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Duquesne Shocks Pitt in the City Game

For the second time in three nights, one of “lower-tier” teams in the Atlantic 10 pulled off an enormous win over a high-RPI team. On Wednesday night, George Mason went on the road and beat UNI 54-50. And last night, Duquesne pulled off a convincing 64-55 win over cross-town rival Pitt. This was the Dukes’ first win in the “City Game” in 16 years, and it was certainly rather convincing.

To give perspective to how long it had been since Duquesne had beaten Pitt, the game in 2000 was played in Mellon Arena-the old home of the Pittsburgh Penguins. To put it in “Yinzer”terms, that’s five years before Sidney Crosby was drafted by the Penguins. The game last night was played in the new home of the Penguins, PPG Paints arena, which will also host the 2017 Atlantic 10 Tournament.

The Dukes dominated this game in almost every aspect, holding the Panthers to just 33.3% shooting from the field and just 13.6% from three. Emile Blackman lead Duquesne with 21 points, along with 6 rebounds and 2 assists. Mike Lewis II added 15 points while Tarin Smith had 12 points. After, on more than one occasion this season, failing to close out games, Duquesne held on this time to earn the biggest win in years for the Dukes, and certainly the best win under head coach Jim Ferry.

While, for certain, Duquesne is a long ways from contending for the A-10 title, they have certainly shown over the course of the first several games of this season that they can compete with anyone they play. However, this is a team that is capable of a few more upsets this season. And after tonight, I’m sure they’re pretty comfortable with having the A-10 Tournament in PPG Paints Arena.

Daniel Frank is a member of the George Mason Class of 2022. He graduated high school from the Academy For Individual Excellence in Louisville, KY. He ...