US NCAA: Vanessa de Jesus, Duke absorb first loss


Posted at Dec 10 2020 02:38 PM

US NCAA: Vanessa de Jesus, Duke absorb first loss 1
Fil-Am point guard Vanessa de Jesus (2) had 11 points in a loss to Louisville. Photo courtesy of Duke Women's Basketball on Twitter (@DukeWBB)

Vanessa de Jesus and the Duke University women's basketball team fell to powerhouse University of Louisville, 73-49, for their first loss of the season on Wednesday evening at the Cameron Indoor Stadium (Thursday in Manila).

De Jesus, the freshman point guard, had 11 points, three rebounds, and two assists, but the Blue Devils struggled from the field all game long and couldn't contain Louisville guard Dana Evans.

Duke fell to 3-1 after losing their first game of conference play. Louisville, the second-ranked team in the country, hiked their record to 5-0.

"I thought our group competed hard tonight, especially through the first three quarters," Duke coach Kara Lawson said. "We just didn't shoot it well. We got great looks, I thought. We missed a ton of easy ones -- layups and open threes, shots that we had been making."

The Blue Devils missed their first 12 attempts from the field but got to within four points, 24-20, in the second quarter before the Cardinals pulled away again. They got to within 13 points after the third period, 49-36, as de Jesus sparked a run by hitting Duke's first -- and only -- three-pointer of the game.

Louisville ended the game strong, however, outscoring Duke, 24-13, in the fourth period to complete the big win.

Duke shot just 36.1% from the field and their 49 points scored were a season-low. They also made just one of 16 three-pointers in the game.

"I have to credit Louisville and what they did defensively. For us, 49 points is not going to win you many games," said Lawson.

"That's part of it, you're going to have nights like this, it just happens. But I was proud of our group and how they competed," she added.

Senior forward Jade Williams was the only other Duke player in double-digits with 13 points on top of nine rebounds, three blocks, and an assist. 

Evans led Louisville with 24 points on 9-of-20 shooting. The Cardinals shot 44% for the game, including 7-of-16 from beyond the arc. 

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