Mount Pleasant — Asia Durr has taught a lot of lessons to opponents during her decorated four years at Louisville.
The All-American also has learned a few things along the way, like the virtue of patience.
Durr scored 26 of her 31 points in the second half and No. 3 Louisville held off Central Michigan 72-68 on Thursday night to improve to 12-0 for the second straight season.
“I really wasn’t too focused on scoring,” Durr said. “One thing I’ve learned over the past three or four years is whenever you’re patient, it’s still going to come back to you. That’s all I was trying to do.”
Durr held off the charging Chippewas late, scoring 11 straight Louisville points down the stretch, capping off her 10-for-11 night at the free-throw line with five late to clinch the win.
“We treated this game like it was any other game,” Central Michigan coach Sue Guevara said. “We just happened to be playing against a good, athletic basketball team who had an All-American.”
Durr finished 10-of-18 shooting from the field and 10 for 11 on free throws, adding four assists and playing all 40 minutes.
Sam Fuehring added 14 points for the Cardinals, who had played six straight home games before traveling to meet the defending Mid-American Conference champions, who advanced to the Sweet 16 last season.
Reyna Frost had 22 points and 13 rebounds for Central Michigan (8-2). Micaela Kelly added 19 points, and Presley Hudson had 13. Frost and Hudson, both seniors, played the whole way for Guevara.
Louisville led 32-28 at halftime, and opened a 44-35 lead after a 12-5 lead early in the second half.
But the Chippewas went on a 12-2 run as a Gabrielle Bird 3-pointer gave them their only lead at 47-46 with 2:25 left in the third quarter.
Durr would score a layup with the foul, converting the three-point play to take the lead back, setting up her dominant fourth quarter.
“Her 3 wasn’t falling but she drove and attacked,” Louisville coach Jeff Walz said about Durr, who was 1-for-7 on 3-pointers. “So I was really proud of her because she made an adjustment. Overall just a really good ball game for her.”
Central Michigan outrebounded Louisville, 37-32, including 23-14 in the first half.
The Chippewas were led by Frost, who needs 27 rebounds to tie the all-time MAC record for career boards.
“Our butts are getting kicked on the glass,” said Durr, who did not have a rebound. “There has to be improvement on that.”
In a meeting of the sixth-best scorer and 13th-best nationally, Central Michigan’s Hudson (23.3 average) had three first-half points and Durr (21.7) had five at halftime.
While Durr led her team to victory, Hudson scored 10 of her 13 points in the fourth quarter. Hudson has the most made 3-pointers in MAC history, a record she broke Saturday.
Walz brought the Cardinals to Mount Pleasant to play in a hostile environment and found it with 2,833 loud fans at McGuirk Arena.
“It’s good for our game,” Walz said. “I think it’s good for our kids to have the chance to play in this environment.”
The Chippewas will need more efforts like Thursday to get back to the NCAA Tournament for consecutive seasons for the first time since 1983-84.
More state women
(At) No. 22 Michigan State 89, Florida Atlantic 74: Jenna Allen scored 23 points and grabbed 10 rebounds, Nia Clouden tied her career-high with 18 points and Michigan State eased to its seventh straight victory.
Allen posted her third double-double this season. Sidney Cooks added 15 points and nine rebounds as MSU (10-1) improved to 7-0 at home. The Spartans shot 53 percent, including 41 percent from the arc (9 of 22).
MSU shot 61 percent in the first quarter, taking a 29-12 lead in scoring a season-best total for an opening period. The lead was 16 at halftime and 22 after three when Claire Hendrickson banked in a half-court 3-pointer . The Owls finished the final five minutes of the game with a 13-4 run.
Ra’Kyra Gabriel scored 13 points and Myka Johnson Matthews and Glenisha Harkless 11 each for FAU, which made 45 percent of their 3-point shots (13 of 29) but were outscored in the paint 42-24 and 20-8 off turnovers.
North Dakota 62, Western Michigan 50: Jill Morton scored 14 and Lexi Klabo added 12 for North Dakota (4-8), which defeated Western in the Hatter Classic at Stetson University in DeLand, Fla. Deja Wimby had 17 points for the Broncos (4-5) and recorded the 400th assist of her career in the first quarter.
UNC Greensboro 49, Eastern Michigan 44: At the West Palm Beach Invitational, Nadine Soliman scored 17 and Alexus Willey added 10 for UNC Greensboro (6-6), which ended Eastern’s three-game win streak. Corrione Cardwell and Danielle Minott each had 12 points for the Eagles (6-3), which wraps up tournament play against Butler at 1 p.m. Friday.
(At) Purdue 95, Ohio 67: Carsen Edwards scored 30 points and Ryan Cline added 19 as the Boilermakers (7-5) finally broke out of their offensive funk and ran away from Ohio for their most lopsided victory this season.
Purdue ended a two-game losing streak, winning for only the second time in six games. The Boilermakers finished with a season-high point total and hardly resembled the team that went nearly one full month without topping the 80-point mark.
While the Boilermakers seemed to find their comfort zone back inside Mackey Arena for the first time in two weeks, the other explanation may have been Painter’s rare lineup change. Evan Boudreaux started in place of center Matt Haarms, who was one of the Big Ten’s top bench players last season.
Ben Vander Plas and Teyvion Kirk each scored 15 for Ohio (7-4), which had a two-game winning streak end.
No. 2 Duke 69, No. 12 Texas Tech 58: Zion Williamson had 17 points, 13 rebounds and Duke fans roaring each time he touched the ball before he fouled out, and the Blue Devils ended Texas Tech’s unbeaten start at Madison Square Garden.
RJ Barrett scored 16 points for the Blue Devils (11-1) and the program earned its 35th win at MSG. With the Garden rocking from the tip, the Blue Devils must have felt like they had a home game.
Cam Reddish hit a late 3-pointer for a 63-57 lead that sealed the win in the first meeting between the programs. Both reached the Elite Eight last season and the atmosphere had a late-March feel.
Jarrett Culver scored 25 points for the Red Raiders (10-1) in their first loss since the NCAA Tournament.
(At) No. 21 Houston 60, Utah State 50: Armoni Brooks scored all of his 15 points in the second half and Houston overcame a sluggish first half to rally past Utah State.
Brooks shot 5 for 10 in the second half and led the way as the Cougars (11-0) came back from a 10-point halftime deficit for their 24th consecutive home win. DeJon Jarreau had 10 points off the bench for Houston, which shot 32 percent from the field, including 39 percent in the second half.
Dwayne Brown Jr. had 19 points and seven rebounds off the bench, and Quinn Taylor added 14 points and nine rebounds for Utah State (9-3), which shot 37 percent from the field but was 5 for 19 in the second half. Utah State lost its 15th straight against an AP Top 25 opponent.