JMU Falls, 90-88

Duquesne Wins In Overtime

Posted: November 20, 2012

PITTSBURGH — Freshman Andre Nation was surprised to learn in the huddle that he would be shooting a 3-pointer for James Madison’s final look in its overtime game at Duquesne on Monday night.


But trailing by two points, JMU coach Matt Brady wanted to play for the win with his hottest shooter.


“We had already played darn near 45 minutes. I thought we were a little spent, we thought we could get a quality look; you know we executed the play exactly the way we drew it up,” Brady said.


Nation came off a curl, received the ball on the wing and rose for an open 3-point attempt that could have put the Dukes on top in the waning seconds. His shot was on line but rattled off the back rim and out. Nation got his own rebound but couldn’t control the ball after dribbling into a scrum, allowing Duquesne to escape with the win, 90-88.


“I thought it was going in,” Nation, wearing purple Beats By Dre headphones around his neck outside Madison’s locker room, said after the game. “Just hit the back iron. God told me it wasn’t meant for me, that’s it. I’ll make the next one.”


As Brady said, the Dukes’ freshmen don’t lack for confidence. Nation had plenty of it during a 19-point performance that helped JMU reach overtime in the first place. Trailing 81-74 with just over 2:30 remaining, the Dukes scored the final seven points of regulation – including Nation’s third 3-pointer of the night – to send the game to extra time.


Thanks to three quick Duquesne turnovers, Madison (0-2) went ahead by three points in OT, but Duquesne (1-2) fought back to take the lead on its home court.


“We just fought,” Brady said. “Our guys fought hard, and played with passion. To get back, and to get the lead was positive. There’s positives and there’s certainly some things we clearly need to get better at.”


JMU has now allowed 190 points through two games. The undersized Dukes won the rebounding battle 39-33 but didn’t play great first-shot defense, allowing Duquesne to shoot 53.3 percent from the floor, including nearly 70 percent in the first half. Duquesne’s quick guards used penetration to cut through the Dukes’ defense and get open looks.


Madison stayed in the game thanks to 12-of-24 3-point shooting, and the all-around play of senior Rayshawn Goins, who led the team in scoring for the second time in as many games. The power forward made both his 3-point attempts and was the Dukes’ lone post threat, finishing with 20 points and 15 rebounds – both game bests.


Goins thought the Dukes took a step in the right direction, even in defeat.


“I feel like we went out there and fought,” he said. “Unfortunately we didn’t get the win, but I felt like we all came together as a unit. That’s big. That got a lot to do with team bonding. We see what we can do; we just have to go right back to the drawing board and fix what we didn’t do right today.”


Madison was playing without senior forward Andrey Semenov, who suffered a strained groin two weeks ago. Brady said Semenov, who would be a starter, will probably miss all three of this week’s Legends Classic games at the Palumbo Center, as well as Saturday’s game at Miami of Ohio.


Without the 6-7 forward, Madison went small all game, even having 6-5 swingman Alionue Diouf take the opening tip-off.


Diouf (14 points) was one of six players who scored eight or more. Point guard Devon Moore had five rebounds and five assists to go with his 13 points before fouling out late in overtime.


Down two with 26 seconds to play, Moore grabbed Duquesne guard Derrick Colter, sending the freshman to the free-throw line with a chance to make it a two-possession game. Instead, Colter missed both shots, allowing JMU an opportunity to tie.


Without calling timeout, the Dukes drove the ball down court and freshman guard Ron Curry misfired a contested jump shot. Diouf controlled the rebound before it was knocked out of bounds by a Duquesne player. The Dukes called timeout and set up Nation for the go-ahead try.


The Dukes will still be searching for their first win today against 3-1 Youngstown State, which lost the Monday evening game in overtime against North Dakota State.


It will be a quick turn-around for the Dukes, whose game did not end until close to 10 p.m.


“What we signed up for man,” Goins said. “College basketball. Got to get ready.”