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2010 Blue White Recap
 
Previewing Wingate
2010 Blue White Player by Player
By Rob Clough
October 27, 2010

  PLAYERS     PHOTOS  

Player Stats and Commentary




Duke Starters

Krystal Thomas

 
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It's telling that Krystal only got 5 field goal attempts in this game, which was by far the fewest of any player. Part of that was facing a tough men's player at both ends, but more of it had to do with her teammates not looking to her enough. That said, Krystal got her hands on 5 offensive rebounds and usually looked to get rid of the ball when she did have it. That resulted in a couple of assists, but it would have been nice to see her press her advantage. Still it was no accident that the team fell apart defensively when she was out of the game. Thomas makes up for a lot of mistakes, and it's not just blocked shots--it's defensive positioning, blocking out and simply providing a physical presence to make opponents think twice before trying to score inside. She was shaken up by taking an elbow to the jaw and had a headache after the game. Hopefully, it's no more serious than a bad headache and a sore jaw.


Kathleen Scheer

 
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Leener's effort was unimpeachable. That translated nicely on the defensive end as she blocked several shots, grabbed 9 boards (second only to Thomas' 11) and went after steals. The problem, as always, was on offense. When she went 0-3 in the first quarter, that set the tone for the rest of the game. She was just 1-9 and many of her shots looked rush, with a weird hitch in her shot. Scheer sometimes loads up and then slightly moves her wrist to the right when she shoots instead of following through smoothly. The results featured shots banging against the back of the rim; like many of the other players on the floor, this indicated that she's simply trying too hard. She has to relax into shots in order to make the most of her time on the floor, because she's doing everything she needs to do in order to play.


Richa Jackson

 
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Jackson knows only one mode of play: attack. Like the other young players, she was trying just a bit too hard at times, as many of her jump shots just rimmed out. She got more confident as the game proceeded, hitting a huge shot late in the fourth quarter and taking over the third quarter on offense. Jackson also had a monster block on Gray, grabbed 8 rebounds and got to the foul line 6 times. Jackson will need to get much stronger to maximize her potential, as physical teams will be able to bump her and force her to miss. Her team and individual defense will also need to improve; Christmas took her off the dribble pretty much at will. Richa was at her best when she was going to the hoop, using her quickness to turn the corner or spring out for an open jumper. This is an unselfish team that loves to create, and I suspect Jackson will be on the receiving end of much of this generosity as the season unfolds.


Karima Christmas

 
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Karima was in mid-season form as her shooting stroke looked smooth. She scored from several spots on the floor and got to the foul line 8 times. She was by far the most physical player on the floor, overwhelming her assignment several times by forcing out the ball. Christmas was also effective as part of Duke's feared sideline traps, acting as the more aggressive defender while her partner cut off the opponent's movement. Her athletic finish off a backscreen on a pass from Jasmine was one of the game's highlights.


Jasmine Thomas

 
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Jasmine was mostly taking it easy in this game as she missed all 6 of her threes but scored on drives and a few short jumpers (including her fadeaway baseline jumper). She played point for most of the game (ceding it only to Wells in the third quarter) and led the team with 7 assists, but she also had 5 turnovers (including getting picked clean by Wells). It'll be interesting to see how quickly another point guard is placed next to her on a more permanent basis.



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Off the Duke Bench (in order of entry)

Haley Peters

 
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I've described Haley as Michele Matyasovsky 2.0, and that description certainly fit in this game. Peters is a facilitator: she moves well without the ball, sets screens and makes smart passes. She nailed several open shots that were created by her going to the right spot on the floor at the right time and finished an inbounds play by doing the same thing. She has two key weaknesses: physical strength and individual play creation. She wasn't strong enough to block out and get rebounds against the scout team, which was clearly a bit of a shock for a versatile 6-3 forward. When the ball stopped with her and she was double-teamed, she sometimes had trouble getting rid of the ball in a timely manner. Peters is a calm and mature player who fits in perfectly with the rest of the team and will make them better as she continues to improve.


Tricia Liston

 
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Liston was pretty much as advertised: a deadly, textbook shooter who is otherwise somewhat limited. She's not strong enough to bull through defenders the way she did in high school, nor is she quick enough to drive by opponents. In addition, her lack of lateral speed somes made her a target for players attempting to drive. That said, her shot is a thing of beauty to watch. She follows through nicely, always squares her feet to the basket and is aware of the three point line at all times. Even when she misses, it's not by much, and she's never fazed by a failed attempt. Like all great shooters, she's convinced that the next shot will always drop in, and hitting 4 of 7 from three is certainly indicative of that. Liston is also very clever without the ball, working some nice two-woman game action with Peters as she came around a screen on a curl to nail a shot. She has the potential to be a major weapon this year, especially if she can add a hard pump-fake and one-dribble shift to free up more room to shoot when she gets the ball.


Chloe Wells

 
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Chloe was another relentlessly aggressive freshman, which is no surprise considering that this was only her second game in public since the spring of 2009. She scored 18 points but had to hoist up 18 shots in order to do so, which was not exactly a mark of efficiency. Her range is ridiculously deep (out to about 25'), but she needs to learn the difference between a good shot and a bad one. When she pulled up from three down 1 late in the game instead of attacking the basket or finding a teammate, it showed that she was thinking "how can I win this game" rather than "how can we win this game". She will learn in time what the right thing to do in a given situation is. Wells is an excellent passer who is already accustomed to handling the ball in halfcourt and finding open players. She's an annoying pest on defense, picking Jasmine clean on one play and getting a layup. There were times when it wasn't clear who was running the show, as she and Shay seemed to have a communication breakdown on what play to call. That said, Wells showed that she's a player to take seriously and one that will work hard to get minutes.


Chelsea Gray

 
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Gray's stat line won't reflect it (just 2-12 shooting), but she was by far the most spectacular freshman on the floor. In terms of open-court passing, I've never seen a better player at Duke. Her floor vision is jaw-dropping, as she whipped off several highlight-reel assists in transition. She only hit a couple of shots and played limited minutes in order to protect her toe (she's recovering from an injury). It's clear that she's not in ideal game shape at the moment. That said, she is a weapon that few teams will have an answer for once she gets going. Gray doesn't mind getting physical, as she grabbed 7 boards and took 2 hard charges.


Shay Selby

 
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Shay was her usual hustling self as she chased down 8 rebounds and dug out a couple of steals, including a crucial one with just seconds left. Her shot wasn't on and she sometimes shot a bit too quickly (a trend certainly not isolated to her), but she provided a steady maturity to the proceedings. As a junior, she will certainly be an important piece of the puzzle.




2010 Blue White Recap
 
Previewing Wingate

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