DePaul Women Advance, Bruno Gets Win #500

DePaul women's basketball coach Doug Bruno could not have received two finer gifts from his players Monday night in Springfield, Missouri: a win to advance to the WNIT semifinals and his 500th career win.

DePaul (2-0) placed five players in double figures as the Blue Demons routed the Missouri State Lady Bears 82-66 in 2nd round WNIT play.

Bruno, who notched his 400th career win against Missouri State in 2007, did in this game what great coaches do best: he had his team ready to play from the outset.

Keisha Hampton scored eight of DePaul's first 15 points as the Blue Demons jumped out to an early 15-10 lead. The Lady Bears closed to 17-14 on a lay up by Kendra Roberts, but then DePaul did one of the things it does best: make three pointers.

Consecutive threes by China Threatt (16 points, seven assists) Maureen Mulchrone, Sam Quigley (16 points, five assists) and another one by Threatt pushed the Blue Demons' lead to 32-22 at the 7:32 mark.

Taylor Pikes' (10 points, 11 boards and four assists) tip in at the buzzer off a Deanna Ortiz miss sent DePaul into the locker room up 46-35. Pikes finished the first half with six points, seven boards, three assists and two blocked shots.

The Lady Bears (1-1), who routed Lamar 83-60 in the opening round behind Naismith Trophy Watch List nominee Casey Garrison's 33 points, received more Garrison firepower early in the 2nd half as her three pointer cut DePaul's lead to 48-38.

Garrison scored 26 points in the 2nd half against Lamar, but she was unable to duplicate her heroics tonight as DePaul held her to 20 points total on 6-16 shooting from the field.

The Blue Demons answered Garrison's three with a Deanna Ortiz three pointer. Ortiz, who played her best game so far in 2010, finished with five points, two rebounds, a steal and a block in 18:00 of play.

Hampton's jumper at the 6:11 mark, her first points since 13:10 of the first half, pushed DePaul's lead to 74-56, and the Blue Demons extended their lead until the final horn.

DePaul shot 53% from the field for the game including 41% from behind the arc.

Hampton had four of the Blue Demons' 10 blocked shots. The WNIT record for blocked shots in a game is 13 (University of New Mexico v. Pacific, 2001).

Missouri State was held to 28% shooting from the field.

DePaul advances to the WNIT semifinals to play the winner of the Charlotte/Florida game.

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