Blue Demons Cream Crimson 97-52

After having one of the best seasons in DePaul woman's basketball history in 2004-2005, the expectations were high coming into Friday's regular season opener. The Blue Demon's didn't disappoint, crushing Harvard 97-52 in the second game of the Blue Demon Invitational.

Khara Smith, in her first game back from a foot injury, scored the first basket of the game as DePaul (1-0) started off the game with a 16-0 run, fueled by a strong defense. The Blue Demons kept up the smothering defense, allowing only two Harvard field goals through the first fourteen minutes.

Harvard may have been feeling some nerves as their first six shots resulted in an air ball, a couple of missed lay-ups, as well as two blocked shots. They went on a 7-3 run at the end of the first half to draw within 29, but never got any closer as DePaul refused to let up.

DePaul's lead allowed head coach Doug Bruno to rest his starters, with 12 different players playing double-digit minutes.

"Whenever you have back-to-back games, limited minutes are good," Bruno said.

The points were also spread around as five players scored in double figures, led by Jenna Rubino's 16. Smith had 12 points and six rebounds in only 15 minutes, as Bruno attempted to keep her fresh for tomorrow's championship game, as well as the rest of the season.

Missy Mitidiero sat out the game with a sprained ankle, injured during practice. Bruno doesn't expect her back until the Blue Demon's fly out to Hawaii for the Rainbow Wahine Classic on November 25.

Claudette Towers started in Mitidiero's place and responded well. She had a career-high seven assists and 0 turnovers in sixteen minutes of action. Bruno was pleased, suggesting she had earned herself another start, but not surprised.

"That's what she can do," said Bruno. "That's what we like to expect."

Ciarra Johnson also had a career night, scoring a personal-best 14 points in nineteen minutes. Caprice Smith and Jarietta Benton added 11 and 10 points, respectively.

Harvard was led by Maureen McCaffery's 11 points and got 8 points from both Jessica Holsey and Lauren Fried.

While Harvard (0-1) had a successful 2004-2005 season, boasting a 20-8 overall record, they weren't able to keep up with DePaul's talent level. Bruno acknowledged that his team was superior, and therefore, wasn't overly impressed by the win.

"We were better than them," he said. "We were supposed to do this."

The Blue Demons will face UNLV Saturday night after the Rebels defeated Alabama State 81-59 in the first game Friday night.

Official Box Score

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