LOUISVILLE, Ky. – The 17th-ranked Duke women’s basketball team fell in a hard-fought battle at third-ranked Louisville, 66-60, Thursday evening in Louisville, Ky. The Blue Devils dropped to 11-4 overall and 0-2 in ACC action.
Redshirt sophomore Haley Gorecki led the Blue Devil offense with a career-high 25 points, going 10-of-14 from the floor, 5-of-7 from behind the arc and picked up five boards to go along with six assists, a career-high two blocks and one steal in 34 minutes. With tonight’s performance, the Palatine, Ill., native has notched double-digit scoring for the sixth-straight game.
The Cardinals shot 66.7 percent (4-of-6) from behind the arc in the first quarter to hold a 26-16 lead. Louisville found range early and connected on its first trey at the eight-minute mark and nearing the mid-way point of the first, the Cardinals led 16-4 and were a perfect 7-for-7 from the floor. Sophomore Leaonna Odom and Gorecki paced the Blue Devils in the first frame with eight and six points, respectively, as Gorecki picked up two blocks along the way. Odom connected on three consecutive field goals to put Duke within seven as the Blue Devils shot 80.0 percent (8-of-10) from the field in the first 10 minutes, good for a school record.
Gorecki dominated in the second quarter as she tallied 13 points to lead the team with 19 overall. Freshman Jayda Adams had a nice give-and-go to Odom to set up a fade-away jumper. Gorecki registered her first three on the evening before connecting on two additional for a perfect percentage from deep, cutting the Cardinal lead to seven.
At the half, Duke trailed 43-33 as fifth-year senior Lexie Brown was left scoreless through the first 20 minutes of action for the first time this season. Gorecki led all players with 19 points while Odom totaled 10.
Brown registered her first points from the floor at the 4:54 mark with a nice three off a screen, allowing her to escape the Louisville locked-in defense. The Cardinal defense kept the Blue Devils silent for over four minutes in the third as they extended the lead, 56-42, entering the final 10 minutes.
The Blue Devils notched four treys from Adams, Gorecki and Brown in the fourth to give Duke some momentum heading into the final stretch, cutting the lead to six with under seven minutes remaining. Odom drew a foul driving to the basket and drained both foul shots to put Duke down four before Gorecki’s second trey of the fourth at 2:54 cut the lead to three. Duke’s defense locked-in to keep Louisville scoreless for over two minutes and just 2-of-9 from the floor.
Odom finished the contest with 14 points while freshman Jade Williams registered a career-high 31 minutes and four blocks, both good for career-highs. Adams also played a career-high 31 minutes as well.
Louisville outrebounded Duke on the offensive board 16-8 and 35-29 in total and made attempted 20 foul shots to Duke’s eight.
The Cardinals were led by Asia Durr (22 points), Myisha Hines-Allen (13) and Sam Fuehring (12) and as a team were limited to just five made three-point field-goals to Duke’s eight.
The Blue Devils will return home to host NC State Sunday, Jan. 7. Tipoff is set for 3 p.m., on ACC Network Extra.