Jon Scheyer scheduled the Bellarmine Knights because he knew they would be a tough test for his squad. A team that would challenge the assembled youth. After having downed Louisville and having given Clemson all they could handle there was no wonder why the Knights hung in there with the Blue Devils for the first half and kept it interesting.
The Knights used their patience, their cutting, their mismatches on the interior at times to get opportune buckets but Duke aside from a couple of 3-pointers that had no business going in controlled the game. The Blue Devils countered the old school offense with some pinpoint 3-point shooting. The Blue Devils hit on 8 of 17 in the first half and added 7 from 7 from the free throw line. Still a last second long 3 drew the Knights to just 8 below the Blue Devils.
After two 3 pointers to begin the second half, one by Mark Mitchell and the other by Kyle Filipowski, to grow the lead to 14, the Knights responded with a 5-0 run to trim the lead to 9. Another 3 pointer by Jeremy Roach put the Blue Devils back up 12 and the Knights were never able to get any closer.
Kyle Filipowski once again led the Blue Devils with 18 points while pulling down 8 rebounds. Jacob Grandison added 16, going 4-7 from beyond there arc. Jeremy Roach added 10 points and 5 assists to only 1 turnover in the game and Tyrese Proctor added 8 rebounds.
The Blue Devils shot 40% from beyond the arc, going 14 for 35 and 10 of 11 from the free throw line. The Blue Devils turned 11 offensive rebounds into 15 second chance points and got 30 points from their bench on their way to a 74-57 win.
Freshman Kyle Filipowski was Duke’s leading scorer for the fourth time this season with 18 points to match the career-high 18 he scored versus Delaware. He also had eight rebounds and two assists in 20 minutes.
• Filipowski was 4-of-8 from the field, 3-of-5 from three and 7-of-8 at the line.
• Freshman Tyrese Proctor tied Filipowski for the game lead in rebounds with eight and has 18 boards over Duke’s last two games. He also blocked a game-high two shots.
• Graduate Jacob Grandison recorded his third double-digit scoring game this season (59th career) with a season-high 16 points on 6-of-9 from the field and 4-of-7 from three-point range.
• Sophomore Jaylen Blakes played 19 minutes off the bench and was a game-high +15 with eight points, two rebounds and two assists. He has scored five or more points in each game this season.
DUKE HEAD COACH JON SCHEYER
“That was a great win for us. Bellarmine is a tough team to play against. I don’t know the stat yet, but I want to know how many times they scored with under five seconds on the shot clock. I thought our guys, you have a tendency to put your head down after they make a play like that, it can be disheartening. But really, from beginning to end, I thought our guys did a great job of impacting the ball on defense. I thought our pressure bothered them a little bit. And again, they’re as tough as can be and give them all the credit in the world. This is a great win, I’m really proud of us, unusual circumstances, Monday night at 8:30. And we’re ready to go and understanding what a quick turnaround we have this week. And so, for us, it was about being in the moment. I thought we had some really unselfish play sharing the ball. What did we have, 18 assists on 25 made field goals is a big deal. I’m just proud of our effort, proud of this win tonight.”
On the team creating opportunities for open threes:
“I think for us, when you take the right shots, they’re going to go in. I believe that, and not necessarily all the time, but it is the law of averages. We continue to take the right ones, and they’ll fall for us. And tonight, it did. It helps when you have Jacob Grandison on the floor and the way he was shooting tonight. But the quality of shot is something we talk about consistently. And tonight, except for a couple of those, we had great quality in our shot selection.”
On Jaylen Blakes and Jacob Grandison’s impact off the bench:
“Jaylen, and Jacob, they just bring a certain energy. They play the right way. They’re all about winning. Each game for Jaylen and Jacob, it can be rebound, bucket, deflection, they’re winners. And I feel good when they’re on the court. It can be when they’re in, we get better. And that’s something not a lot of teams have when you go to your bench, you can get better. For us, we have that.”
On how important Jaylen Blakes is to the Duke Basketball program:
“Jaylen is everything that Duke basketball is about. He’s got great character. He’s got a really good talent and he really is all about winning. He’s a big-time competitor. He’s somebody that for me, what got me excited when we started recruiting Jaylen, I didn’t know I’d be the head coach but for us just he’s a guy that you want to go through battles with and that you can grow with and I’m really proud of him. He got better. You didn’t necessarily get to see him all the time get better, but he worked his butt off every day, had a great attitude. He competed, went against Jeremy Roach, Trevor Keels and Wendell Moore, every single day. And now here he is making a big impact. And I only see that continuing and progressing in his time here. Jaylen is everything that Duke basketball is about.”
On preparing his team for the Phil Knight Legacy in Portland:
“It’s a great gauge just to see where we’re at right now. I think it’s really important just to take it a game at a time. For us, tomorrow needs to be recovery day, even though we’re flying across the country. We have to get our rest and treatments and all that and then really lock in on Oregon State and go from there and prepare the way we did for this game. It goes quick. We know it’s going to be three high-level games, no matter what the outcome is. I’m excited and I just want to go for it. I think we learned a lot in the Kansas game; we can’t go into it tentative or unsure, we need to go after it and then see what happens.”
JUNIOR GUARD JEREMY ROACH
“[Bellarmine]’s such an unorthodox team. We probably won’t see a team like that ever this season. We wanted to lock in and then get ready for Portland.”
On what it’s like when Duke’s three-point shooters are getting open looks and knocking down shots:
“It’s big. We knew it was going to be a one-dribble-and-kick game and [Bellarmine] was going to be plugging [the lane], so just being shot-ready. We knew the one-dribble kicks were going to be open, second, third drive-and-kicks were going to be open, so we just wanted to move it, get it to both sides, get the defense rotating, and then try to find open spots. We were getting great looks. Coach [Jon Scheyer] kept telling us to be shot-ready.”
“I’m a junior now, I’ve been here two years, and I’ve seen basically everything –- I’ve been to the ACC Tournament, the NCAA Tournament, and [had a season when Duke didn’t make it] to the NCAA Tournament. I’ve seen it all. I think it’s big for me to have that experience, to know what’s going on at all times.”
GRADUATE GUARD JACOB GRANDISON
On the upcoming matchup with Oregon State in Portland:
“The road presents different challenges. We’ve been on the road before – we dropped that game, a lot of lessons to learn from it. I assume this will be a similar type environment, so it’s about learning from the last game we lost on the road and making sure we’re tight and focusing on Duke basketball.”
FRESHMAN CENTER KYLE FILIPOWSKI
“We knew that [Bellarmine was] a three-point shooting team, of course, but we just stuck to running them off the three-point line and staying in front of them. We kind of went against our help defense routine because that would just open up more threes, so we definitely knew where they were going.”
“The Crazies, they really get you into it, you know. Regardless of where we’re playing at, we’ve got to come in with that mentality of playing each possession and sticking to the game plan on offense and defense. I think we’ve done that really good, regardless of where we’ve been, and we’re going to get tested again on this trip to Portland. We saw a very talented Kansas team, and we saw a very hard working, poised Bellarmine team. We’ve really played a lot of different types of teams, and I think that’s prepared us for going to Portland, just being prepared for anything thrown at us. We can adapt and stick to what we know best.”
“I have a lot of high expectations for myself. I’ve always set high standards for myself, individually and playing together as a team. I did go through some struggles and adversity over the summer and preseason, and my teammates have been there with me, my coaches, it’s just been one big family. I think that just the sense of comfortability is what’s making me feel capable of what I’m regularly doing.”