Henson stars as No.3 Duke displays its power

Jan. 26, 2014 @ 06:10 PM

Duke made shots at a higher clip than it had in any other game this season on Sunday.

Even with that said Amber Henson’s baskets stood out on a day when the No. 3 Blue Devils romped over Pittsburgh 111-67 in ACC women’s basketball at Cameron Indoor Stadium.

A 20-year-old redshirt freshman, Henson missed the last two seasons while enduring six knee surgeries. She had played in 14 games previously this season, but never as much or as productively as she did against Pittsburgh.

The 6-4 forward played a season-high 16 minutes, scoring 13 points and grabbing four rebounds while also blocking a shot and recording a steal.

“This is definitely the best I’ve ever felt playing,” Henson said.

Her teammates, already glowing from having made a season-best 59.7 percent of their shots as a team in the lopsided win, mobbed Henson in celebration once the game’s final seconds ticked away.

“She’s been through everything in the book and more,” said Duke senior guard Tricia Liston, who scored 23 points on Sunday. “She’s never really had a chance. She’s a great player and nobody’s really gotten a chance to see that. Everyone has heard about it and read about it but that was really the first time we got to see Amber be Amber on the court. We are so glad to have her back.”

Henson contributed to Duke’s stellar shooting day making the first three 3-pointers of her career on just three attempts. A high school all-American before coming to Duke, she had missed her previous 10 3-pointers in a Blue Devils uniform.

“Amber has fought so hard to get back on the floor,” Duke coach Joanne P. McCallie said. “We all feel strongly like that. If Amber makes any shot, we go crazy because we know what she’s been through.”

The Blue Devils (20-1, 7-0 in ACC) have been through trials themselves. Sunday was Duke’s fifth since senior guard Chelsea Gray’s season ended with a broken kneecap.

Another senior guard, Chloe Wells, sat out her second consecutive game with a bruised shin.

Despite all that, Pittsburgh (9-11, 1-5) proved no match as Duke made 17 of its first 22 shots and led 55- 29 at halftime.

“Duke was very, very talented,” said Suzie McConnell, Pitt’s first-year coach. “Its pick your poison. If you try to take away an inside presence, they kill you from the outside. They are so well balanced. They have so many weapons. It was a tough matchup for us across the board. We were undersized and overmatched.”

Duke’s top scorers, Liston (23) and junior center Elizabeth Williams (20), showed the team’s inside-outside balance.

Liston made three of four 3-pointers, giving her a school-record 224 for her career. Abby Waner previously held the record with the 222 she made between 2006-09.

“It’s kind of irrelevant when you’re playing,” Liston said, “but off the court it’s a great accomplishment and something I am very proud of.”

Liston and Williams each reached the 20-point mark for the second consecutive game. Duke’s leading scorer at 17.9 per game, Liston has scored 20 or points in six of Duke’s seven ACC games.

Duke has six double-figure scorers as Haley Peters recorded a double-double with 16 points and 12 rebounds while Alexis Jones had 11 points with seven assists.

Henson and freshman center Oderah Chidom (12 points) starred in reserve roles.

Henson’s play made everyone leave the court with a little extra hop in their step.

“I’m just thankful for all the people around me that have helped me get to this point,” Henson said. “My teammates were so happy for me. People have seen what I’ve gone through and it’s a great moment. I’m very grateful.”

 

No. 3 DUKE 111, PITTSBURGH 67

 

FG

FT

Reb

PITTSBURGH

Min

M-A

M-A

O-T

A

PF

PTS

Logan

32

4-13

8-11

1-4

2

4

17

Briggs

31

3-13

5-7

4-8

0

3

12

Kiesel

37

7-17

4-5

2-4

3

3

19

Davis

20

1-4

1-3

1-2

2

3

3

A Anderson

26

2-7

0-0

2-4

2

3

5

Potvin

2

0-0

0-0

0-0

0

0

0

Welch

20

2-8

1-2

1-3

0

1

7

Gordon

14

0-3

0-0

2-2

1

3

0

McManus

18

2-4

0-1

2-4

0

4

4

Totals

200

21-69

19-29

18-35

10

24

67

Percentages: FG .304, FT .655.

3-Point Goals: 6-25, .240 (Welch 2-7, A. Anderson 1-3, Logan 1-3, Kiesel 1-4, Briggs 1-6, Gordon 0-2).

Team Rebounds: 4.

Blocked Shots: 2 (Logan 2).

Turnovers: 12 (Kiesel 4, Logan 3, A. Anderson 3, McManus, Briggs).

Steals: 9 (A. Anderson 3, Briggs 2, Kiesel 2, McManus, Davis).

Technical Fouls: None.

 

FG

FT

Reb

DUKE

Min

M-A

M-A

O-T

A

PF

PTS

Liston

27

8-10

4-4

1-4

3

3

23

Peters

25

5-12

4-4

4-12

2

3

16

Williams

25

8-11

4-7

1-4

4

2

20

Jones

29

3-6

4-4

0-4

7

2

11

Jackson

26

3-5

3-6

2-5

2

2

9

Johnson

15

0-2

0-0

0-0

1

1

0

McCravey-Cooper

17

2-4

0-2

1-7

1

4

4

Chidom

17

4-6

4-6

1-6

1

3

12

Henson

16

3-5

4-6

3-4

1

3

13

Frush

3

1-1

0-0

0-0

0

0

3

Totals

200

37-62

27-39

15-50

22

23

111

Percentages: FG .597, FT .692.

3-Point Goals: 10-15, .667 (Henson 3-3, Liston 3-4, Peters 2-3, Frush 1-1, Jones 1-3, Johnson 0-1).

Team Rebounds: 4.

Blocked Shots: 6 (Williams 2, Chidom 2, McCravey-Cooper, Henson).

Turnovers: 12 (Peters 3, Liston 2, Jackson 2, Chidom, Williams, Jones).

Steals: 5 (Jones 3, Chidom, Jackson).

Technical Fouls: None.

Pittsburgh

29

38—

67

Duke

55

56—111

 

A_4,504.

Officials_Bryan Brunette, Bob Enterline, Tiara Cruse