DePaul won its first Big East tournament title Tuesday, holding on against St. John’s for a 65-57 victory at Allstate Arena to sweep dominance in the conference.
The victory gives the Blue Demons (27-6) an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament. But the No. 23-ranked Blue Demons already were assured a tournament invitation, their 12th straight.
The victory, the first for the school in Big East play, gave the Blue Demons a sweep of the league honors as regular season champs and tournament champs.
Coach Doug Bruno also won coach of the year honors.
The Red Storm (22-10) got as close as five at 62-57 with 24 seconds left, but their only lead in the second half came in the first minute of the second half when they led 32-30.
DePaul junior Megan Rogowski hit a three pointer seconds later and DePaul never trailed again.
The Blue Demons were led by junior guard Brittany Hrynko’s 15 points, eight rebounds and six assists.
DePaul senior Jasmine Penny was named tournament MVP.
The teams played a tight first half, with DePaul holding a 30-29 lead at intermission. The Blue Demons went inside to score 20 of their points while the Red Storm made four of six three-point attempts and scored 10 points off eight DePaul turnovers.
The teams had split their regular season meetings, with both winning as visitors.
DePaul entered the game as the Big East regular season champion and ranked No. 23 in the nation. The conference regular season title was the first for DePaul, giving the Blue Demons the No. 1 seed for the tournament.