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Duke basketball vs. Minnesota updates

Duke 89, Minnesota 71 (final): Having built a 15-point lead at the 3:09 mark, Duke slowed its offense down considerably but struggled at times to break an athletic full-court press from the Golden Gophers late in the game. As the clock ticked under 1:30, though, Minnesota backed off its pressure and Duke ran off the remainder of the clock. Seth Curry finished with a remarkable 8-for-11 performance from the floor, including 3-for-3 from beyond the arc. With his 6-for-7 showing at the line, he tallied 25 points as all five Duke scorers finished in double digits and four of the five shot better than 50 percent from the field. Duke weathers athletic, physical play from the Golden Gophers en route to a 17-point victory.

Duke 81, Minnesota 66 (3:45, second half): Things have slowed down considerably here at Atlantis' Imperial Arena, as both teams have played more deliberately and the intensity level has come down slightly. Even with so many players seeing action, there was just no way Minnesota could maintain the frenetic energy level that helped them stick with the Blue Devils early. Lots of free throws for both sides as fatigue and tighter officiating have led to more foul calls.

Duke 72, Minnesota 60 (6:33, second half): The officials have blown the whistle a little more tightly here in the second half, with both teams in the bonus as the clock ticked past 8:30 to play. Duke has continued to control the pace with a minimum of flashy play. Talented Golden Gopher star Rodney Williams has continued to be an increased factor, with eight second-half points and five rebounds after the break. But continued excellent shooting from Seth Curry, strong interior play from Mason Plumlee and two aggressive plays from Rasheed Sulaimon that resulted in a pair of 3-point play opportunities conspired to keep the Golden Gophers at bay. He was the last of Duke's five starters to reach double digits in scoring, and the Blue Devil bench still has yet to score.

Duke 57, Minnesota 46 (11:40, second half): Duke has continued to keep Minnesota at arm's length, despite some highlight-reel plays from the Golden Gophers. Duke has found much more offensive consistency as the game has progressed, with point guard Quinn Cook showing a veteran's ability to decide when to call his own number and when to find teammates. This sort of workmanlike play might be a hallmark of a newly veteran Duke squad, which has not been plagued by the same ups and downs as the Golden Gophers. Cook in particular has looked strong when playing alongside fellow point guard Tyler Thornton, with the duo splitting ball-handling duties.

Duke 52, Minnesota 41 (15:43, second half): Minnesota came out energetically in the second half, attacking the rim and the glass against Duke. Rodney Williams, the Golden Gophers' leading scorer, had been absent with just four points, but an athletic one-handed putback slam over Ryan Kelly reminded the Blue Devils of his talent. But Quinn Cook drained another 3-pointer in a clutch situation to answer Williams' dunk, and the Blue Devils extended their lead to 11 behind tough jumpers from Seth Curry and Kelly.

Duke 40, Minnesota 33 (halftime): Minnesota has worked to keep the pace up against the Blue Devils with constant substitutions. Golden Gopher head coach Tubby Smith has used 11 players, and seven of them have scored. As the clock ticked toward one minute remaining, the teams combined to miss six straight shots and things got physical on the glass. The officials let the teams play, much to the chagrin of Duke head coach Mike Krzyzewski, and Minnesota pressed its advantages in depth and physicality to cut the Duke lead to five. The Blue Devils clearly wanted a whistle or two, with Rasheed Sulaimon jumping up and down several times in frustration when he was called for a shooting foul on Golden Gopher guard Maverick Ahanmisi, who completed the three-point play. A buzzer-beating 3-pointer from Quinn Cook as the horn went off put Duke back up by seven going into the locker room.

Duke 35, Minnesota 24 (3:10, first half): Plumlee re-asserted himself on the glass after a few minutes of absence, with another pair of putbacks and a strong presence on the defensive glass, but Minnesota inserted 6-foot-10, 289-pound freshman Maurice Walker, who became the first Golden Gopher to even challenge the Duke senior's presence. The Blue Devils have Minnesota up to nine turnovers now, and it's amazing for such a physical, frenetic game that only 14 fouls have been called and both teams are shooting over 45 percent.

Duke 25, Minnesota 17 (6:52, first half): Neither team showed any ability to take care of the ball, with six turnovers apiece and many of those turnovers coming back-to-back. Some of the lost balls have been the result of teams playing too fast, but Minnesota has also blocked several Duke lay-ups in transition. As expected against a physical, defensive Golden Gopher team, this is not a pretty game: lots of sloppy turnovers and badly missed shots.

Duke 13, Minnesota 11 (11:25, first half): Tough defense from the Blue Devils is forcing Minnesota to settle for long jumpshots, which have accounted for all the Golden Gopher points, and Minnesota's shooting has improved with time this afternoon. Plumlee continued to make his presence felt on both ends, with a four-point, five-rebound showing early, but Duke's ball handling has shown no improvement so far, with five early turnovers leading to several Minnesota baskets.

Duke 6, Minnesota 2 (15:02, first half): Both teams struggled to keep possession of the ball in the earlygoing, with several turnovers or near-turnovers as teams tried to bring the ball up. Minnesota's tight man-to-man defense forced Duke turnovers and missed shots, but Golden Gopher center Elliott Eliason was no match for Mason Plumlee on the boards. Plumlee had a pair of putbacks on Blue Devil missed shots, and cleaned up on the defensive glass as well. Minnesota has shot very poorly early, with the lone exception being an Andre Hollins jumper that represents the only two Golden Gopher points.

Starters:

Duke: G Quinn Cook, G Seth Curry, G Rasheed Sulaimon, F Ryan Kelly, C Mason Plumlee

Minnesota: G Andre Hollins, G Joe Coleman, G Austin Hollins, F Rodney Williams, C Elliott Eliason

 

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