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UAB defeats Duquesne 77-68 in St. Pete Shootout as Dukes lose for first time this season

Credit: Duquesne University

UAB (8-4) used a late 10-0 spurt to hand previously unbeaten Duquesne (10-1) its first loss of the 2019-20 season with a 77-68 victory over the Dukes before a paltry crowd of 301 in the St. Pete Shootout in St. Petersburg, Fla., on Sunday afternoon. 

Jalen Benjamin, a 5-10 freshman guard from Raleigh, N.C., scored a season-high 18 points for the Blazers, who trailed 47-40 with just over 12 minutes remaining in the contest. 

Junior guard Tyreek Scott-Grayson chipped in 16 points and dished off a game-high six assists and sophomore Tavin Lovan, who shot an impressive 53.2 percent from the field last year as a freshman, added eleven points for UAB.

It was UAB’s fourth consecutive win since losing to 15th-ranked Memphis State by eight points on Dec. 7.

Duquesne, which was off to the program’s best start since 1953-54 when it won its first 22 games, shot a dismal 31 percent from the field, including making just 5 of 27 shots from beyond the arc.

Junior forward Marcus Weathers, coming off a career best 21-point performance against Austin Peay on Saturday, scored a team-high 18 points for the listless Dukes while point guard Sincere Carry and 6-8 center Michael Hughes added 13 points apiece.

The loss by Duquesne leaves Liberty (14-0), San Diego State (12-0) and Auburn (11-0) as the only undefeated Div. I teams in the country.

Duquesne returns to the hardwood next Sunday when it faces Marshall in the second game of a doubleheader in the Cleveland Classic.  Fifth-ranked Ohio State plays No. 25 West Virginia in the opening game. 

UAB will look to extend its winning streak to five when it hosts the Night Hawks of Thomas University, a member of the NAIA’s Sun Conference, on Saturday.

Darcy G. Richardson is a historian and the author of more than a dozen books. His latest is Loyola's Improbable Ramblers: 55 Years in the Making, available now on Amazon.

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