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Previewing Duke at James Madison
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Duke Knocks Off JMU, 75-58
Player Stats

Duke Knocks Off JMU, 75-58
By Rob Clough
November 30, 2010



Duke picked up a solid road win over James Madison on the road, in front of a packed house. The three seniors all scored between 11 and 14 points, but the team was led by Chelsea Gray with 15 points and 6 rebounds (it doesn't hurt to be a 5-11 point guard). The fact that Duke won by 17 points despite excruciating 5-17 shooting from Jasmine Thomas shows how nicely this team is developing in terms of scoring balance. Throw in a combined 14 point/7 rebound/6 assist game from the power forward tandem of Kathleen Scheer and Haley Peters and a solid effort from the other 2/3 of Duke's point guard triumvirate, and you have a Duke team that is humming along nicely.

Duke did a good job of limiting turnovers (13), but teaching points for this game will include blocking out (JMU sent 4 players to the boards and that got them 12 second-chance points), pressuring the ball for turnovers (JMU had only 14) and running to take advantage of turnovers. That said, even though JMU was able to slow Duke's fast break down, they didn't do much against them in the halfcourt. Duke shot 47% for the game, had 20 assists to 13 turnovers and took care of business at the foul line. Krystal Thomas is suddenly playing at a much higher level, though she can get even better if she continues to stay aggressive.

In the first half, JMU surprised Duke a bit with their post scoring, thanks to the slippery Lauren Jiminez. The fifth-year senior scored on a cut and a short jumper to help stake the Dukes to a 10-6 lead. Things were nip and tuck for a while as Duke struck with a three by Haley Peters and a three point play by Chelsea Gray. Krystal Thomas was strong in the first half, looking to score the ball and get boards. Jiminez picking up three first-half fouls hurt the Dukes badly, as they missed her inside-outside presence. Krystal got two of JMU's other post players in foul trouble as well, which put pressure on the Dukes to hit jump shots. Duke went on a 10-0 run midway through the first half to stake themselves to a lead that would rarely dip below 9 points the rest of the way.

The veterans dominated that run, as Kathleen Scheer had 4 points, Krystal Thomas 2, Karima Christmas 2 and Jasmine Thomas 2 points and 2 assists. JMU struggled to keep up as Jasmine and Chelsea Gray bombed away from three, though Dawn Evans scored 5 points and had an assist to keep JMU within striking distance. A 7-0 Duke run fueled by Gray, Haley Peters and Shay Selby made it 37-21, but Evans later scored 7 straight points to cut the lead to 41-32. Christmas scored a couple of times near the end of the first half to push Duke's lead to 43-32.

Duke scored just 2 points in the first three and a half minutes of the second half, but Krystal Thomas fearlessly patrolled the lane and helped to hold JMU to just 4 points during that span. Duke quickly pushed the lead back up to 14 thanks to offensive rebounding and Karima Christmas. Duke would keep the lead between 12 and 14 for most of the rest of the game. Evans would prove not to be much of a factor in the second half, going scoreless during the last seven minutes of the game until a meaningless three in the final minute. She scored 20 points on 22 shots--5 points under her average. After a hot first half, Duke's guard depth wore her down a little as the shots stopped falling. Duke never did solve Jimenez when she was on the floor, as she had 19 points and 11 rebounds. Duke concludes their four game road trip on Thursday with their ACC-Big Ten Challenge game at Wisconsin. A preview of this matchup will be published later today.

Duke Blue Devils Team Box Score


James Madison Team Box Score


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Previewing Duke at James Madison
Duke Knocks Off JMU, 75-58
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