PREVIEW: GW at DUQUESNE for RED OUT
Feb. 17, 2017
Duquesne (10-16, 3-10), coming off a 96-66 win over UMass on Wednesday, faces George Washington (13-13, 5-8) in the second of three-straight home games on Sunday, Feb. 19 at 12:00 p.m. (NBCSN). The game, which will be DU's annual RED OUT, is the second of a home-and-home series. GW won the first meeting, 65-63, in Washington, D.C. on Jan. 18.
Duquesne, which lost over 70 percent of its scoring from last season, has incorporated a number of newcomers into the 2016-17 rotation. DU's top four scorers - all starters - are first-year players: freshman Mike Lewis II (13.8 ppg.), graduate transfer Emile Blackman (12.1 ppg.), freshman Isiaha Mike (10.9 ppg.) and Nebraska transfer sophomore Tarin Smith (8.8 ppg.). None of DU's top seven scorers averaged more than 9.2 minutes per game last year.
Lewis II & Mike have combined to earn Atlantic 10 Rookie of the Week six times (three each). It is the first time DU has had two multiple Rookies of the Week in the same year. The last A-10 team to have two rookies earn the honor at least three times in a season is Saint Louis in 2005-06 (Tommie Liddell six times and Kevin Lisch three times).
SERIES QUICK NOTES
DU has scored over 70 twice in the past nine meetings ... once in a 78-62 win at Palumbo Center in 2015 and once in GW's come-from-behind win at Palumbo Center last season ... DU coach Jim Ferry is 1-7 against GW.
GW took the first meeting this season, 65-63 at the Smith Center on Jan. 18 ... Duquesne's Rene Castro had a chance to win it, but his 3-point attempt glanced off the rim at the final horn ... Castro scored 11 of his team-high 13 points in the second half to lead the Duquesne charge ... Mike Lewis II and Emile Blackman added 11 points each for DU, which trailed by as many as 16 in the first half and by 14 with just over 16 minutes remaining.
GW, in its first season under head coach Maurice Joseph, is coming off a 74-63 loss at Davidson on Wednesday ... the Colonials, who are 1-6 on the road in A-10 play, have lost four of their past five ... GW is led by preseason First Team All- A-10 pick, 6-9, 243-pound forward Tyler Cavanaugh (17.0, 7.9) ... Cavanaugh had 15 points and nine rebounds in the defeat at Davidson.
Freshman guard Mike Lewis II (13.8 ppg.)has scored 20 or more in four of his past five games. Lewis II, who is averaging 15.8 ppg. in conference play, has eclipsed his scoring high in each of his last two outings with 24 at Saint Louis and 31 vs. UMass. He is 17-of-26 from the field (.654), including 11-of-13 from 3-point, in his past two games.
Fellow freshman Isiaha Mike went 5-of-5 from the 3-point arc (9-of-12 overall) in scoring 23 points in 22 minutes vs. UMass. Mike added eight rebounds and three steals vs. the Minutemen.
Lewis II (13.8 ppg.) and Mike (10.9 ppg.) are the highest scoring freshman duo in the Atlantic 10.
Grad transfer Emile Blackman, who is averaging 13.9 ppg. in conference play, has scored in double digits in six-straight games. He is shooting .475, including 12-of-21 from 3-point (.571) over that span.
Junior guard Rene Castro has turned it over just five times in 130 minutes over DU's past seven games. Castro has 31 assists and 13 turnovers in conference play. He is averaging 7.6 ppg. in A-10 games.
DU has held eight teams under 40 percent shooting this season: Loyola, Md. (.365), UT Martin (.348), Cleveland State (.385), Pitt (.333), Jackson State (.355), Colgate (.371), at Fordham (.388) & UMass (.387). The Dukes are 7-1 in those games.