Pharos-Tribune

Local Sports

March 25, 2014

DePaul women going to Sweet 16

Penny nets 11 points for Blue Demons.

DePaul kept taking the ball from Duke with its intense press, and answering seemingly every big Blue Devils bucket with a 3-pointer.

That energy and efficiency sent the Blue Demons into the second weekend of the NCAA women’s tournament.

DePaul upset Duke 74-65 on Monday night at Durham, N.C., in the second round after hitting a season-high 14 3-pointers.

Seven of them came immediately after baskets by the Blue Devils.

“We have the greenish green light,” guard Brittany Hrynko said. “He doesn’t mind us taking 3s. He said as long as we take them, we have to defend and rebound.’”

Megan Rogowski scored 22 points with six 3s, Megan Podkowa added 18 points and Hrynko had 14 for the seventh-seeded Blue Demons (29-6).

“It has to absolutely be the biggest win for this group of young women this season,” coach Doug Bruno said of a team that has won 18 of 19.

They earned their third appearance in the round of 16 by hitting those 3s and forcing second-seeded but injury-depleted Duke into 21 turnovers with their high-pressure defense.

DePaul will play the James Madison-Texas A&M winner on Saturday in the Lincoln Regional semifinals.

Elizabeth Williams scored 12 points and blocked seven shots. Seniors Haley Peters and Tricia Liston each added 11 in their final game at Cameron Indoor Stadium.

Duke (28-7) led for only 12 seconds and became the first top-four seed to lose in the tournament.

The Blue Devils — who made four straight appearances in the regional finals — became the first No. 2 seed to lose this early since Xavier lost to Louisville in 2011.

“They were on top of our ball handlers, and we didn’t handle it very well,” Peters said. “We just got a little bit rattled, I think, by how aggressive and how much pressure they put on us.”

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