Melendez, Wilson, Whittaker, Bullard, Tabakman
Johnson, Szamosi, Bresnahan, Nurkic, Robinson
How It Happened
In a final score that was not indicative of the way the game played, No. 6 Rhode Island fell 66-53 to No. 3 Duquesne in the quarterfinals of the Atlantic 10 Championship Friday night.
Rhode Island took its final lead of the night on a Tayra Melendez 3-point shot with 5:04 to go that put the Rams up, 49-48. However, Jose-Ann Johnson responded with a jumper to give the Dukes the lead right back. From there, Duquesne closed the game on an 18-4 run.
Trailing 53-49 with 2:49 to go, Rhody (17-13) had a chance to make it a one-possession game. A missed one-and-one opportunity followed by a 3-point shot by Duquesne's April Robinson made it a seven-point game with 2:15 to go. From there, the Dukes (20-9) made their free throws down the stretch to seal their spot in the semifinals.
Both teams came out firing in a first half that featured six lead changes. Rhody went up by six points on a Sydney Lewis 3-point shot with 7:08 to go in the half. However, Duquesne shut out the Rams from there, ending the half on a 10-
Duquesne will advance to play No. 2 Dayton Saturday afternoon.
Inside the Box Score
- The game featured eight lead changes and five ties. Neither team lead by more than six points until 8:54 remained in the second half.
- Senior Sydney Lewis had 13 points and five rebounds off the bench. She had 10 points and four rebounds in the first half, when she was 2-for-3 from 3-point range in the half.
- Tayra Melendez finished with 12 points, three rebounds and two steals despite being limited to eight minutes in the first half due to foul trouble.
- Junior Symone Bullard gave the Rams a third double-digit scorer. She had 11 points, four assists and three rebounds.
- Freshman Charise Wilson had six points, four rebounds and four assists in 38 minutes. Wilson has now played 1,055 minutes this season, tying Lindsay Harris (2008-09) for the second most in a single season in program history.
- Duquesne forward Jose-Ann Johnson scored all 10 of her points in the second half.
- The Dukes had a major advantage at the free throw line, making 16-of-23 attempts. Rhode Island went to the line just seven times. The first free throw for the Rams did not come until 7:43 remained in the game.
Stat of the Game
150 – Rhode Island now has 150 3-point baskets this season after making seven Friday night. It is the second most in a season in program history, behind only the 152 Rody hit in 2007-08.
Rhode Island will await the selection of the fields for the 64-team WNIT and the 16-team Women's Basketball Invitational to see whether its season will continue. The fields for both tournaments will be announced Monday, March 16.