7:00 PM ET, January 16, 2006
WORCESTER, Mass. (AP) -- Second-ranked Duke's trip to Massachusetts was successful. Now, the Blue Devils start working for another one in the spring.Abby Waner scored 17 points and Wanisha Smith added 15 as Duke rebounded from its lowest point total of the season with an 84-36 victory over Holy Cross on Monday night.Monique Currie scored 13 points and Alison Bales had 13 points and 11 rebounds for the Blue Devils (17-0), who scored 66 points in a win at No. 22 Boston College on Saturday.It was two games in three days in a state where the Blue Devils would love to return for the Final Four, which will be held at the Boston Garden on April 2 and 4."I would love to come back to Boston," Bales said with a big smile.The Blue Devils used a fullcourt press in the game's opening minutes, leading to steals and easy baskets as they took a 19-4 lead after 4½ minutes. Smith had nine points in the run."We started with a lot of pressure to get everybody into the game," Bales said. "We got a few quick layups."Duke hit 12 of its first 14 shots in taking a 32-6 lead on Monday. In Saturday's 66-52 win over BC, the Blue Devils missed 20 of their first 25 shots."We definitely knew we had to play better," said Currie, who was 5-of-13 from the field.Brittany Keil scored 12 points to lead Holy Cross (6-10), which has lost five game to ranked teams.It was Duke coach Gail Goestenkors' 350th career win."We try to get better," Goestenkors said of the non-conference mismatch. "We worked on our zones in the second half. We worked on switching in our man and came out in a press."Duke returns to Atlantic Coast Conference play on Thursday, hosting North Carolina State, then faces No. 1 Tennessee at Cameron Indoor Stadium next Monday.After the initial spurt, the Blue Devils went deep into their bench, mixing defenses from various zones to man-to-man which continually frustrated the smaller Crusaders."You just hope to slow them down," Holy Cross coach Bill Gibbons said. "Watching their first-half run, it almost gives you a helpless feeling."Goestenkors, who rarely left her seat on the bench during the win, just wanted to take care of the Crusaders quickly."We wanted to put them away early so they didn't have an allusions of grandeur," she said.Duke shot 65 percent (20-of-31) and led 51-16 at halftime. It was Holy Cross' lowest scoring half this season.The Blue Devils opened the second half like the first, using a 17-3 run to take a 69-24 lead with just under 12 minutes left.
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