Millender scored a game-high 19 points to help No. 21/21 DePaul rout Appalachian State 99-58 in game two of the Maggie Dixon Classic Friday night at McGrath-Phillips Arena.
"I have learned that no matter what the score is, you just have to keep getting better," Millender said. "There is no such thing as garbage time, it's 'getting better' time."
Millender, recovering from a foot injury and, in the prior week the loss of her mother, scored five of DePaul's first six points on a layup and a three-pointer for a 6-0 DePaul lead. The Blue Demons never trailed and held their largest lead of 51 points at 4:04 of the third quarter.
Amarah Coleman added 16 points, Jessica January 14, Deja Cage 13, and Brooke Schulte 10 for DePaul (1-0).
Millender played a clean game, with no personal fouls, one turnover, and 8-10 shooting from the field in 16 minutes of play.
"It's about playing hard and clean," Millender said. "You cannot focus on not fouling, so you have to play aggressive and play your game."
DePaul is now 26-5 in season openers on its home floor and has won 14 of its last 17 home openers.
But injuries have showed up early this season for DePaul. In addition to Mart'e Grays and Megan Waldron out, Tanita Allen had not practiced for six weeks due to a broken hand and has had just two days of practice. Kelly Campbell played just 10 minutes tonight due to an infection she incurred last Sunday, and Lauren Prochaska did not dress due to a concussion she sustained in practice earlier in the week.
DePaul put the game away with a 17-2 midway through the second quarter. The Blue Demons held Appalachian State scoreless for the first 4:00 of the game.
"We did not score well in the open court, especially in the second half with some our reserve players," said DePaul coach Doug Bruno. "We have to get better in other areas of the game like our half court offense."
A 9-0 run by Appalachian State (0-1) over the final 3:07 of the third quarter got the Mountaineers to within 80-38.
DePaul plays the University of Alabama at Birmingham in the title game tomorrow night at 8:00 p.m. Central.
"I thinks it is important that we remember Maggie Dixon on this day" Bruno said. "[DePaul] has its suite named after Maggie and its Captain's Award named after Maggie. She is a young woman we are never going to forget."
Dixon, a former assistant coach for the DePaul women's basketball team, died on April 6, 2006, from a cardiac arrhythmia. She had led the Army women's basketball team to its first ever NCAA Championship appearance just three weeks before her death.