- Associated Press - Thursday, January 16, 2014

DURHAM, N.C. (AP) - Virginia coach Joanne Boyle thought it was one of the Cavaliers’ worst games of the season, and Faith Randolph also felt her team didn’t play very well.

Awfully tough to keep pace with No. 3 Duke with that type of performance.

Randolph and Lexie Gerson had 13 points apiece, but the Cavaliers shot 31 percent from the field in a 90-55 loss at the Blue Devils on Thursday night.

“Duke is really good,” said Boyle, a Duke alumna and former Blue Devil assistant coach whose team lost 79-72 against No. 2 Notre Dame on Sunday. “(But) I thought this was one of our worst performances in terms of effort. I don’t think we played hard at all.

“We practice harder than we played here tonight. We came out flat and let our offense affect our defense. We got run on transition all night long and got ourselves in a hole, and against a great team it’s hard to come back.”

Tricia Liston scored 21 points and tied her career high with 12 rebounds, helping Duke to its biggest rout in the history of the series.

The Blue Devils had five players score in double figures in their first game since Chelsea Gray broke her right kneecap Sunday against Boston College, sidelining the senior guard for the rest of the season. Gray dislocated the same kneecap last season, keeping her out of the ACC and NCAA tournaments.

Elizabeth Williams had 17 points, seven rebounds and six blocked shots for Duke (17-1, 4-0 Atlantic Coast Conference), which beat Virginia for the 21st straight time. Richa Jackson finished with 16 points, freshman Oderah Chidom had 11 and Alexis Jones scored 10.

Sarah Imovbioh had nine points and 12 rebounds for Virginia (8-9, 1-3).

Duke led 47-23 at halftime of its 41st straight conference win at Cameron Indoor Stadium.

“I thought it was a great team, aggressive effort,” Duke coach Joanne P. McCallie said. “Everybody contributed and everybody attacked.

“We tried to keep pace and push the tempo and I thought we did a better job of doing that, Tricia hitting the boards like she did and competing like she did. And Richa was dead on and very balanced. We talked as a group (about Gray), but I didn’t have to emphasize anything. What are you going to say? We all took it to heart and we’ll continue to take it to heart. We miss her a lot, but she’s a great coach on the sideline.”

The Blue Devils shot 55.9 percent from the floor to Virginia’s 31.0 and won the rebound battle 50-36.

Duke never trailed. It opened a 20-4 lead on a Haley Peters 3-pointer with 15:08 left in the first half.

“Duke is an all-around great team,” Gerson said. “They are huge, very big. They run transitions and they do all the little things.”

All of Randolph’s scoring came in the first half.

“I don’t think (Duke) did anything differently defensively,” Randolph said. “I just think we didn’t come out hard. Like Coach said, our offense affected our defense and vice-versa.”



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