Posted Thursday, Feb. 8, 11:20 p.m.
For the first five minutes of the GW women's basketball team's 76-46 home win over Duquesne Thursday night, the action could have been called 'the Sarah-Jo Lawrence show.' The junior scored the team's first eight points on two three-point shots and another jumper, while the Dukes remained scoreless. Lawrence finished the game with 12 points, one of four Colonials in double-digits.
After breaking into the top 10 for the first time in ten years, No. 8/9 GW (AP, ESPN/USA Today) showed Duquesne why it deserves to be there. The Colonials dominated their opponents in shooting percentage (51.6 percent compared to 33.3 percent), rebounds (40-33), and blocks (five to one). GW (20-2, 9-0 Atlantic 10) also registered 17 steals compared to the Dukes' (7-15, 2-7 A-10) six.
GW's 20th win, in 22 games, marked coach Joe McKeown's 16th season with 20 or more wins in 18 years with the Colonials. It is also the fewest amount of games it has taken the program to reach 20 wins.
"This team, to win 20 games, with only two losses, it says a lot for them. We've played as tough a schedule as we could play," McKeown said.
The dominant win gave McKeown an opportunity to exercise his bench. Junior Kim Beck, who had 13 points on 5-for-8 shooting, averages just less than 37 minutes per game but played 28 minutes Thursday. No starter saw the floor for more than 30 minutes. Instead, three bench players saw double-digit time.
The Colonials never trailed and were tied twice in the first half before a 16-4 run to end the period put GW up 37-25. To open the second half, a second run, this time a 14-2 advantage for the Colonials, gave GW a 24-point lead.
"The burst at the beginning of the second half just blew the game open," McKeown said.
Senior Kenan Cole was GW's other player in double-digits, with 11 points, while Duquesne's Loui Hall had 17 points.
GW hosts 13-10 (3-5 A-10) St. Bonaventure Sunday at 2 p.m.