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Duquesne beats first-place St. Bonaventure 95-88

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Micah Mason and Derrick Colter combined for 50 points to lead Duquesne to their marquee win of the season Saturday night over Atlantic 10 conference leader St. Bonaventure 95-88.

PITTSBURGH - “It’s huge for us,” Mason said. “[Our early conference losses] did not define us. We came back and got better, and I think we proved that tonight.”

Colter had 23 points, nine assists and seven rebounds while Mason added 27 points and went 9-9 at the line to pull off the upset. L.G. Gill added a double-double with a dozen points and boards.

Colter sparked Duquesne’s offense early by scoring the first six points of the game as the Dukes jumped out in front 8-0. Freshman guard Nelson Kaputo brought the Bonnies back in the game by scoring six points off the bench in just over a minute and a half, but a pair of dunks by TySean Powell kept the Dukes in front 12-8 with 14:14 left in the first.

From there, the lead would swap nine times in the first, partially due to stretches of sloppy play by both sides. In the first 10 minutes and twenty seconds of the game, Duquesne had eight fouls and five turnovers while St. Bonaventure only had three fouls and two giveaways. The Bonnies had their fair mistakes too, shooting just 32.5 percent from the field and missing free throws, shooting just 5-9 from the line compared to their .782 mark on the year.

Mason went into halftime with 11 points and three three-pointers while Eric James had nine points and six boards, but Kaputo’s late three from the corner gave him nine points in the half and the Bonnies a 37-36 lead at the first buzzer.

The teams continued to trade punches well into the second half. Mason’s three-pointer tied the game up at 48 four minutes in, and free-throw by Jordan Tyson knotted it at 55 four minutes later.

Nearing the midway mark of the second half, the Bonnies finally had a chance to pull away. The Dukes’ 55-50 lead had evaporated, and two straight three pointers had capped off an 11-2 run to give them a 61-57 advantage. Head coach Jim Ferry called a timeout to regroup, and it worked.

“I didn’t like our body language,” Ferry said. “I thought we looked like we were playing slow defensively, and we weren’t the whole game.”

Mason agreed that the timeout helped shift momentum.

“They were getting their offensive rebounds back and they were getting 50-50 balls,” Mason said. “After that timeout, we started guarding, we started rebounding and we started beating them to 50-50 balls.”

Colter hit a three to bring the Dukes back to within one and Mason knocked down a layup for the 12th and final lead change of the night to make it 62-61 Dukes with 9:39 to play. 

Duquesne had control of the game from there once their bigman Darius Lewis made an impact. After being held to just one point in the first 30 minutes, the junior center ripped off six tallies in the final 10 to help keep the Dukes in front and build a 82-69 lead with 2:32 to go. Colter and Mason combined to make their last 11 free-throw attempts as time wound down to ice the win.

“It’s another confidence booster,” Gil said. “We’re going to go into the next game with momentum off this win.”

Jaylen Adams led the Bonnies with 22 points while Denzel Gregg added 19 from off the bench, and St. Bonaventure shot 41.7 percent from the field. James ended the night with 16 points and eight rebounds. Duquesne crushed on the glass 49-34.

ON DECK:
Duquesne will travel to VCU Wednesday and will tip-off at 7 p.m.. The Rams are 13-5 on the season and are in 1st place in the A10 with a 5-0 record.

Duquesne Micah MasonNUMB3RS:
1. Gill’s 12 rebounds are a career high.

2. Mason and Colter combined to play 78 minutes (40 for Colter and 38 for Mason).

3. TySean Powell was the only player to come off the bench and score for Duquesne. St. Bonaventure’s bench outscored the Dukes’ 34-10.

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