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Sportswrap: Women's basketball pushes winning streak to 11, men's basketball falters on the road

Celeste Taylor and Duke women's basketball took down Georgia Tech to stay undefeated in the ACC.
Celeste Taylor and Duke women's basketball took down Georgia Tech to stay undefeated in the ACC.

Sportswrap is your one-stop shop for everything Duke athletics, where we’ll recap how each of Duke’s sports currently in competition performed over the last week and give a brief look ahead. Here’s our recap for the week of Jan. 9-15.

Men’s basketball

It was a week of two halves for the 24th-ranked Blue Devils, who stormed back for a memorable 77-69 win against Pittsburgh Wednesday evening before dropping a close contest 72-64 on the road against high-flying Clemson. Kyle Filipowski and Tyrese Proctor spearheaded Duke’s offense in both games, with a career-best 28 points for the former against the Panthers and 17 points for the latter against the Tigers. Next up is a home date with a strong Miami squad Saturday afternoon as the Blue Devils (13-5, 4-3 in the ACC) look to keep their unbeaten run at Cameron Indoor Stadium rolling. -Andrew Long

Women’s basketball

Don't look now, but head coach Kara Lawson's Blue Devils haven't lost a game since November, sit atop the ACC standings, own the second-best scoring defense in the Power 5 and have now won 11 consecutive games. This past week, No. 16 Duke (16-1, 6-0) took care of business against a pair of outmatched opponents, first using a fiery second half to down Clemson 66-56 at home and then overcoming its second halftime deficit of the season—the other coming in its lone loss to No. 4 UConn—to pull away for the 65-47 win at Georgia Tech. Senior guard Celeste Taylor continued to play at an All-ACC level, leading the Blue Devils with 19 and 13 points in the two wins. On Thursday, Duke pits its winning streak against archrival North Carolina in Chapel Hill before closing the week out Sunday against Syracuse. -Jonathan Levitan

Track and field

The Blue Devils wrapped up their first week back at school with a quick trip down Tobacco Road to compete in the Dick Taylor Carolina Challenge at the Eddie Smith Fieldhouse in Chapel Hill. Athletes who competed for Duke started their new year off with a showing particularly admirable given the time they have had off for winter break. Senior Brynn King and graduate student Zach McWhorter both dominated the pole vault, respectively winning the women’s and men’s competitions. On the track itself, sophomore Abby Geiser took first in the 60m race, while the team as a whole earned itself 11 top-three finishes. -Sophie Levenson

Swimming and diving

Duke took two losses Saturday, with both the men and women falling to No. 5/4 N.C. State. After a 199-96 loss, the Blue Devil men (2-3) dropped their second-straight dual, and the No. 22 women (4-1) suffered their first loss of the year in the 168-130 defeat. Juniors Sarah Foley and Catherine Belyakov and freshman Kaelyn Gridley took home all three podium spots in the 200-yard breaststroke on the women’s side, while sophomore Michael Jiang swam a season-best in the 400-yard IM (4:01.69) to win the event. Next, Duke heads to Chapel Hill to face North Carolina Jan. 27. -Garrett Spooner

Fencing

Duke started its spring season Sunday at the Penn State Duals in State College, Pa. The No. 10 women’s team finished with a 4-2 record, while the No. 7 men’s team fell just short at 3-2. Both the men’s and women’s saber teams found success, dropping only two total matchups against a formidable Columbia team. This won’t be their last time in the state—we’ll see the Blue Devils back in Pennsylvania for the Philadelphia Invitational Jan. 21. -Audrey Wang

Women’s tennis

The Blue Devils opened their spring season with three matches at home this week against Furman, Charleston Southern and Charlotte. The preseason No. 6 squad looked in form, winning all three matches with relative ease. Graduate transfers Iuliia Bryzgalova, Brianna Shvets and Cameron Morra all impressed in their dual match debuts as Blue Devils, as did freshman Katie Codd. Duke (3-0) next plays Jan. 28 at ITA Kickoff Weekend in Durham, where it will first face VCU. -Dom Fenoglio

Men’s tennis

No. 20 Duke is starting the season 1-0 after sweeping Hawaii to win its first dual match of the season. All six singles players were victorious, and the clinching doubles match was Duke’s top-ranked tandem of seniors Michael Heller and Andrew Zhang. Prior to the match against the Rainbow Warriors, the Blue Devils (1-0) competed in the Hawaii Invitational, a three-team tournament featuring Hawaii and California. Duke went 6-6 in this event, but stood out inside the doubles lines, going 3-1. Next up for the Blue Devils is a return home Friday against Memphis. -Ranjan Jindal

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