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Mason, Colter lead Duquesne over St. Louis

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Micah Mason and Derrick Colter each scored 23 points as Duquesne pulled away from St. Louis in the second half for a 78-67 win on Saturday evening.

Micah Mason’s 23 points to go along with Derrick Colter’s strong second half led Duquesne to a 78 – 67 win over the St. Louis Billikens at Chaifetz Arena in St. Louis, Mo.

Duquesne now has won five of their past six games, improving to 15-7 overall and 5-4 in Atlantic 10 play. It’s the Dukes second win over the Billikens (8-13, 3-6) this season.

Colter made up for a slow start in the second half, scoring 20 of his 23 points on 5-11 shooting with four assists. Mason’s 23 points came on 8 of 18 shots along with five 3-pointers.

The Dukes shot just 39 percent from the floor but rode a strong defense to victory. Duquesne, which is holding opponents to under 40 percent shooting on the season, held St. Louis to 38 percent on Saturday.

The Billikens started the game with a quick 9-0 lead as guard Ash Yacoubou knocked down three 3-pointers on his team’s first three possessions. Duquesne struggled in the first 10 minutes, only shooting 17 percent from the field.

At the five-minute mark in the first half, Duquesne had only 12 points, with eight of those coming off of 10 Billikens’ turnovers. With just over three minutes remaining, a Micah Mason 3-pointer and a Darius Lewis slam cut the deficit to three, part of a 12-0 run that eventually put Duquesne on top 24-23.

The Billikens led for over 17 minutes in the first half, but Duquesne finished strong and took a 30-27 lead into the break. A combination of strong free throw shooting (7 for 7) and outrebounding St. Louis by six was the key to the Dukes comeback.
 
The second half started with Duquesne turning the ball over five times in the first four minutes; however, they maintained their lead as St. Louis made only one basket in nine attempts.

Duquense extended their lead to seven on a Mason half court pass to a driving Colter, who was fouled as he rolled the ball in over a Billikens defender – only Colter’s second made basket of the game.

Mason picked up his fourth foul at the 10:02 mark, but then Colter began to take over. The Dukes’ senior point guard hit a midrange jump shot and followed that up with a pullup 3-pointer from the top of the key.
 
With 7:53 left in the game, Duquesne went up 53-45 as Colter passed to Eric James for an alley-oop dunk. Another three by Colter with five minutes left put Duquesne up double digits.

The Billikens cut the Dukes lead to five, but Duquesne made their free throws down the stretch, finishing the game 21 for 26.

Yacoubou led the Billikens with 18 points and made five of seven 3-pointers.

Duquesne has a week off to prepare for Davidson at home Feb. 6.

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