PREVIEW: Fordham at @DuqMBB
Feb. 8, 2018
Duquesne (15-10, 6-6) returns home to face Fordham (8-15, 3-8) on Saturday, Feb. 10 at Noon in the first game of a men's/women's doubleheader. The men's game, which will be televised by AT&T SportsNet Pittsburgh, is DU's second "Steel City Tribute," as the Dukes will don special edition black and gold uniforms in recognition of Pittsburgh's professional sports teams. Over 30 men's basketball alumni will also be recognized in conjunction with the game. The DU women (20-4, 10-1) take on Saint Joseph's (11-12, 6-5) in the second game of the doubleheader.
Duquesne's last four home games have gone to triple overtime (Jan. 13 win over La Salle), double overtime (Jan. 20 win over George Mason), overtime (Jan. 24 loss to Richmond) with the most-recent game being an 84-81 defeat coming on a St. Bonaventure 3-pointer with 3.8 seconds left last Saturday.
A victory would also give DU its most home wins since 1980-81 (14-2).
Two of DU's five conference losses have come on last-second shots (a buzzer-beating 3-pointer at then No. 24 (AP) Rhode Island and a 3-pointer with 3.8 seconds left vs. St. Bonaventure). The Dukes lost a third game in overtime at home to Richmond.
DU held a 15-point second half lead at URI, and also led by 12 in the second half at VCU.
Duquesne ranks 9th nationally in 3-point field goal percentage defense (.305). The .305 mark is tied for the best in school history. DU ranked 232nd in 3-point defense last season. Opponents are 26-of-56 (.464) from the arc in DU's past three games.
Duquesne is shooting .512 from the field in its past three games. Opponents are shooting .539 over that same span.
DU has outrebounded 17 of 25 opponents (tied once). The Dukes were outboarded 19 times in 2017. DU leads the A-10 at 37.4 rpg.
Duquesne is 11-2 when holding opponents under 70 points and 15-1 when leading with 5:00 left.
Eric Williams Jr., a four-time A-10 Rookie of the Week, is averaging a team-high 15.3 ppg. in conference play. He has four double-doubles in 12 league games. His 11 double-digit rebound games are tied for most in the A-10 and nine double-doubles rank second in the conference and ninth nationally among Division I freshmen.
Tydus Verhoeven, the A-10's leading shot blocker (56, 2.24/g.), has broken the DU freshman record for blocks in a season set by Derrick Alston in 1991 (54). Verhoeven's 56 blocks already rank tied for 10th on DU's career list.
Tarin Smith, who entered this season with 21 3-pointers in 63 career games, has 30 3-pointers in 25 games this year.
Graduate student guard Rene Castro-Caneddy, who entered the season with a 5.0 ppg. scoring average, is scoring at a 13.6 ppg. clip. He has scored in double digits nine times, and totaled 20 or more five times in 12 A-10 games.
Mike Lewis II, who ranks third on DU's all-time free throw percentage list (.843), has made is last 21 in a row. He hasn't missed from the stripe since his last attempt at Saint Louis on Jan. 17.
DU's three overtime games in 2017-18 are its most since a school record six in 2009-10.
This is the 38th game in a series that dates to Dec. 22, 1949 ... Duquesne leads 22-15 ... in games played in Pittsburgh, the Dukes lead 11-6 ... Fordham has won the past two at Palumbo Center ... the Rams have never won three in row in the series in Pittsburgh.
Duquesne snapped a five-game series losing streak with a 74-62 win at the Palumbo Center in 2008 ... since then, the Dukes have won nine of 13 with two of the four losses coming at home.
Last year, the Dukes and Rams split the regular-season series, with DU winning 75-72 in the Bronx and Fordham defeating the Dukes in Pittsburgh, 70-52. DU took the first meeting this season, 64-41, in the Bronx on Jan. 6.
Duquesne is 15-12 against the Rams in Atlantic 10 regular-season play.
Keith Dambrot is 1-0 against the Rams.