Chelsea Gray tallied 22 points, 5 assists, 4 rebounds, and 2 steals in her first official game since dislocating her knee back on February 17th, leading No. 9 Duke to a 70-58 victory over No. 9 Cal in the Blue Devils’ season opener.
Other big contributors for the Blue Devils included guards Tricia Liston (15 points and 7 rebounds) and Richa Jackson (13 points, 4 rebounds, and a steal) and forward Elizabeth Williams, who tacked on 11 rebounds, an assist, and a steal.
Duke’s defense caused problems all day for Cal, who were limited to just 32.3% (20-62) from the field and 29.4% (5-17) from beyond the arc.
It was an impressive start for a Blue Devil team with lofty expectations after falling just short of a trip to the Final Four last year; the Golden Bears themselves are coming off a season that included a 32-4 finish and a Final Four appearance.
After a barrage of three-pointers from Cal withered Duke’s early, twelve-point lead down to just one at 3:07 mark in the 1st half, the Blue Devils responded, utilizing a healthy dose of Gray, Liston, and Jackson to pull away. When the Golden Bears pulled within nine points on a Mercedes Jefflo jumper with 7:09 remaining the game, they’d never get any closer.
Duke (1-0) returns to action on Thursday, November 14th, against USC-Upstate (2-0). The game will be the Blue Devils’ home opener. Cal (1-1) will travel to Washington, D.C., where they’ll play George Washington on Friday, November 15th.