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Duke Rolls Over Syracuse 85-71

A much easier win than we ever thought it would be

NCAA Basketball: N.C. State at Duke
Mar 2, 2020; Durham, North Carolina, USA; Duke Blue Devils guard Jordan Goldwire (14) reacts after hitting a three pointer during the first half against the North Carolina State Wolfpack at Cameron Indoor Stadium. 
Rob Kinnan-USA TODAY Sports

Duke and Syracuse both came into Monday’s game after demanding games on Saturday and both had the possibility of tired legs.

Only one seemed to have them though as Duke blew Syracuse out, building an early lead and maintaining it throughout the game.

Duke won its fourth game and its confidence is visibly growing and while that’s true for the team in general and just about every player, it’s especially true for Mark Williams.

The kid’s game is growing before our very eyes. We’re seeing him turn from a somewhat gawky and uncertain big man into a guy who can dominate. He started doing it on defense and Monday night he dominated on offense against Syracuse.

Williams shot 9-11 for 18 points, had 11 rebounds and two blocks and altered quite a few more. Watching him grow into a dominant young big man is one of the greatest pleasures of this season.

But it’s not just him. Jeremy Roach hasn’t gotten nearly the praise he should. He’s become much more careful with the ball and finished with seven assists and three turnovers. He also shot 5-7 including 4-5 from three point range for 14 points.

DJ Steward had 21 and matched Roach with seven assists and three turnovers.

Wendell Moore has become an indispensable player in many ways. He’s become much more steady and his versatility allows him to fill in just about anywhere.

And it says volumes about Matthew Hurt that 5-11 is an off game.

Still, Syracuse didn’t go down without a fight. In the second half, the Orange started to press and for just a minute you could tell they thought they could do to Duke what they did to Notre Dame on Saturday. They were even down 20, just like Saturday.

But Duke wasn’t going to buckle. The Blue Devils started to break Syracuse’s press and made them pay for it and Jim Boeheim was forced to back off though they did press again near the end.

Duke also seriously dented Syracuse’s three point game. Joe Girard was completely shut out. Allan Griffin shot 1-5 from deep. Only Buddy Boeheim was effective, hitting 5-9.

Duke isn’t ranked at 11-8 in this Covid-stained season but anyone who has watched this team lately understands they’re playing as well as most ranked teams. The Devils are as hot as anyone and are back in the NCAA conversation. Talk about a turnaround.

3Jim will be along soon with his take.

Duke vs. Syracuse score: Blue Devils remain hot as Orange fail to boost NCAA Tournament resume


Player Of The Game vs. Syracuse

This poll is closed

  • 0%
    Wendell Moore
    (3 votes)
  • 0%
    Matthew Hurt
    (4 votes)
  • 88%
    Mark Williams
    (592 votes)
  • 5%
    DJ Steward
    (34 votes)
  • 3%
    Jeremy Roach
    (25 votes)
  • 0%
    Henry Coleman
    (0 votes)
  • 0%
    Jaemyn Brakefield
    (1 vote)
  • 1%
    Joey Baker
    (7 votes)
  • 0%
    Jordan Goldwire
    (6 votes)
672 votes total Vote Now