DU Drops La Roche, 95-48, in Exhibition Match

Duquesne's men's basketball team, behind four three-pointers by a quartet of DU veterans, rolled out to a 18-0 edge on the way to a 95-48 victory over Division III La Roche College before a crowd of 1,819 Saturday night at the Palumbo Center on the Bluff.

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Duquesne met expectations with a 47-point win over nearby La Roche College of the Allegheny Mountain Collegiate Conference.

DU opened play with the four returnees from last year's starting lineup: senior Jason Duty, juniors Bill Clark and Damian Saunders and sophomore Melquan Bolding. The spot vacated by now European-pro Aaron Jackson was filled by sophomore Eric Evans.

The Dukes were led by Saunders' 17 points, eight rebounds, four assists, two blocks and two steals. Both takeaways led to fastbreak points by the A-10 second teamer.

Coach Ron Everhart's first subs were freshmen Sean Johnson and Andre Marhold, redshirt freshman Rodrigo Peggau and junior walk-on Lucas Newton. Sophomores Oliver Lewinson and Chase Robinson also saw first half action. The Dukes had a 55-20 lead at the break.

La Roche answered the Dukes' first second half basket with a short hook from the baseline by David Culp.

Clark, an Atlantic 10 Conference preseason third team selection, capped DU's 11-4 run with a steal and break away layup for a 68-26 Duquesne edge, that necessitated another timeout by Redhawks' head coach Scott Lang.

The break worked for the visitors who ran off nine straight points before a Bolding jumper stopped the streak, the score 70-35 with 12:12 left to go. La Roche cut the lead to 31 points, 74-43, with 8:01 remaining. The final 47-point margin was DU's largest.

Five other Duquesne players hit double digits: Evans with 15 points, Bolding and Johnson each had 13, and Clark and Peggau added 10 points apiece. Evans led the winners with five assists and Clark had three steals.

The Dukes shot 47.1 percent from the floor, 33.3 percent from beyond the arc but just 47.6% from the foul line. One the other hand, DU committed just four turnovers, one in the opening 20 minutes, and converted 21 LRC turnovers into 26 points.

La Roche was led by Mann Laron's 14 points. Grazier Dyland had four assists and six Redhawks each had three rebounds.

Duquesne outbounded the visitors 51 to 35, with 20 offensive grabs resulting in 15 second chance points. The Dukes assist-to-turnover ratio was 4.50 (18/4) while LRC's mark was 0.52 (11/21).

The Dukes open the 2009-10 season next Friday, November 13, 2009, against Nicholls State of the Southland Conference at 8:00 p.m. on the Palumbo Center court.