A.J. Palumbo Center (4,406) • Pittsburgh, Pa.
Wed., Mar. 2, 2011 • 7:00 (EST)
DUKES COMPLETE HOME SLATE VS. BONNIES:
Duquesne (17-10, 9-5), which has dropped five of six - including a 62-51 loss at Saint Louis on Saturday - returns home to face St. Bonaventure (15-12, 7-7) on Wednesday, Mar. 2 at 7:00 p.m. It is the final regular season home game for DU seniors Bill Clark, Damian Saunders and Dave Theis (right) who will be honored in a pre-game ceremony. DU, which began conference play with eight consecutive wins, saw that streak - as well as an 11-game overall streak - snapped in a last-second Michael Davenport 3-pointer in a 64-62 loss at SBU on Feb. 5. The defeat began the current 1-5 skid. Duquesne is currently tied for fourth in the Atlantic 10 with Rhode Island. The top four finishers earn a first round bye at the A-10 Championship March 8 & 11-13. Duquesne, which is looking for its school record-tying 10th conference win (10-3 in 1981 & 10-8 in 1991), is 10-4 at home including 9-2 at the on-campus A.J. Palumbo Center. All 17 of DU's wins have been by double-digit margins. Conversely, eight of the Dukes' 10 losses have come by single digits. DU, which has had at least a five point second-half lead in six of its nine losses, has suffered five defeats by four or fewer points. Clark (16.6, 6.3, 66 3-pointers) and Saunders (12.7, 7.7, 72 blocks, 59 steals) have led the way for the Dukes this season. Saunders and Clark rank one-two on DU's career games list with 122 & 121. Saunders will be making his school record 112th start vs. SBU.
Senior preseason All-A10 Damian Saunders, the only Division I player in NCAA history with over 250 career assists (270), steals (264) & blocks (288), is DU's career leader in steals, blocks and games played (122) ... he'll be making his school record 112th start on Wednesday ... Saunders needs nine points to pass Rick Suder (1,459 from 1983-86) to take over the No. 12 spot on the all-time scoring list (he enters the SBU game with 1,451 points) ... Saunders ranks third in all-time rebounds with 975 ... senior Bill Clark, who leads DU at 16.3 ppg., ranks third on DU's all-time list with 218 career 3-pointers and second in career games (121) ... he ranks 8th on the all-time scoring list with 1,555 points ... he needs 51 points to pass No. 7 Sihugo Green (1,605 from 1954-56) ... five-time A-10 Rookie of the Week T.J. McConnell is the only freshman in the country with over 275 points, 100 assists and 70 steals (292-116-77) ... he is 10 steals shy of breaking the A-10 freshman record of 86 set by Temple's Pepe Sanchez in 1997 ... this year's senior class, which is the first to not experience a losing season since 1972-75, is responsible for 71 total wins ... the 71 victories are the most over a four-year period since 1970-73 (74 victories) ... DU had one winning season in the 21 seasons prior to the class of 2011's arrival.
This is the 106th meeting between the Dukes and Bonnies in a series that dates back to Feb. 13, 1920 ... it is also the 60th consecutive season the two have met at least once ... Duquesne leads the overall series 55-50 ... in games played at Pittsburgh, DU leads 36-14 ... the Dukes had won nine of 12 meetings, before the Bonnies took the last two last year in a seven day span (92-80 at Olean on March 3 & 83-71 at Olean on March 9 in the first round of the Atlantic 10 Championship) and added a 64-62 home win on Feb. 5 ... DU head coach Ron Everhart is 5-5 against the Bonnies ... Duquesne owns more conference wins over St. Bonaventure (27) than any other A-10 school.
BONNIES THIS YEAR:
St. Bonaventure, picked to finish 13th in the A-10 preseason poll of league coaches and media, is 15-12 overall and in a three-way tie for seventh at 7-7 in the Atlantic 10 ... the Bonnies are 6-7 on the road, including a 2-5 mark in A-10 road games ... the Bonnies own one of the conference's marquee wins with a 67-66 victory at St. John's on Dec. 7 ... SBU has played three overtime games this season including a three-overtime win over Charlotte (92-88) and a four-OT triumph over Ohio (112-107) ... the lone OT loss came to Virginia Tech (76-68) ... the Bonnies are coming off a 79-65 loss at Saint Joseph's Saturday.
HIS HOME AWAY FROM HOME:
St. Bonaventure junior forward Andrew Nicholson, the 2009 Atlantic 10 Rookie of the Year, has had his way with the Dukes in Pittsburgh. In two career games at Palumbo Center, the Toronto native has put up some big numbers. As a freshman in 2009, Nicholson had 29 points and 12 boards in a 74-68 loss and last year he had 29 points and seven boards in a 70-69 defeat. In the two games, at Palumbo Nicholson is averaging 29.0 ppg. and 9.5 rpg. on 64.9 percent shooting (24-of-37). Nicholson, who was a preseason first team All-A10 pick, leads SBU in scoring (20.5) and rebounding (7.3). He had 28 points (11-of-16) in Saturday's loss at Saint Joseph's.
SAINT LOUIS LEFTOVERS:
Notes from Duquesne's 62-51 loss at Saint Louis on Saturday
Was DU's first double-digit loss of the season ... the SLU lead did not reach double-digits until the game's final minute ... it was the first time the Dukes did not manage at least a four-point lead at some point in the game ... Duquesne led for just 20 seconds (21-20 from 5:56 to 5:36 in the first half) ... Duquesne's total points (51), first-half points (23), field goal percentage (19-of-58, 32.8%), 3-pointers made (2), 3-point percentage (2-of-14, 14.3%) and assists (10) were all season lows ... the 19 field goals tied the season low ... DU's previous low point total was 61 in a 64-61 loss to West Virginia at CONSOL Energy Center ... leading scorer Bill Clark went 1-of-6 from the arc in scoring 11 points ... Clark had a season-high seven turnovers ... Damian Saunders scored 13 of his team-high 15 points in the second half ... the 6-7 senior added eight rebounds and four blocks ... the freshman backcourt of Mike Talley (three points) and T.J. McConnell (four points) shot a combined 3-of-14 ... it was just the second time this season McConnell did not have an assist ... Sean Johnson's seven rebounds (all of which came in 13 first-half minutes) were a career high ... DU, which is assisting on just under 67 percent of its field goals on the season, has assisted on just 51 percent of its FGs (35 assists on 68 field goals) in its past three games ... the Dukes are 6-of-32 (18.8%) from the 3-point arc in their past two.