DePaul stuns sluggish Stanford 87-72

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For a once-proud program that would like to become relevant again, DePaul’s 87-72 victory against Stanford was a welcomed sight on Sunday.

In front of another sparse crowd at Allstate Arena, the Blue Demons (3-1) shocked the visitors with pressure defense, seized control midway through the first half and never looked back. DePaul shot 54 percent in the field and forced 21 turnovers.

“Yeah, I’d say so,” head coach Oliver Purnell said when asked if it was type of victory needed to reach the next level. “We definitely need a few more of those. They’re a good team, and we had to play well to win. We had to hold them off, and we did a good job to close the game out.”

Myke Henry led the way with 29 points on 12-of-18 shooting from the field. The Illinois transfer also had six rebounds, three blocked shots and two steals. Jamee Crockett added 19 points, while center Tommy Hamilton contributed 14 more.

“We played with a lot more enthusiasm,” Crockett said. “We had an emphasis in practice on defense, defense, defense, so we came out and just played good defense. We’re a lot more athletic than (Stanford). They’re bigger, but we’re faster.”

Stanford was out of sorts throughout its first true road game of the season. The Blue Demons led by as much as 52-34 early in the second half, and the Cardinal pulled no closer than five points thereafter.

“Give them a lot of credit — DePaul played really focused,” head coach Johnny Dawkins said. “They played well defensively. … Our timing was off from the standpoint of valuing the basketball and putting it in positions to run our offense. We were thrown off a little bit. It was disappointing.”

Stefan Nastic and Chasson Randle scored 16 points each to lead Stanford (4-2), which had received votes the past week that put them two spots outside the Top 25.

Randle, a Pac-12 Player of the Year candidate, converted only 1 of 7 3-pointers and committed seven turnovers.

After Anthony Brown’s follow-up slam gave the Cardinal an 18-16 lead at the 13-minute mark of the first half, they went scoreless for 6:02, the Blue Demons took control of the game with seven straight points and Henry dunked to close out the half on a 25-12 run, putting DePaul up 41-30 at the break.

“It helps our confidence and it helps our team chemistry in the long run,” Henry said. “If we win, everybody is happy. It’s a great feeling.”


Stanford: The Cardinal’s 22 turnovers were the most since they had 22 against Denver on Dec. 2, 2012. … While the game wasn’t a homecoming for G Chasson Randle exactly, at least it was in the general vicinity. The former Rock Island (Ill.) high school star left tickets for several family and friends who made the trip from Quad Cities, located about 170 miles west of Chicago. … The team will take a 12-day break before it resumes play.

DePaul: The meeting was the first since November, 2010, when Stanford scored an 81-74 overtime victory in the 76 Classic tournament in Anaheim. . . Its last victory against a Pac-12 opponent was against Oregon State a year ago. . . The Blue Demons began a four-game, eight-game stretch in which it will also play Northern Illinois, Chicago State and Milwaukee. . . The Blue Demons improved to 163-215 in 12-plus seasons under Director of Athletics Jean Lenti Ponsetto.


Stanford: Hosts Denver on Saturday night, Dec. 13.

DePaul: Hosts Northern Illinois Tuesday night.

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