Duquesne vs. Temple Women's Preview

by Rogabee

NOTE:  GAMETIME is 4PM for a doubleheader.

Duquesne:  13-4, #54 in the RPI (2-3 vs. RPI top 100), 3-4 on the road
Temple:  8-8, #62 RPI (1-7 vs. RPI top 50, 4-7 vs. RPI top 100)

The Dukes will have a week off to prepare for a Temple team that could give the Dukes a quality W they'll desperately need come March.  Temple will present a tough challenge for the Dukes, however.  Temple for a while earlier this year started three transfers - Shey Peddy (leading scorer at 15 PPG) from Wright State, Brittany Lewis of Virginia Tech, and Joelle Connelly, a center out of Hofstra.  However, Connelly has been replaced in the starting lineup by 6-4 Victoria Macaulay and hasn't played in 2 of the last 4 games. 

For those that were asking for the Dukes to schedule up, here's the possible reason why teams don't.  Temple enters their game against the Dukes with an 8-8 record after facing 11 top 100 teams in their first 16 games.  If you play them and don't beat them, it doesn't do much for your resume, and is perhaps a reason why the Dukes are in the "First 4 Out" category in Creme's bracketology and Temple is not mentioned.

While I didn't go to the Temple women's game last year (I made the trip to Olean to watch the men play instead), reports were that Temple was more athletic than the Dukes and used their athleticism to help lead them to the win. 

Temple features Shey Peddy, a 5-7 guard who was an A10 first teamer last year as a junior, A10 first team all-defensive team as well, and Big 5 POY.  Kristen McCarthy (a 6-0 guard) was named A10 POW and Big 5 player of the week for her performance last week, including a bucket with 0.2 seconds to go to lead the Owls to a 1 point win at Richmond.

Other notes:
Dan Durkin, previous coach at Duquesne, is now an assistant at Temple.
The Dukes are 1-0 this year with a full week to prepare for a team, defeating Pitt 70-57.

Keys to the game:
1.  Temple's ball pressure vs. Jocelyn Floyd.  Floyd (Duquesne's PG now with Vanessa Abel out) has turned the ball over some against good pressure defenses, and Temple figures to pressure her.

2.  Rebounding.  Temple is a nice +2.7 boards per game, especially given their brutal schedule.  The Dukes, especially recently, have been playing a physical brand of basketball and are a +1.3 boards/game over their opponents. 

3.  How will the Dukes fare against Temple's athleticism?

3.  How will the Dukes respond on the road?  Thus far, the Dukes have been a mediocre road team, going 3-4.  Those wins are over St. Francis (PA) by 4, North Dakota State by 6, and a down Pitt team that was a semi-neutral game anyway, and one of those losses was to North Dakota, a team not in the RPI top 200. 

4.  Can the Dukes wear down Temple or get some of the Temple women in foul trouble?  In all of their three A10 games thus far, Temple has played 4 women at least 33 minutes.  Shea Peddy rarely if ever leaves the floor.  While Suzie McConnell-Serio hasn't used the bench as much, she's still using it as much, if not more, than Cardoza.

5.  Shea Peddy and Alex Gensler's shooting.  Just from looking at stats, Peddy has been hot-and-cold this year.  So has Gensler. 

6.  Overall outside shooting for the Dukes.  It looks like Temple's main weakness on the statsheet is that they're not defending the trey well.  The Dukes have been hot and cold all year and may need to start knocking down their share this afternoon.

6.  Temple's FT shooting.  For the season, they are only shooting 64.8% from the line.  At Duquesne, we've seen how this can affect our team on the men's side.

Best of luck and GO DUKES!