The Blue Demons (17-12, 8-7) bounced back from an emotional 78-54 loss on Tuesday to Notre Dame in South Bend.
DePaul's forward Wilson Chandler found plenty of room to roam his way to the basket as he racked up his seventh double-double of the season with a team leading 14 points and 10 rebounds. "It was very important, we didn't play aggressive at all at Notre Dame," said Chandler. "So it was important to come out and play good."
Cincinnati's John Williamson led all scorers with 16 points in a rough outing for the Bearcats. "This is probably the worst game we've played in a couple months," said Cincinnati coach Mick Cronin. "Our offense was abysmal. That might be a compliment."
The Blue Demons held an opponent to under 50 points for the third time this season. The Bearcats shot 33.3% from the field and just 15.4% from behind the arc. DePaul also forced 20 turnovers and scored 14 points off of Cincinnati miscues. "They did a great job defensively against us," said Cronin.
Blue Demons coach Jerry Wainwright credited Chandler's defensive play. "I thought positionally, we got back to playing good defense. Our ability to alter shots is big," said Wainwright. "I thought Chandler was fabulous on defense today. He switched, he affected drives, he didn't get in foul trouble, he still had 10 rebounds. I thought he did a great job."
Blue Demons coach Jerry Wainwright worked his team hard in a practice Friday at Allstate Arena. "We had a very conservative game plan," Wainwright said. "We wanted to go back and try to establish some basics. Our kids are still emotionally recovering from Tuesday night. They felt embarrassed. We practiced here yesterday for almost three hours and 15 minutes. I crushed them"
Cronin was asked if the Blue Demons are a NCAA tournament team. "I think they can be," Mick replied. "I saw the Notre Dame game, that was an aberration. They're going to go to New York thinking if they win a couple, they can get in. That's going to make them dangerous in the Garden. If these kids continue to listen and buy into (Coach Wainwright). He's a great coach with an unbelievable proven track record. If they play defense and take good shots, they've got the talent to make some noise in March. They've got to believe in Coach Wainwright. I think that's the key for them. He's taken other teams without that much talent to the tournament and he's won games in the tournament. He knows the way, they just got to follow their leader."
Game Notes from DePaul Sports Information
The win improves DePaul to 12-2 at home, the Blue Demons have won four straight in Rosemont and 14 of their last 16 dating back to last season… DePaul has won the last four meetings (and five of the last six) with the Bearcats in Rosemont
Sammy Mejia moved into 12th place on DePaul's all-time scoring list passing Terry Cummings
This was Jerry Wainwright's first victory over Cincinnati in six tries… the win ensures DePaul of finishing .500 or above in BIG EAST Conference play
DePaul is now 15-0 when leading with 5:00 remaining in the game
The 15-point halftime lead was DePaul's largest of the season in BIG EAST play
Wilson Chandler posted his seventh double-double of the season and the 10th of his career
Today was the third time DePaul has held an opponent under 50 points this season, that is the first time the Blue Demons have accomplished that feat since the 2002-03 campaign
Will Walker scored his first points since the St. John's game on January 16th.
Official Box Score
DePaul Bounces Back with 58-45 Win Over Cincy
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