Posted: December 7, 2009
BETHLEHEM, Pa. – The Lehigh women’s basketball team made it 21 straight home victories as it came back to defeat the Duquesne Dukes 62-52 Monday night at Stabler Arena. Trailing by three at the half, the Mountain Hawks were able to clamp down on defense and find their rhythm on the offensive end in the second half. Senior Alex Ross led all scorers as she netted a season-high 21 points which included going 5-for-9 from beyond the arc. Ross now sits one three-pointer away from tying Sara Ellis ‘07 for the all-time program record with 238. Lehigh improves its record to 7-2 on the season while Duquesne drops to 6-3.
“The difference in the second half was that we controlled the boards,” head coach Sue Troyan said. “We struggled offensively in the first half, but so did Duquesne. We kept giving them second and third chances which allowed them to stay in the game.”
Ross added, “We came out and picked up the intensity in the second half. We weren’t clicking or running in the first half which threw us off our offensive game. The coaches came in at halftime and told us to get back to playing our game, playing more up-tempo.”
Junior Erica Prosser was Lehigh’s second leading scorer as she contributed 15 points, 13 of which came in the second half. The Pittsburgh, Pa. native also had a season-high eight assists which is one shy of her career-high.
“Erica had a great game, but Duquesne did a good job of containing her in the first half,” Troyan said. “She used her defense in the second half to get into an offensive flow and it made a big difference.”
Senior Tricia Smith was Lehigh’s leading rebounder as she collected eight, while junior Courtney Dentler finished second with seven.
The Mountain Hawks finished the game shooting 40 percent from the floor and they held the Dukes to only 31 percent (17 percent from the three). Duquesne won the battle of the boards as it collected 49 compared to Lehigh’s 36.
Duquesne was led by junior Kelly Britcher who had 12 points and senior Keri Pryor who had 10.
Lehigh picked up right where it left off against Villanova on Saturday night as it built an 8-0 lead over Duquesne. The Mountain Hawks held the Dukes scoreless for the first 7:17 of the game and during that stretch Duquesne was 0-for-17 from the field.
The tide quickly turned in the Dukes’ favor though as they went on a 9-0 run to claim the lead. Duquesne went onto finish the half out-scoring Lehigh 23-12 and took a 23-20 lead into the locker room.
Both teams struggled shooting in the half as Duquesne shot 28 percent (0-for-6 on three-pointers) and the Mountain Hawks were not that much better shooting 33 percent. A big reason the Dukes were able to come back in the half was their rebounding as they out rebounded Lehigh 29 to 17 which included grabbing 14 on the offensive glass.
The Mountain Hawks were led by Dentler and Ross who finished with eight points apiece. Duquesne was well balanced in the first half as nine different players scored at least one point.
With the score tied at 27, Lehigh went on an 11-0 run to take control of the game early in the second half. The closest Duquesne would get to the Mountain Hawks the rest of the game was three points and the Brown and White was able to close out the game at the foul line.
Lehigh will have 11 days off for final exams before it hits the court against NJIT on December 18, at 7 p.m. in Stabler Arena. Tickets are available in advance by calling 610-7LU-GAME or online at Lehighsports.com, and on game day at the Stabler Arena box office 60 minutes prior to tipoff.Mountain Hawks Post-Game Extra