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Duke Beats Notre Dame to Win the ACC Tournament

Jayson Tatum | Photo: Chris Summerville

The Duke basketball team completed an incredible feat on Saturday night with its 75-69 victory over Notre Dame to win the 2017 ACC Tournament.

It was the fourth victory in four days for the Blue Devils – a span that included wins over Clemson, Louisville, North Carolina and Notre Dame. Duke became the first team in ACC Tournament history to win the title after playing four games in four days.

As it was for much of the tournament, Duke was led by freshman star Jayson Tatum, who had a team-high 19 points and 8 rebounds, and made multiple clutch plays down the stretch to help secure the win.

Tatum was one of four Blue Devils to finish with double digits in scoring, joined by Luke Kennard (named the Tournament MVP) with 16, Amile Jefferson with 14, and Grayson Allen with 10.

And though Matt Jones only finished with three points, it was three points that came at a critical moment as he knocked down a three-pointer with less than a minute remaining to give Duke a four point lead.

Duke was able to withstand an amazing performance from Notre Dame forward Bonzie Colson, who had 29 points and 9 rebounds and showed why he was a legitimate Player of Year candidate in the ACC this season.

The win is Duke’s 20th ACC Tournament championship and the 14th for Mike Krzyzewski, and this has to be one of the sweetest for Coach K, considering the challenges and struggles of this season.

For a team that struggled to find its identity and play with consistency, Duke appears to be playing its best basketball at the most important time of the year. Now, we’ll find out how much this week’s showing in Brooklyn impacts the NCAA Tournament selection committee and the seeding for the Blue Devils.

There is speculation that Duke may have played its way into a No. 1 seed, but regardless of the seeding, this is a group that is fully capable of getting to another Final Four. And after Saturday night’s effort in Brooklyn, it’s a team that has championship experience.