coach McCallie put in all of the reserves, with Alexis Rogers, Kathleen Scheer, Chelsea Hopkins and Shea Selby all getting extended minutes. That group kept it about even with Hampton's starters down the stretch, with Duke's only field goal being a three from Scheer. No Duke player was on the floor for more than 26 minutes, and everyone got at least 8 minutes of playing time. On a warm day in Durham, the biggest challenge coach McCallie faced was having to take her jacket off during the game. She noted that this game helped Duke because the Devils had to deal with so much quickness and aggressiveness in Hampton, and it made them have to be alert and focused. Hampton didn't give Duke a chance to get complacent: the Devils had to be ready to respond, and they did both in terms of effort and execution, as their dominance both in terms of hustle stats and their low number of turnovers will attest.

Duke Bench
Bridgette Mitchell leads the eruption of Duke's bench (note: Coach P jacket long gone)

NCAA: Duke Broadsides Hampton, 72-37
The Nutshell
NCAA: Duke Broadsides Hampton, 72-37
Player Stats

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