Williams hits 21 as Duke drubs Pfeiffer in first exhibition | Sports

Williams hits 21 as Duke drubs Pfeiffer in first exhibition

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CAMERON INDOOR STADIUM/DURHAM Duke opens exhibition play against Division II Pfeiffer of Conference Carolinas, and fortunately for the competition they won’t be using the experimental 10-second backcourt rule.

Duke center Elizabeth Williams
The Blue Devils, who went 32-4 last season in their second straight ACC title campaign, are ranked No. 8 in both preseason polls. Pfeiffer went 14-13 last season.

Joanne P. McCallie’s club will start super freshman center Elizabeth Williams along with sophomores Haley Peters and Chelsea Gray on the wings and senior Shay Selby along with sophomore Chloe Wells in the backcourt.

The Blue Devils place six players in double figures en route to the 112-27 rout.

Duke never trails, scoring the game’s first 12 points and leading 53-16 at halftime.

The biggest lead is the final score, on freshman Ka’lia Johnson’s layup with 38 seconds left.

Williams leads the Blue Devils with 21 points, nine rebounds and seven blocks, while Gray adds 15 points with eight assists and seven steals and Wells 15 with five assists and five steals.

Selby finishes with 11 points and seven steals, while Tricia Liston and Richa Jackson come off the bench for 10 points apiece.

Freshman Jodie Lemons leads Pfeiffer with 12 points.

Duke shoots 52.7 percent to Pfeiffer’s 19.6, wins the rebound battle 62-21 and forces 40 turnovers to 14 of its own. The Blue Devils have 32 steals.

They said it …
Duke coach Joanne P. McCallie: “We’re just very excited to get started after being up against each other so much in practice. I feel the team really wants to play other people and see what we can do. I was pleased we put together two halves of intensity. In a game like that, it’s very easy to get distracted by the score and play to it. But we were able to do what we do for two halves.”

Pfeiffer coach Jill Thomas: “All I can do is smile. This is an experience. It’s fun. We’ve got to be tougher, no question. We knew going into this game they were going to be bigger, stronger and faster. We didn’t do a good job of boxing out. We’re definitely going to learn from it. We’re obviously not going to play a team this big the rest of the season.”

Williams: “I had a good time. I had fun. I just tried to be aggressive. I wanted to hustle, play hard and sprint the floor. But I missed a lot of easy shots and was rushing them a little bit. I could have been a little bit more patient.”

Selby: “I think when everyone comes in aggressive on defense it gets our offense going. It gets us excited when we get steals. I don’t think we set out and say. Guards: finish! But it’s always in the back of our mind that we want to go hard.”

What does it all mean?
That Duke looks solid, relaxed and balanced.

Stars of the game

1. Williams.
2. Gray.
3. Wells.

Play of the game
Liston’s 3-point play to make it 29-6 with 9:47 left in the first half.

Up next
Duke vs. Lander (exh.), Sunday, 2 p.m.
Pfeiffer at Lenoir-Rhyne, Nov. 11, 8 p.m.

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