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Duke Hangs on to Beat Yale & Reach Sweet 16

Photo: Mark L. Baer-USATSI
Photo: Mark L. Baer-USATSI

Duke is headed back to the Sweet 16! That’s the most important thing to take from today’s game.

The Blue Devils nearly suffered one of the all-time second half collapses, but they held on to secure the 71-64 victory over Yale and advance to Anaheim.

In the first half, Duke played arguably its best 20 minutes of the entire season, with stifling defense and incredible outside shooting. It held a 48-25 halftime lead and appeared on its way to coasting to a spot in the Sweet 16.

The 2nd half was the exact opposite, and Yale nearly erased a 27-point deficit.

Fortunately, Duke had the luxury of having the best player in the building in Brandon Ingram, who made some clutch baskets down the stretch and finished with 25 points. The team also got a key defensive play by Grayson Allen in the closing seconds as he forced Yale’s Brandon Sherrod into a difficult reverse layup that he missed.

Allen also finished with a game high 29 points on 10-of-15 shooting from the field, including 5-of-7 from 3-point range.

Duke fans probably don’t feel particularly great about this win due to how the squad struggled in the 2nd half, but it gets to fight another round.

It’s earned a spot in the Sweet 16, which is quite an accomplishment considering how it started conference play earlier this season.

And if we can see more of the Duke team that showed up in the first half against Yale, this is a group that’s capable of surviving a few more rounds.

3 comments

  1. A tale of two halves, but this time of the year a win is a win. I hope they are prepared for the next round and can get over this west region hex. They showed great resolve last part of game. Good job guys

  2. What does any of this have to do with Duke going to Sweet 16 this year? Article may be right, may not be. I watch my team, pull hard for them. If you don’t like Duke, fine, but this article you submitted has no bearing on 2016 team. Send it to Judge Judy

  3. We can beat Oregon.  I know it’s silly to judge teams on previous games but St. Joe’s really had a good chance of knocking them off last night.  Oregon while athletic, doesn’t seem to be an overly physical team that has typically given Duke fits this year.  Our defense will have to be on because they definitely shoot the ball well but I think we have at least a 50/50 shot of winning this game.  I’m thinking we stick Matt Jones on the Dorsey kid who seems to be their most potent outside threat.  They also have trouble defending the 3 ball (statistically speaking) so if we’re hitting our shots then we are going to put an enormous amount of pressure on them.  We’re playing with house money from this point on and whatever happens, i’m good with.  Despite the obvious struggles defensively against UNCW/Yale, i’m really liking the vibe around this team.  Let’s shock the world Thursday and p**s everyone off.