Sportswrap: Men's basketball completes sweep of North Carolina, baseball and softball keep winning

Jeremy Roach puts in a crucial layup in the final minute of Duke's Saturday win at North Carolina.
Jeremy Roach puts in a crucial layup in the final minute of Duke's Saturday win at North Carolina.

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 Feb. 27-March 5.

Men’s basketball

Duke had, essentially, the perfect week. On Tuesday night it bested N.C. State 71-67, exacting its revenge from its 24-point loss to the Wolfpack earlier this season. The win completed the Blue Devils’ season-long undefeated run in Cameron Indoor Stadium, the 19th in program history. Jon Scheyer holds the conference record for most consecutive home wins by a first-year head coach — he is the first to complete his inaugural season undefeated in his own stadium. On Saturday evening, Duke (23-8, 14-6 in ACC) closed out its regular season in Chapel Hill, taking down the rival Tar Heels 62-57 in a nail-biting thriller. Kyle Filipowski led the charge with 22 points and 13 rebounds, his 14th double-double of the season. The win slotted the Blue Devils into the No. 4-seed in the ACC tournament, and they will play their first game Thursday at 2:30 p.m. -Rachael Kaplan

Women’s basketball

The 13th-ranked Blue Devils began their postseason this week as they competed in the ACC tournament. After earning the No. 2-seed, Duke (25-6, 14-4) earned a double-bye before facing off against archrival North Carolina in the quarterfinals. Finally avenging their two regular-season losses, the Blue Devils eked out the victory 44-40 behind double-digit performances from senior Elizabeth Balogun and sophomore Reigan Richardson. The magic of the moment would fade as Duke fell to Virginia Tech in the semifinals 58-37. Shooting 26.8% overall with only one 3-pointer on the day, the Blue Devils struggled against a potent Hokie offense. Now, head coach Kara Lawson and her squad await Selection Sunday to see where they will fall for the NCAA tournament. -Mackenzie Sheehy


The Blue Devils put together another winning week in Durham. Tuesday’s midweek contest presented the first opportunity for a ranked win, and Duke (8-3) capitalized. The Blue Devils dominated No. 20 East Carolina in an extraordinary 9-0 win, as five pitchers combined for the shutout. The typically explosive Pirates managed just three hits, while a Jay Beshears grand slam in the fifth inning allowed Duke to cruise to victory. A few days later, the Blue Devils dropped the first of three games to Princeton but were able to battle back to pick up the series win with a pair of weekend victories. Aside from Friday night, the Duke bats stayed hot with 21-2 and 12-5 victories Saturday and Sunday, respectively. The Blue Devils host Appalachian State and Northeastern for midweek games before beginning conference play against No. 7 Wake Forest. -Elliott Jarnot


Three homers. Seven RBI. A walk-off to earn a series win. That was Ana Gold’s weekend at Duke Softball Stadium. The eighth-ranked Blue Devils dropped the opener against Notre Dame 5-4 before coming back to win the Saturday afternoon showdown with the Irish with the aid of two Gold long balls. Sunday’s rubber match started with five innings of no-hit ball from Jala Wright before she re-entered the game and allowed a three-run seventh-inning homer to put Duke (17-4, 2-1) on the brink, down 3-1. Gold struck again with two on in the bottom half and launched her fifth home run of the season deep to right-center to win it. The Blue Devils head to Charlotte for a Wednesday evening matchup before returning home to host Louisville over the weekend. -Micah Hurewitz

Women’s lacrosse

It was a tale of two teams for No. 11 Duke this week. It rebounded Tuesday, coming out firing after its blowout loss to No. 4 Boston College last weekend. The Blue Devils (4-2, 0-2) defeated Liberty 18-4 on five Katie DeSimone goals, the first of which was the junior attacker’s 100th. Senior goalie Shaye Fitzpatrick notched her third start in Sophia LeRose’s absence and performed exceptionally, tallying 13 saves, easily a career-high. Saturday in Charlotte could not have been more different. Duke was demolished by No. 13 Notre Dame 14-6, only managing one second-half goal. The Blue Devils look to right the ship Saturday against Clemson’s first-year program. -Kaplan

Men’s lacrosse

Bedlam in Upstate New York. After a chaotic 60 minutes of lacrosse, No. 6 Duke came up trumps at the death against Syracuse, with freshman midfielder Charles Balsamo’s sudden-victory goal deciding the contest. The Blue Devils (5-1, 1-0) dinged the post an absurd 12 times throughout the game in their nervy 14-13 victory, paced by junior attackman Brennan O’Neill’s four goals and two assists. The win marks Duke’s first-ever on the Orange’s home turf leading into a Friday evening clash with Loyola at Koskinen Stadium. -Andrew Long

Men’s golf

Duke opened its spring campaign in Puerto Rico for the Dorado Beach Collegiate, a three-day team and individual event. The Blue Devils finished in second place at 36-under, eight strokes behind the champions, Cincinnati. Individually, all Duke golfers placed 31st or better, but junior Ian Siebers and freshmen Ethan Evans and William Love played especially well, with Love winning the tournament outright at 17-under. On Monday and Tuesday, Duke takes on Pinehurst No. 2 for the Wake Forest Invitational, where it hopes to continue its electric start to a promising season. -Sammy Marks

Women’s golf

In its annual trip to Hilton Head Island, S.C., for the Darius Rucker Intercollegiate, Duke struggled en route to a 10th-place finish at +29. Phoebe Brinker got into the hunt with rounds of 72 and 69, and then three early birdies in her final round, but faltered down the stretch en route to a tie for eighth at one-over. Rylie Heflin was the second-best Blue Devil of the week (tie for 30th at +7), while Erica Shepherd, Andie Smith and Megan Furtney all were outside the top 30. Next for Duke is a trip to Augusta, Ga., for the Valspar Augusta Invitational, which is set for March 11-12. -Max Rego

Men’s tennis

Duke faced off against Louisville and Notre Dame in its first two road ACC contests this weekend. On Friday, the Blue Devils (10-4, 3-0) defeated the Cardinals 4-2 to win their second ACC matchup this season. Freshman Pedro Rodenas started strong with his second win against a nationally ranked player and junior Andrew Dale ultimately clinched the win, beating Louisville’s Sergio Hernandez. On Sunday, Duke traveled to Notre Dame to face the Fighting Irish. It won 4-2 again, with Rodenas and senior Garrett Johns clinching the doubles win. The Blue Devils rest this week before returning to ACC road action March 17 against Virginia Tech. -Suresh Kannoth

Women’s tennis

Spring is in the air for Duke, which played its first matches outdoors this weekend and registered victories against No. 14 Notre Dame and Louisville. The 18th-ranked doubles duo of senior Chloe Beck and graduate student Cameron Morra clinched the doubles point in each of the matches, and Beck continued her undefeated start in singles by moving to 12-0 in dual match singles. The Blue Devils (13-2, 3-1) won a ranked matchup against the Fighting Irish 5-2 before dispatching of the Cardinals 7-0 Sunday, moving their home victory streak to 21. Road trips to Clemson and Georgia Tech are next on the schedule for Duke, as it hopes to continue to impress in ACC play. -Dom Fenoglio


Senior captain Jonah Niesenbaum finished in second place at the ACC Championships in Raleigh, becoming the lone Blue Devil to qualify for NCAAs. The Allentown, Pa., native defeated Jake Slinger of Pittsburgh 3-2 to extend the Duke (3-12, 0-5) streak sending a grappler to nationals to 15 years. Logan Agin also put in a strong showing, finishing in fourth place and just outside of an NCAA qualifier spot. Vincent Baker, Jack Wimmer, Gabe Dinette, Logan Ferrero, Patrick Rowland, Jarred Papcsy and Ethan Grimminger all had their seasons come to a close with quarterfinal losses. Niesenbaum and the coaching staff travel to Tulsa, Okla., for the NCAA Championships March 16. -Luke Jovanovic


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