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Wildcats close within eight but can't catch up

FREEPORT, Bahamas (AP) -- Duke coach Gail Goestenkors took
Monique Currie aside before Saturday's game with Kansas State and
explained that it was time to live in the present.

"I was telling her that she was playing like last year,
standing and watching and letting others set the tone,"
Goestenkors said after the No. 10 Blue Devils' 63-51 win over the
No. 16 Wildcats. "That was fine when we had two All-Americans. But
this year, she has to set the tone for us and have the attack
mind-set to give the team confidence."

Currie had plenty of that against Kansas State in the
championship game of the Junkanoo Jam tournament's Freeport
Division, scoring a game-high 25 points and grabbing eight
rebounds.

Duke lost Alana Beard, the No. 2 WNBA draft pick in April, and
Iciss Tillis as starters from last season's Elite Eight team. And
junior point guard Lindsey Harding, another starter, is currently
suspended.

But with Currie, a strong front line led by 6-foot-7 Alison
Bales and 6-foot-3 Mistie Williams, and a talented freshman guard
Wanisha Smith, the Blue Devils held preseason All-American Kendra
Wecker to 15 points and the Wildcats to 27.9 percent from the
field.

Alison Bales added 11 points and 13 rebounds for Duke (5-1),
which shot 27-for-39 from the free throw line compared to 8-of-12
for Kansas State (3-1).

"We look to push the ball and penetrate with any game we
play," said Currie. "I think that's one of our biggest strengths
going to the basket and finishing or forcing them to foul us."

Duke charged to a 12-0 lead, led 28-17 at the break, and scored
the first 14 points of the second half.

Kansas State closed within eight points in the second half, but
was unable to complete the comeback.