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Jan. 9, 2003

Box Score | Video Highlights

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (AP) – Alana Beard made two free throws witheight-tenths of a second to play, capping a stunning 41-point performance thatlifted top-ranked Duke to a 60-59 victory Thursday night over Virginia.

The Blue Devils (14-0, 2-0 Atlantic Coast Conference) maintained the beststart in school history only because of their best player, who scored 27 of herteam’s 37 second half points, including the last six.

Virginia (6-9, 1-3), coming off a loss at Wake Forest than ended a 49-gamewinning streak against the Demon Deacons, led almost throughout and seemed tohave the victory secure when Beard missed in the final seconds.

But as the ball caromed toward midcourt, Beard gave chase and so did KarenJaeger, who was whistled for a foul with 0:00.8 on the clock.

Beard calmly swished both shots despite the jeering noise of angry fans, andthe Cavaliers didn’t even get off a desperation shot at the end.

Beard finished 16-for-30 from the field, 8-for-10 at the line, and had 10rebounds. The rest of the Blue Devils were 3-for-29 from the field.

The Cavaliers, who played without scoring leaders Cherrise Graham and BrandiTeamer, both suspended for one game for violating team rules, lost their fourthin a row and sixth in seven games.

Anna Crosswhite led Virginia with 13 points and Safia Grant-Fairley had 12,including the shot that for a time looked like a game-winner.

Beard had given Duke its second lead with 48 seconds left when she stole apass intended for Tiffany Sardin and drove for a layup that made it 58-57 Duke.But Grant-Fairley responded with another driving bank with 35.5 seconds left,whipping the crowd into an upset-seeking frenzy.

The Blue Devils won despite their worst half of the season, when they shot23 percent and trailed 28-23 at the break. Beard was 6-for-11 and scored 14points in the half; the rest of her team was 0-for-15 and scored nine.

Leading 49-41 with seven minutes to play, Virginia missed several open shotsfrom in close and was unable to stop Beard, whose slicing moves to the basketand ability to pull up for jumpers proved too much to handle.

She scored all the points in a 9-2 run that pulled Duke within 51-50 with3:09 left. But LaTonya Blue’s two free throws and Grant-Fairley’s drivingbasket sandwiched another Beard basket, made it 55-52.

After Sheana Mosch hit two free throws to again pull Duke within one,Jocelyn Logan-Friend hit two from the line for the Cavaliers, making them13-for-13 in the half and giving them a 57-54 advantage with 1:24 left.

Then Beard finished them off.

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