Billikens Pummel Duquesne, 68-41
ST. LOUIS - Five players scored in double figures for Saint Louis, and the Billikens held Duquesne to 31 percent from the field in a 68-41 Atlantic 10 Conference victory Saturday night at Chaifetz Arena.
Dwayne Evans registered game highs of 13 points and 10 rebounds (four offensive) for his third double-double of the season and the eighth of his career. Brian Conklin had 11 points and six rebounds and tied his career best with a game-high four assists.
Mike McCall Jr. tallied 11 points and collected a career- and game-high four steals for the Billikens (15-4, 3-2 A-10). Kwamain Mitchell and Kyle Cassity scored 10 points apiece, with Mitchell adding three steals. Rob Loe tied his career high with three blocks.
Duquesne (12-8, 3-3 A-10) got 12 points from Eric Evans and eight points and seven rebounds from Mamadou Datt.
Saint Louis committed just nine turnovers - its eighth single-digit total of the season - and topped Duquesne 38-30 on the boards. The Billikens held the Dukes to season lows in points, second-half points (15), field goals (17) and field goal percentage.
The Billikens began the second half with a 12-3 run that gave them a 20-point lead. Evans rang up a long jumper from the right wing, Mitchell drilled a 3-pointer and Evans grabbed an offensive rebound and scored. Loe made a layup and Cassity drilled a trifecta from the left wing, and Saint Louis led 49-29.
A pair of 3-pointers and a layup comprised an 8-0 run that pulled Duquesne to within 12 points, 49-37, but that was as close as the Dukes would get. They scored just four points in the final 11:55 as the Billikens closed the game with a 19-4 spurt.
The first half was defined by three big spurts - two by Saint Louis and one by Duquesne.
The Billikens scored on their first six and seven of their first eight possessions to build a 16-4 cushion. Evans' driving layup and Cassity's 3-pointer were followed by two buckets and a pair of free throws by Conklin. Cassity made a layup, and McCall Jr. threw in a long desperation 3-pointer as the shot clock expired to cap the run.
Duquesne answered with a 16-3 flurry. Datt scored six points, and Evans and T.J. McConnell tallied five apiece as Duquesne took a 20-19 lead.
Cassity's driving layup put Saint Louis back on top for good and triggered an 18-6 run that saw five other Billikens score. Jordair Jett sank both ends of a 1-and-1, Evans registered a traditional three-point play, and McCall hit a free throw and a trey.
Conklin netted two free throws and a layup, and Cody Ellis buried a 3-pointer from the right corner that gave the Bills a 37-24 advantage. McConnell's buzzer-beater made it 37-26 SLU at the break.The Billikens travel to Cincinnati Wednesday, Jan. 25, to take on Xavier. Tip time at Cintas Center is 6 p.m. (CT), and the game will be televised by Fox Sports Midwest.