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No. 2 Blue Devils launch ACC title bid

Henrique Cunha became the first player in ACC history to be named ACC Freshman of the Year and ACC Player of the Year.
Henrique Cunha became the first player in ACC history to be named ACC Freshman of the Year and ACC Player of the Year.

Behind the success of star freshman Henrique Cunha, who was named ACC Player of the Year Thursday, Duke has ripped through conference play with only two major blips.

And this morning, the No. 2 Blue Devils begin their quest to avenge those losses, take down the best team in the country and earn national respect at the ACC tournament in Cary, N.C.

After an opening-round bye, second-seeded Duke (16-7) takes on No. 7 Florida State (13-8), a team it beat in Tallahassee last week, with a spot in the tournament semifinals at stake.

In the semis, the Blue Devils would most likely be matched up with No. 3 North Carolina, and it would mark the teams’ first meeting since their epic, five-hour match two weeks ago that Duke triumphed in.

With that kind of match on the horizon, the Blue Devils might be tempted to look past the Seminoles, but Duke can look back to last weekend to see that danger.

Having not played since beating the Tar Heels three days before, the Blue Devils traveled to Florida for matchups with Miami and Florida State—both teams they expected to beat. The Hurricanes fought back from an early deficit, however, and upset Duke, 4-3.

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