RALEIGH—Although Duke took an early 11-point lead at PNC Arena, N.C. State is not going down as easily as it did in its first two ACC matchups.

The Blue Devils trail 43-41 against the Wolfpack through 20 minutes at PNC Arena, exploiting their size advantage but struggling to contain the hosts on defense. N.C. State's frontcourt has matched up fairly well with Marvin Bagley III and Wendell Carter Jr. on the glass—the Blue Devils' freshman duo grabbed four offensive boards and helped the team score just nine second-chance points, but Bagley and point guard Trevon Duval lead all scorers with 11 points.

The Wolfpack have been pressing Duke defensively and have forced nine turnovers, and the Blue Devils are not sharing the ball well with just five assists. But when the visitors get settled in their halfcourt offense, Braxton Beverly is struggling to stay in front of point guard Trevon Duval, who scored the Blue Devils' first four points. Duval has also added four rebounds and three assists to his 11 points.

Duke went on an early 7-0 run to take a three-point lead when Gary Trent Jr. knocked down a 3-pointer from the corner, and the Blue Devils remained in front the rest of the half.

After Abdul-Malik Abu went to the bench with two fouls less than 10 minutes into the game, the Blue Devils scored five straight points to build a double-digit lead, but N.C. State responded with a 15-0 run in less than two minutes to take a 31-27 lead. Graduate student Sam Hunt put the Wolfpack in front with a triple from the corner to the delight of the sellout crowd in Raleigh, forcing Duke head coach Mike Krzyzewski to call a timeout.

Trent gave the Blue Devils the lead again with a floater in the lane, but Omer Yurtseven tied it up and put N.C. State back in the lead with a pair of putbacks in the final minute. The 7-foot sophomore has 10 points.

Here are a few observations from the first half:

  • Duke is not in as much foul trouble as it was in its last game against Florida State, when its four freshmen starters all finished the game with four fouls, but Trent and Carter both have two fouls thus far.
  • With sophomore center Marques Bolden sidelined by a knee injury, Krzyzewski limited his rotation to seven men, with Javin DeLaurier and Alex O'Connell coming off the bench.
  • The Blue Devils played a 2-3 zone for most of the half after starting the night in man-to-man defense.
  • N.C. State has enjoyed a very balanced attack, with eight players scoring between three and 10 points. Its bench is outscoring Duke's reserves 17-0.