Duquesne shot 52.6 percent and had a 54-32 lead at halftime. Sloppy play at the start of second half again briefly brought back the "10-40" four minutes into the period. The Dukes, who committed eight turnovers in the first 20 minutes, had 14 miscues in the final period.
Baltimore, Md. native Jamar Briscoe scored 34 points for North Carolina Central on 9-for-18 shooting from the floor and 15-of-18 from the charity stripe. Briscoe was one of three NCCU players who fouled out, his fifth resulting in a technical on Coach Henry Dickerson with 1:22 left in the game. NCCU, which is in its second season of Division I play, is now 0-14 with just two of those games played on their home court in Durham, N.C.
Duquesne, which won its second straight and raised its non-conference record to 7-4, placed five guys in double figures led by senior Aaron Jackson's 20 points. Freshman Eric Evans, the Atlantic 10 Conference's Rookie of the Week, scored a career-best 19 points. Sophomore Damian Saunders had a double-double of 18 points and a gamer-high 10 rebounds to go along with three blocks. Junior Jason Duty and sophomore Bill Clark each scored 12 points.
Jackson and Duty both had four assists as the Dukes assisted on 21 of the 31 baskets. Evans also set a career mark with five steals. Freshman Oliver Lewinson had a season-best six rebounds in seven minutes of play.
Saunders scored Duquesne's first six points as the hosts ran out to a 19-6 lead before a well-guarded Briscoe canned a long trey with 12:31 to go in the first half. The Eagles got within seven only to see the Dukes regrow the lead to 35-16, a 19-point advantage just over four minutes later.
Duquesne extended their opening period lead to a high of 23 points and led 54-32 at the break.
The Dukes opened the second half with five turnovers while NC Central made the score 60-44 with 16:11 remaining in the contest.
With Briscoe at the line for three free throws after he was fouled on an attempt at a trey, Coach Ron Everhart quickly benched all five starters in favor of the "five freshmen."
Briscoe made all three and then repeated the feat at the 11:00 mark to cut the margin to 14, 70-56. Michael Glasker hit his second trey a minute-and-a-half later to cut the Dukes' advantage to 10 points, 72-62.
Duquesne ran off five straight but the Eagles wouldn't go away. Glasker hit a 15-footer shot on 5-1 fastbreak that returned the lead to 10, 77-67, 7:14 to go.
This time the Red and Blue scored six straight but again NCCU responded, this time with a pair of dunks by center Stevy Worah-Ozimo to get the spread back to 12, 83-71, at the 3:45 mark. NCCU couldn't get any closer the rest of the way.
Worah-Ozimo scored 14 points and led the Eagles with seven rebounds and two blocks. Bryan Ayala added 11 points. Glasker dished out four assists and had three steals.
Duquesne shot 45.6 percent for the game including seven three-pointers and made 28-of-36 from the free throw line (77.8%). And for the second straight game, the Dukes outrebounded the opposition, this time by 19, 51-32.
NCCU shot 50.0 percent in the second half (15/30), 43.8% for the game and had 27 fastbreak points and 23 off DU TOs. Duquesne, with 21 offensive boards, had 21 second chance points and scored 38 in the paint.
The Red and Blue return to action following the Christmas break on Sunday, December 28, 2008, at Robert Morris in a 7:00 p.m. match in Moon Township.
- The "five freshman" who make up the second line are Evans, Lewinson, Chase Robinson, David Theis and B.J. Monteiro.
- Duquesne and North Carolina Central both played in the Drake Iowa Realty Tournament last season but didn't meet. The Eagles were 4-26 in 2007-08. (NCCU again competed in this tournament earlier this month.)
- NCCU was a founding member of the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference, but left in 1980 when the conference opted to move from Division II to Division I.
- An 11th player and sixth frosh saw action for Duquesne: Aleksandar Milovic took a shot and grabbed a rebound in the final 1:22.