In what felt like a must win for the Blue Devils, Jon Scheyer’s team got their offense on track. Thanks to five Blue Devils scoring in double figures, No. 17 Duke defeated No. 25 Ohio State, 81-72, Wednesday night at Cameron Indoor Stadium in the final ACC/Big Ten Challenge.
Despite a less than stellar start that saw the Blue Devils turn the ball over 3 times to begin the game, the Blue Devils were able to force some turnovers of their own. Down by as much as 6 in the first half, Jacob Grandison gave Duke its first lead at the 15:08 mark with a put-back layup pushing the Blue Devils ahead, 11-10 and a three-point play by Filipowski leveled the score at 20 apiece with just under nine minutes to play until halftime. Duke’s defense held Ohio State scoreless for over a four-minute stretch while forcing four turnovers to open up a 27-23 lead. The Blue Devils made six of their final nine shots to finish the half with a 39-29 lead.
The Blue Devils would grow the lead in the second half to as much as 13. Ohio State made several runs at the Duke lead and trimmed it to just a 5 point lead 3 times but Duke rallied each time to create distance and put the game away. Jeremy Roach led the second half scoring with 10 points going 6-8 from the free throw line.
Kyle Filipowi led the Blue Devils in scoring despite being in foul trouble, the freshman big poured in 16 points and added 7 rebounds. Point guard Jeremy Roach scored 13 points, 10 of which were in the second half. Roach also dished 5 assists. Tyrese Proctor scored 12 points and went 6-6 from the free throw line. Freshman Dereck Lively had his best game in a Duke uniform scoring 11 points (career high), going 4-5 from the floor and 3-3 from the free throw line. Lively also added 5 rebounds and 2 blocked shots in just 17 minutes of play.
Duke shot the 45.5% from the floor but 38.5% from the 3-point line. Once again the Blue Devils out rebounded their opponent (34 – 31).
- Freshman Kyle Filipowski scored a team-high 16 points, leading five Blue Devils in double figures. It is the second time this season that five scored in double figures (USC Upstate).
- Filipwoski has scored 10+ points in every game this season.
- Filipowski led Duke with three steals – the freshman has eight steals over Duke’s last three games, including a career-high four vs. Xavier.
- Junior Jeremy Roach scored 13 points with five assists in 33 minutes.
- Freshman Tyrese Proctor followed his career-high 16 vs. Purdue with 12 points – his first career consecutive double-digit scoring games.
- Proctor was 6-of-6 at the free throw line and has hit 15 consecutive free throws – the team’s longest streak this season.
- Graduate transfer Ryan Young scored 10 points with five rebounds (three offensive) with two assists in 21 minutes off the bench. He hit 3-of-4 from the field and 4-of-4 at the free throw line.
- The game was Young’s fourth double-digit effort this season and 36th of his career. It also marked his seventh game this season with 5+ rebounds and the 55th of his career.
JUNIOR GUARD JEREMY ROACH
“We stood up to the adversity. [Ohio State] cut it to down to five and then we kind of got the lead back up to eight or nine, so I’m just happy with the performance and how much our resilience was tonight. [A win like this] builds a lot of confidence. Just beating those kinds of teams, it’s big for us for the NCAA Tournament and obviously for our confidence. I think this win tonight was big for us.”
On the perception that the ACC is having a down year:
“Since I’ve been in college, they’ve said the ACC is down every year, and we always have one of the last teams in the NCAA Tournament. I would never say the ACC is weak. Every team from top to bottom can hoop with anybody in the country, so we’ve got to be ready every night for that battle.”
GRADUATE CENTER RYAN YOUNG
On the team’s focus coming out for the second half:
“All older, mature teams – they have a lot of transfers there and they have a lot of guys with a ton of experience – they’re not going to go away down eight to 10 points at halftime or whatever it was. So we had to keep our foot on the gas. There can’t be any different type of play or drop or anything coming out of halftime. I was really glad with the level of maturity and proud of our team with the level of maturity that we showed to not take our foot off the gas and match the same level of physicality and toughness and just overall intensity coming out of halftime.”
“It was just awesome to have a team win like this. We weathered runs really well against them, and we came really tough and physical, which I think a lot of teams, with how young we are, will look to make that an advantage of theirs and come out and try to play harder than us. Personally and as a team, I was really excited to see us come out and match their level of physicality and, at some points, probably exceed it.”
When asked if this game reminded him of the physical play in the Big Ten:
“Yes, absolutely. [Ohio State] has some new guys over there. I played against Zed Key for a while and Justice Sueing, but a lot of their team is new, but they still have the same identity they’ve always had – throwing the ball inside, playing hard, and getting to the rim. Obviously, it’s always great for anybody to play [against this level of competition], but it’s awesome for our young guys to get that kind of experience, even though our freshmen have continually shown, in my opinion, that they’re a pretty physical group themselves. But it’s great for them to get this kind of experience against a tough team like that.”
FRESHMAN CENTER DERECK LIVELY II
On his strong performance tonight:
“It was just really coming down to my teammates finding me, and I’m just grateful for that. I know that my teammates are going to put me in the best position, and I’m going to put them in the best position. It was my game to do well, and I just know that the next game, it could be someone else. And the next game, it might be me. I’m just grateful for winning.”
When asked how Duke was able to refocus after the loss to Purdue:
“There’s no way to not focus on this. It’s a life. You’ve got to move on from your losses, you’ve got to learn from them, and you’ve got to keep moving on. And that’s what we did, and I know we’re going to keep doing that forward.”
DUKE HEAD COACH JON SCHEYER
“Being there in Cameron tonight was a special experience. Coming off a loss, you think about our program, and what it means to me and what it means to us. It’s not necessarily that we’re perfect, but when you get knocked down, you get right back up. And it doesn’t always translate to a win. But I thought that was our attitude going into tonight’s game. And we played nine guys, and all nine of them made some winning plays. I am proud of the effort and proud of the response. We didn’t practice on Monday, because we were getting back from Portland and had a one-day prep. Our focus was just to take what we learned against Purdue and bring it tonight. I’m happy to answer any questions, but really proud of the effort. I thought Cameron was incredible. We’ve never had a whiteout before, I wasn’t sure how I felt about it. And I feel a little better now about it. We’ll see if we do that going forward.”
On Whitehead and Lively finding their rhythm after missing portions of the preseason:
“I hope for all of these freshmen, not just you guys [in the media] but anybody is patient with them. Because like Dereck and Dariq, they missed the most crucial part of any time of the year for freshmen, and that’s the preseason. Dereck missed over a month, and Dariq, almost three months. And so for them, they’ve been working hard, and it’s gonna take them some time. And so for Derek, it’s only been a few weeks. And I just love the mindset, how he keeps working. I felt the way he fought on defense in the Purdue game, he took a huge step. And then tonight, he did the same thing against [Zed] Key. And then for him, it’s just getting comfortable, developing his offensive game. And in fairness to him, we’ve missed him. One of the best things he does is he puts pressure on the rim in pick and roll. And our guards, Jeremy hit him on the lob. He hit him on a couple plays tonight. That’s something we need to look for more. And so again, he’s just gotta stick with it. Really proud of his effort. I thought it was a huge jump. He’s rebounding in traffic more. We just need to keep rolling with all of them.”
On his team responding to Ohio State’s momentum in the second half:
“I thought, including the Xavier game, that was the best we managed a game. We were playing games, and now we’re learning how to win games. When you have a lead, you don’t play the same way if it’s a tie game or if you’re down. Jeremy, I thought he did a really good job Tyrese [Proctor], Jaylen [Blakes], when he was in, just controlling our team. And in those moments, they make a little bit of a run, we have to really execute. And working on the offensive end, I thought we did that. And then down the stretch, some crucial stops were really important for us.”
On the team responding to the physicality of their opponent:
“They responded. There’s still some plays where we need to finish better through contact, we get it right by the rim. We just need to gather and take our time. There’s some finishes for us to be had. But I thought there, I just think for all of them, their mindset of, when you get knocked down, you get right back up. I’ll always be the same way. Our team, I’m just proud of them for doing that.”
On the team entering conference play against Boston College on Saturday:
“It’s crazy that we’re already playing conference games, and we knew this would be a really tough stretch. I think the tendency is that we want to let up, we can’t let up at all. We know Boston College is going to be a physical, tough team and we’ll dive into them tomorrow. I think this preparation has been incredible. You think about the teams we’ve played, the scrimmage we had, I think it’s prepared us well for the rest of this year. We’ve played different kinds of teams. Ohio State, they’re physical like Purdue, but it’s a different kind of team. I mean, obviously they don’t have [Zach] Edey. I think the more games we’re in like this, the better we’ll be down the stretch.”