DePaul 79, Providence 76

Jeremiah Kelly scored a career-high 23 points to help end

DePaul’s 24-game losing streak in Big East play with a 79-76

victory over Providence Thursday night.

It was the Blue Demons’ first conference victory since they

defeated Marquette over a year ago, and their first road victory

since they topped Cincinnati on March 6, 2008.

Cleveland Melvin scored 20 points for DePaul (7-18, 1-12) and

Brandon Young put up 17, including 15 in the second half.

The Blue Demons built a 10-point halftime lead as starting Friar

forwards Kadeem Batts and Bilal Dixon each had three fouls before

the break. Providence (14-12, 3-10) slowly came back though,

eventually tying the score at 58.

DePaul put together a quick 8-1 spurt to regain control, but the

Friars’ Marshon Brooks would not back down. He banked in a shot to

bring Providence within four, 69-65, and then converted a

three-point play to trim the margin to one at 69-68.

The Blue Demons answered with a free throw and a hook shot to go

back up four, but Brooks came back with another three-point play

and DePaul led 72-71. With 57 seconds left, Kelly hit a 3-pointer

to bring the margin back to four, but Vincent Council’s 3-pointer

made it a one-point game again.

Then the Friars were forced to foul, and Kelly sank both free

throws. Brooks followed with a layup, and DePaul’s Jimmy Drew

missed his one-and-one free throw. The Friars had the last shot,

but turned the ball over.

Brooks desperately tried to foul Kelly, resulting in an

intentional foul with less than a second left. Kelly made two free

throws to cap the scoring.

Brooks, the nation’s third-leading scorer, led Providence with

28 points, including 10 of his team’s final 13. Duke Mondy added 17

points and seven rebounds.

DePaul shot 75 percent from the free-throw line (15 of 20),

while Providence could only manage to go 14 for 24.