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Duke, State Put On An Epic Game In ACC Tournament

Duke and State put on one of the best shows in recent ACC Tournament memory.

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Mar 9, 2016; Washington, DC, USA; Duke Blue Devils center Marshall Plumlee (40) looks to shoot as he is fouled by North Carolina State Wolfpack guard Maverick Rowan (24) in the first half during day two of the ACC conference tournament at Verizon Cen
Mar 9, 2016; Washington, DC, USA; Duke Blue Devils center Marshall Plumlee (40) looks to shoot as he is fouled by North Carolina State Wolfpack guard Maverick Rowan (24) in the first half during day two of the ACC conference tournament at Verizon Cen
Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

People are going to be talking about this game for a long time because Duke and State put on an absolute ACC Tournament Classic Wednesday afternoon.

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Duke won 92-89, but it was a hard-fought victory to say the least, with both teams getting banged up.

Cat Barber appeared to hurt his shoulder again in the second half and left before returning. He favored his shoulder for some time.

Then Marshall Plumlee appeared to break his nose. He went to the bench to stop the bleeding and when he came back he was like a wrecking crew. We'll come back to that.

The first half was worthy of Everett Case and Vic Bubas as it was racehorse speed. State shot 62.9% and 60% from three point range. Duke clocked in at 61.3% and 50% from deep.

Barber had 15 at the half, while Abdul-Malik Abu had 11 and Caleb Martin 12. Maverick Rowan finished the half with nine.

Brandon Ingram had 19 at the half but he tweaked an ankle. No telling how much it'll bother him Thursday.

Luke Kennard had 11 at the break.

As it turned out, the first half was just the warm up for a second half passion play.

You could probably start it when Plumlee got hit in the nose with 8:03 left and Duke up 81-75.

Or maybe when he checked back in with 5:26 left. Plumlee went full hulk mode on State. He took the inbounds pass straight to the hole, missed, got the rebound, got the ball back and went back to the basket - and to the line.

Duke began to pull away and had a nine point lead at 86-77 with 5:13 left. State looked and played tired.

And then, suddenly, State wasn't tired. Not anymore.

Cat Barber pulled off a four-point play to cut the lead, causing Jeff Capel to bury his face in his hands.

Just like that it was a five point game again.

Kennard put up a jumper which hung on the rim about as long as possible befoere falling in.

Maverick Rown missed and Kennard grabbed the rebound.

Allen missed a long three and Barber went coast-to-coast with the rebound to cut it back to 83-88.

After a timeout, Plumlee turned the ball over and Allen was called for a flagrant foul on Barber, who was off to the races. Barber split on the foul shots and then Allen picked up his fourth foul - nervous moment for Duke.

Barber was fouled by Matt Jones on another drive and Barber split again to make it 88-85 with 2:52 left.

Jones missed on a drive and Barber shook Allen to make it 88-87.

Allen drew a foul and split his shots to give Duke a two point lead.

State's Cody Martin threw a nice fake at Ingram and got a floater in the lane to tie it up at 89-89.

State had gone on a 12-3 run at this point in less than four minutes.

Ingram drove and missed but Plumlee picked up the rebound and scored and drew the foul on Cody Martin, who fouled out.

Plumlee's foul shot was the last point of the game.

Rowan fired up a contested three with about a minute left which missed.

Allen drove left with :02 left on the shotclock and his shot was blocked out of bounds by Caleb Martin with :30.8 left.

Kennard tossed up a shot he was lucky to get off and State headed back downcourt. Barber drove and tried to pass it to Beejay Anya, who didn't see it coming.

State then fouled Kennard, a near-90% free throw shooter, with :1.3 left.

Kennard's shot was short and Abu grabbed the rebound: time out State.

The clock was reset to :0.2 and State got the ball in to Barber who crossed halfcourt and let fly...and wasn't close.

It was an amazing game and we feel bad for State because that team certainly played well enough to win.

Not that bad though.

Barber finished with 29 points and seven assists. Abu had 19 points and nine boards. Caleb Martin had 16 while Maverick Rowan added 15.

For Duke, Plumlee was huge, racking up 17 points, 10 rebounds and four blocks. Kennard and Ingram both had 22 while Allen managed 19.

Chase Jeter had one of his better games off the bench, scoring five points and grabbing three boards. Thornton had four points and three assists.

It was a great, great ACC game.