Pikes' Play Helps DePaul Stomp Marquette

CHICAGO - One of the inductees in DePaul University's 2010 Hall of Fame presentation that took place during halftime of the Blue Demons' game against the Marquette Golden Eagles was DePaul men's basketball legend Tom Kleinschmidt. Marquette would have done well to inquire if Kleinschmidt was available to suit up for the Golden Eagles in the second half.

DePaul (15-7, 4-4) overcame an early 12-point deficit and defeated Marquette 73-63 in Big East play Sunday afternoon at McGrath Arena.

The Golden Eagles shot 68% (13-19) from the field in the first 11:00 to take a 33-21 lead.

And as games are decided by runs, they are equally decided by adjustments. DePaul's defensive switch from a man-to-man to a 2-3 zone to ultimately a 1-3-1 zone proved effective as the Blue Demons held Marquette to six points the rest of the half to take a 41-39 lead at the break.

"One of the strengths of our team right now is our length and size," DePaul coach Doug Bruno said. "Marquette was breaking us down off the dribble with our man-to-man and our 2-3 zone, so we went with the 1-3-1 and had a little bit more strength in the middle."

A three-pointer by Keisha Hampton (17 points) cut the lead to 33-26 and her jumper from the left baseline with 4:46 left cut Marquette's lead to 35-31. A three-pointer by Sam Quigley (game high 20 points) at the 1:00 mark followed by a Hampton jumper with :18 left gave the Blue Demons their halftime lead. DePaul shot 59.4% from the field in the first half.

"[At halftime] I told the team you have to start the second half like you finished the first half," Bruno said.

His comments were duly noted.

The Blue Demons kept the defensive pressure up as Marquette went scoreless for the first 7:00 of the 2nd half. A lay up by DePaul's Taylor Pikes at the 16:28 mark, the Blue Demons' first points off the bench, pushed the lead to 45-39.

Pikes scored four points, grabbed nine rebounds, dished out four assists, blocked three shots and had two steals in 23 minutes of action.

"Taylor Pikes was awesome," Bruno said. "She gave us a great lift off the bench. And since her recovery from her knee [torn ACL] she has still been in a place of insecurity of what her body is. She has had some moments, but she had been shy and backing off. It was great for her to come out and get some rebounds, make some plays, and she gave us some more length on the zone."

A three-pointer by Hampton from the left corner pushed the lead to 61-50 with 7:12 left in the contest.

Marquette (13-8, 4-4) had held four Big East opponents, including top-ranked Connecticut, below its scoring average and its field goal percentage. The Golden Eagles failed on both accounts versus DePaul.

The Blue Demons held Angel Robinson, Marquette's leading scorer at 12.5 ppg, to six points on 1-18 shooting. Marquette's backcourt shot 8-41 for the game.

DePaul heads to Providence this Wednesday before returning home on February 6th to play Villanova.

Notes: DePaul now leads series 31-20. Marquette is now 4-21 in Chicago and 1-8 at McGrath...DePaul alumni Caprice Smith and Natasha Williams were in attendance.

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