PREVIEW: @DuqMBB at #24 (AP)/#23 (USA Today) Rhode Island
Jan. 25, 2018

  GAMEDAY
 Game 22 Duquesne (14-7, 5-3) at #24 (AP)/#23 (USA Today) Rhode Island (16-3, 8-0)
 Date | Time Saturday, Jan. 27, 2018 | 12:00 p.m. ET
 Location Ryan Center (7,657) | Kingston, R.I.
 Game Notes Duquesne Game Notes
 Watch NBCSN
 Listen WJAS 1320 AM / iHeartRadio
 Live Statistics Live Stats
 Social Media @ DuqMBB  width= 

• Duquesne (14-7, 5-3), hits the road to face Atlantic 10 leader Rhode Island (16-3, 8-0) on Saturday, Jan. 27 at Noon (NBCSN). The Rams, winner of 11 in a row, earned a spot in both polls this week at No. 24 (AP) and No. 23 (USA Today). This will be Rhody's first home game as a ranked team this season. URI, which is DU's first ranked opponent since at No. 2 (AP) Kentucky on Nov. 20, 2016, has won 13 in a row at Ryan Center. Duquesne has already eclipsed last season's win total (10-22) and conference victory mark (3-15) in their first-year under head coach Keith Dambrot. The Dukes (.282) and Rams (.303) enter Saturday's game as the two top 3-point defensive teams in the A-10. URI (66.3 ppg.) and DU (66.6 ppg.) also rank second and third in the conference in scoring defense. This is just the fourth true road game for the Dukes, who were the last D-1 team to play a road game this season (Jan. 6 at Fordham).

TRENDING
• Duquesne ranks 4th nationally in 3-point field goal percentage defense (.282). The .282 mark is the best in school history. DU ranked 232nd in 3-point defense last season.

The Last Meeting
Rhode Island90
Duquesne69
January 21, 2017
A.J. Palumbo Center
Rhode Island Defeats @DuqMBB
Hassan Martin scored 20 points and E.C. Matthews added 19 to lead Rhode Island to a 90-69 win over Duquesne at Palumbo Center.

• DU has outrebounded 15 of 21 opponents (tied once). The Dukes were outboarded 19 times in 2017. Duquesne is coming off a season-high 50 rebound effort (24 offensive) on Wednesday vs. Richmond.

• Duquesne is 11-1 when holding opponents under 70 points and 14-0 when leading with 5:00 left.

Eric Williams Jr., a four-time A-10 Rookie of the Week, is 14-of-24 (.583) from the 3-point arc in his past two games. He is averaging 29.5 ppg. and 9.5 rpg. in his last two outings. The 6-5 Williams Jr. had a streak of three-straight double-doubles snapped vs. Richmond (25-8).

• Six-five Williams Jr., the A-10's leading rebounder (9.7), ranks fifth among D-I freshmen in rebounds/g. The four ahead of him, Deandre Ayton of Arizona, Marvin Bagley of Duke, Mo Bamba of Texas and Brandon McCoy of UNLV, were all ESPN.com 5-star recruits - and are all 6-11 or taller.

• Williams Jr. leads the A-10 in rebounding at 9.7 rpg. His nine double-doubles rank second in the conference and tied for fifth nationally among Division I freshmen. He has posted double-doubles in four of eight conference games.

Tydus Verhoeven, the A-10's leading shot blocker (50, 2.38/g.), rejected a DU freshman record nine shots vs. George Mason on Jan. 20. He is four blocks shy of tying the DU freshman record of 54 set by Derrick Alston in 1991.

• DU is 12-5 since grad transfer Chas Brown made his debut on Dec. 1 with five minutes played vs. Pitt. Brown, Coppin State's MVP last season, missed the first four games with a foot injury. DU is 10-2 when Brown logs 15 or more minutes.

Tarin Smith, who entered this season with 21 3-pointers (63 g.), has 25 3-pointers in 21 games this year.

• Graduate student guard Rene Castro-Caneddy, who entered this season with a 5.0 ppg. scoring average, is scoring at a 13.0 ppg. clip. He has scored in double digits in six of his past eight games.

Jordan Robinson is averaging 6.3 ppg. and 5.0 on .600 shooting (21-of-35) in 20.4 min/g. in conference play.

• Duquesne's three overtime games in a season are the most since the Dukes played a school record six in 2009-10.

THE SERIES
Series Record: Rhode Island leads 32-25
At Pittsburgh: Rhode Island leads 14-12
At Kingston: Rhode Island leads 18-11
Neutral Site: Duquesne leads 2-0
A-10 Regular Season: Rhode Island leads 29-21
A-10 Championship: Duquesne leads 2-1
Dambrot vs. Rhode Island: 0-2
Dambrot vs. Rhode Island at Duquesne: 0-0

• This is the 58th meeting in a series that dates to Jan. 13, 1966. Rhode Island, winner of 19 of the past 25, leads the all-time series 32-25. In games at Kingston, Rhody holds an 18-11 lead. DU has won two of the past six, with both wins coming at Ryan Center.

• In an oddity of sorts, URI has won the past eight meetings at Palumbo Center, while DU has won four of the past nine meetings at Ryan Center.

• Nine of the past 11 meetings between the two (eight URI wins) have been determined by eight or fewer points. The average score of the past 11: Duquesne 72.4, Rhode Island 74.2 (796 points for DU to 816 points for URI).

• URI is in its sixth season under head coach Dan Hurley. This is the first meeting between Hurley and Duquesne's Keith Dambrot. Dambrot is 0-2 vs. the Rams with both meetings coming while Dambrot was at Akron. Jim Baron's Rams defeated the Zips at home, 79-50, on Jan. 3, 2009 and also won the next season in Akron, 68-63 on Jan. 5, 2010.

• Rhode Island, the preseason A-10 favorite, is coming off a 78-58 win at Fordham on Wednesday ... the Rams, who entered both the AP (#24) and USA Today (#23) polls this week, have won 11 in a row and are 11-0 at home ... URI's 13-game home win streak is the 12th-longest in the country ... Duquesne is 0-2 all-time vs. AP ranked Rhody teams: #23 URI 83, Duquesne 76 on Jan. 10, 1998 & #22 URI 80, Duquesne 78 on Jan. 13, 2008 (both games were at Rhode Island).

NOTING THE DUKES
• This is the 102nd season of basketball for Duquesne University. The Dukes started play in 1913-14 (DU did not field a team in 1944-45-46 due to World War II).

• DU is in its first season under head coach Keith Dambrot. Dambrot came to the Bluff after 13 highly-successful seasons at Akron, where he led the Zips to a 305-139 record (23.5 wins per season) including 10 postseason appearances (3 NCAA, 5 NIT, 1 CBI & 1 CIT). Dambrot's 14-7 start is the best by a DU first-year coach since Dudey Moore went 17-4 in his first 21 games in 1948-49. Moore coached Keith's father, Sid, from 1952-54 during his highly-successful 10 seasons on the Bluff. There were 10 coaches between Moore and Dambrot.

MOST WINS BY A FIRST-YEAR DU COACH
since World War II

Dudey Moore (1948-49) -- 17-5
Keith Dambrot (2017-18) -- 14-7
John Cinicola (1974-75 ) -- 14-11
Red Manning (1958-59) -- 13-11
Mike Rice (1978-79) -- 13-13

NCAA FIRST-YEAR COACHES AT NEW SCHOOL
through Jan. 24

Coach, School -- W/L -- Last Year
Chris Jans, N. Mexico St. -- 17-3 (.850) -- 28-6
Chris Holtmann, Ohio St. -- 18-4 (.818) -- 17-15
Joe Pasternack, UCSB -- 14-5 (.737) -- 6-22
Keith Dambrot, DUQ -- 14-7 (.667) -- 10-22
LaVall Jordan, Butler -- 14-7 (.667) -- 25-9
Kevin Keatts, NC State -- 14-7 (.667) -- 15-17
Cuonzo Martin, Missouri -- 13-7 (.650) -- 8-24

• Duquesne eclipsed last year's win total (10-22) in its 15th game - a 69-22 win over GW. The Dukes, who were 3-15 in conference play last year, opened A-10 play 4-1.

• This is the third time in 41 A-10 seasons that the Dukes opened conference play 3-0 or better. Duquesne finished no worse than tied for fifth on the other two occasions: a school-record 8-0 start resulted in a tie for 4th at 10-6 in 2011 and a 3-0 start in 2009 produced a t5th finish at 9-7. Duquesne's 5-3 conference start is the best since the 2011 team opened with the eight consecutive wins.

• Duquesne had its full roster for the first time this season on Dec. 9 vs. Delaware State (DU was 4-3 at the time). JC transfer Marko Krivacevic missed seven games with a broken bone in his wrist. Grad transfer Chas Brown missed the first four games with a foot injury and senior forward Eric James (knee) missed the Cornell game. Sophomore forward Kellon Taylor, who spent the fall as a receiver for DU's FCS football team, joined the team just prior to Thanksgiving (he was not in uniform for the first two games).

• Duquesne has received significant contributions from a pair of freshmen. Six-five swingman Eric Williams Jr. (15.4, 9.7) leads the A-10 with a 9.7 rpg. average - the highest by a Duke since Damian Saunders averaged 11.3 rpg. in 2010. The versatile G/F, who has nine double-doubles, is second on the team with 49 3-pointers and has thrown down a team-high 15 dunks. Williams Jr., who has set DU freshman records for points (34 vs. George Mason) and rebounds (16 vs. Stetson) ranks fifth among Division I freshmen in rebounds per game & tied for fifth in double-doubles (through Jan. 24). Six-nine forward Tydus Verhoeven set a DU freshman record with nine blocks vs. George Mason on Jan. 20. The 6-8 Verhoeven, who has blocked five or more in a game three times, leads the A-10 with 50 blocks in 20.1 minutes per game (2.38 bpg.).

LAST GAME
Jan. 24 • Richmond 77, Duquesne 73 (OT)

• The loss snapped a 10-game home win streak. It was the second-longest home streak in the 30-year history of A.J. Palumbo Center.
• It was DU's third-straight overtime game at home: 101-94 3OT win over La Salle on Jan. 13 & 95-89 2OT win over George Mason on Jan. 20.
• Duquesne rallied from a 16-point deficit (50-34) with 13:41 to take its first lead at 53-52 with 7:18 to go. Eric Williams Jr. scored 11 during the 20-3 run. Tarin Smith forced the overtime with a driving layup with 4.4 seconds left in regulation.
• The teams had one field goal each in the overtime. UR outscored DU 7-2 from the foul line in the extra session. Duquesne, which finished with one more field goal (and three more 3-pointers) than Richmond, was outscored 16-7 from the foul line (UR 16-of-22 and DU 7-of-13).
Eric Williams Jr. led three Dukes in double figures 25 points. Williams Jr., who went 5-of-9 from the 3-point arc, added eight rebounds and a career-high four steals in 42 minutes.
Tarin Smith (15 points) and Mike Lewis II (13 points) also finished in double-digits for DU. Smith added seven rebounds and five assists and Lewis II chipped in a career-high nine rebounds.
• Duquesne was outshot 49.1 percent to 38.2 percent. The Dukes held the Spiders to 5-of-17 from 3-point. DU's starting backcourt of Mike Lewis II (3-of-17) and Rene Castro-Caneddy (1-of-11) was a combined 4-of-28 (3-of-15 from 3-point). Duquesne was 8-of-29 from the arc overall.
• Duquesne's largest lead was two, twice, both in overtime, the last at 73-71 with 2:40 left ... Richmond's largest lead was 16, the last of which came at 50-34 with 13:41 left in regulation ... Duquesne led for 2:02 and Richmond led for 38:46 ... the game was tied for 4:03 ... there were six ties and six lead changes, all of which came from the 7:18 mark of the second half to the end of the game.


 

 

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