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DePaul uses career night from Campbell to beat Seton Hall

Kelly+Campbell+finished+with+9+points%2C+8+rebounds+and+5+assists+in+the+second+half+of+Thursday%27s+loss+to+Marquette%0A%28Photo+Courtesy+of+DePaul+Athletics%29
Kelly Campbell finished with 9 points, 8 rebounds and 5 assists in the second half of Thursday's loss to Marquette
(Photo Courtesy of DePaul Athletics)

Kelly Campbell finished with 9 points, 8 rebounds and 5 assists in the second half of Thursday's loss to Marquette (Photo Courtesy of DePaul Athletics)

Kelly Campbell finished with 9 points, 8 rebounds and 5 assists in the second half of Thursday's loss to Marquette (Photo Courtesy of DePaul Athletics)

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In search of their fifth-consecutive regular season title, it was a dominant start for the DePaul Blue Demons (9-4) as they raced past Seton Hall (8-4) for an 89-66 victory at McGrath-Phillips Arena Thursday night.

The Blue Demons had six players finish in double figures, but were led by Kelly Campbell who finished with her first career triple double and became fourth DePaul women’s players to accomplish this collecting 11 points, 12 rebounds and 11 assists. Campbell, who wasn’t aware during the game that she was closing in on such a milestone, credited her teammates, including Ashton Millender who finished with a game high 21 points for making shots.

“Really just my teammates making shots,” Campbell said. “Like Ashton making those two shots at the end getting me those two assists, really in the beginning getting offensive rebounds helping other people get shots helped me out a lot, really just all around helped my teammates couldn’t have done it without them.”

Kelly Campbell had 11 points, 12 rebounds and 11 assists on the night. (Photo Courtesy of DePaul Athletics)

The Blue Demons started slow before finding their rhythm midway through the first quarter. They quickly jumped out to a 17-8 lead converting four of their first seven three-point attempts and closed out the the first 10 minutes with a 13-point lead. DePaul head coach Doug Bruno credited his bench with the giving the team a lift after a slow start and their performance throughout the night.

“I thought we got a great lift off the bench from Lauren Prochaska and Chante Stonewall, Deja Cage later in the first half also gave us a great bench lift,” Bruno said. “Once we got our juices flowing and our motor flowing our players did a really good job.”

Coming in averaging 13 made three-pointers per game, the Blue Demons already had 11 threes in the first half. The Blue Demons tied a school record with 19 three-pointers, something they also did against No. 11 Syracuse in 2016.

In opening up a 19-point lead, the Blue Demons also put on a passing clinic with 14 assists on 16 made baskets. They ended the night with 29 assists on 31 baskets, but after the game coach Bruno while pleased with that number, still hopes to see cleaner perimeter passes moving forward in conference play.

“That’s a huge deal for our program,” Bruno said. “But of the 29 assists, we were still very unkempt if you will, passes that were simple perimeter passes that had to be rescued by the catcher.”

Mart’e Grays led the way in the first half with 11 points and five rebounds, while Deja Cage also gave a big lift nine first-half points.

Millender contributed 7 of DePaul’s 19 three-pointers on her way to a team high 21 points. (Photo Courtesy of DePaul Athletics)

In the second half, the Blue Demons leading scorer Ashton Millender came alive with 18 points while shooting six of nine from behind the three-point arc. With a number of players scoring in double figures, Millender credited her teammates for opening the floor for her to take advantage of the Pirates zone defense, as well as, putting pressure on them to defend a variety of scorers at all times.

“It takes pressure off me,” Millender said. “It adds pressure to the defense because we have a lot of weapons on the floor and weapons coming off the bench.”

Coming out of the break, the Blue Demons maintained their 20-point advantage despite shooting only 35 percent in the third quarter. Defensively they held their own however holding the Pirates to just 39 percent on the game, and 35 percent in the second half.
After being named to the Big East honor roll earlier this week, it was a tough night for Amarah Coleman who finished with one point in six minutes of action while battling foul trouble from the start. After the game, DePaul’s head coach stressed keeping Coleman out of foul trouble is important moving forward, while also finding a small positive for her to take home heading into Saturday.

“Foul trouble has been her nemesis this season,” Bruno said. “She’s got to figure out how to keep it clean, stay out of foul trouble, we told her after the game the silver-lining is she will be well rested for St. Johns, Amarah Coleman is still important to this team as well.”

It’s a quick turnaround for the Blue Demons who host St. John’s Saturday night who fell to Marquette 74-72 in their opener in Milwaukee.

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DePaul uses career night from Campbell to beat Seton Hall