Sportswrap: Men's basketball upset by NC State in Elite 8, softball and baseball grab top-10 series wins

Jeremy Roach holds his head in his hands after Duke's Elite Eight loss to N.C. State.
Jeremy Roach holds his head in his hands after Duke's Elite Eight loss to N.C. State.

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 March 25-31:

Men’s basketball

The Blue Devils’ dance played its final notes Sunday, as they fell to No. 11-seed and tournament Cinderella N.C. State 76-64 in the Elite Eight after upsetting No. 1-seed Houston Friday night. Freshman guard Jared McCain led the way for Duke with 32 points — tying Zion Williamson for the program’s scoring record in the NCAA tournament — but his heroics were not nearly enough to get by the Wolfpack. Graduate forward DJ Burns Jr. bullied his way through the Blue Devils in the post en route to 29 points, and graduate guard DJ Horne chipped in 20 of his own. The loss brings an end to a Duke season that started with a preseason-No. 2 ranking and sky-high expectations. Head coach Jon Scheyer will now have to do it all over again, and his players will have some tough decisions. McCain and sophomore center Kyle Filipowski are projected by most experts to go in the lottery of the NBA Draft should they declare, and each other member of the starting five will face a similar dilemma. Pair that with another impressive recruiting class that includes No. 1 overall player Cooper Flagg, and Duke fans are in for another eventful offseason. - Dom Fenoglio

Women’s basketball

While hopes were high when the Blue Devils traveled to Portland, Ore., to take on No. 3-seed UConn, Duke ultimately fell short against the Huskies. The Blue Devils struggled through the first three-and-a-half quarters of the game, finding themselves down 42-27 after three periods of play. There was a strong attempt to rally in the final minutes of the game that saw Duke claw its way back to just a five-point deficit, but it ultimately fell short 53-45 in the Sweet 16 to mark the end of its 23-24 campaign. That being said, Duke is losing just two players to the end of their eligibility and with another impressive recruiting class en route, the Blue Devils will be looking to come back even stronger this fall. -Martin Heintzelman


The Blue Devils put their spring practice schedule on pause Thursday to host the annual Pro Day, where 13 prospects performed in front of representatives from each of the 32 NFL franchises. Star offensive lineman Graham Barton was the centerpiece, as the former star left tackle impressed with quick times in speed and agility tests including posting an unofficial 4.84-second 40-yard-dash. Former captains DeWayne Carter and Jacob Monk put on one final showing in Durham before they look to make a career on the professional level, taking part in positional drills in front of scouts and front office members. Other participants included Jalon Calhoun, Jaylen Coleman and Ja’Mion Franklin, also a captain. -Elliott Jarnot


Following a disheartening conference series loss to N.C. State, the Blue Devils got the bounce-back week they needed, going 3-1 and snagging a top-10 series win. First up was a midweek matchup with Campbell, which Duke (20-8, 6-6 in the ACC) won 11-1 behind four perfect innings from junior David Boisvert and multi-RBI days from each of its top three hitters in the order in Zac Morris, Ben Miller and AJ Gracia. Then, No. 8 Virginia came to town for the weekend series. After splitting the first two games, Duke took Saturday’s rubber match 7-4 thanks to a five-run seventh inning to take the lead for good. Junior Jonathan Santucci and Duke won Thursday’s opener 9-4 before the Cavaliers took Friday’s matchup 7-3 to set up the pivotal third game. The Blue Devils travel to take on Liberty Tuesday before facing Miami in a home weekend series. -Jarnot


In a series with major ACC title implications, No. 4 Duke’s mettle was on full display as they fended off No. 10 Virginia Tech. It was a three-game weekend set, and the Blue Devils (29-3, 10-12) were able to grind out three wins. Sophomore Aminah Vega topped the series scoresheet with nine RBIs, including a pair of timely two-run shots in game two to spur on Duke’s comeback victory — a game it won 6-5. The first and last games were far more comfortable for the Blue Devils, with scores of 14-5 (decided by mercy rule) and 5-2, respectively. Pitchers Cassidy Curd, Lillie Walker and Jala Wright combined to stifle the high-powered Hokies offense. It was a statement weekend for Duke, serving to reassert themselves as serious national title contenders ahead of a midweek game against Charlotte and a weekend series against North Carolina. -Luke Rinaldi

Men’s lacrosse

The third-ranked Blue Devils played just one game this week, as then-No. 17 Boston University came to town. In a wet, sloppy game, Duke (10-2, 0-1) used grit and consistent effort to narrowly defeat the Terriers 11-10. While they didn’t dominate, the Blue Devils played smartly and never backed down, even as the game was tied deep into the fourth quarter. Then, a late goal from freshman midfielder Benn Johnston off a set play put them up for good. The victory marked both the end of the nonconference season but also head coach John Danowski’s 250th at the helm of the Blue Devils. After a week off, his quest for another will continue against No. 1 Notre Dame Sunday in Koskinen Stadium in what will be Duke’s toughest test of the year. -Ryan Hamner

Women’s lacrosse

After a disheartening loss to Boston College, Duke dominated with two big wins on the week to move to 8-5 overall. Tuesday night saw the Blue Devils (8-5, 3-3) pull off a close 14-12 victory against East Carolina after leading 12-5 heading into the locker room. Junior Mattie Shearer and senior Katie DeSimone spearheaded the scoring effort with three goals apiece. Riding the momentum, Duke achieved a monumental 15-10 upset Saturday afternoon against No. 8 Virginia. After going down 4-3 at the beginning of the second quarter, the Blue Devils tallied five unanswered goals to maintain the lead for the rest of the contest. Graduate attacker Caroline DeBellis had a career-high six goals, while DeSimone once again shined with four to bring her tally to 52 on the year. Duke will now set its sights on a Monday night clash with Campbell at home. -Mackenzie Sheehy

Men’s tennis

No. 14 Duke continued its strong run of form with two big home wins against ACC rivals Louisville and Notre Dame. The Blue Devils (15-7, 7-2) began both matches by winning the doubles point, and continued to build on that momentum with strong performances on each of the top three courts. The trio of senior Garrett Johns, sophomore Pedro Rodenas and graduate student Andrew Zhang went a combined 6-0 in dominant displays across the weekend. On the lower courts, juniors Connor Krug and Jake Krug and freshman Alexander Visser did just enough to secure comfortable wins for Duke with a combined 3-3 record overall. Next up, the Blue Devils welcome archrival North Carolina to Ambler Tennis Stadium Saturday. -Rodrigo Amare

Women’s tennis

The 19th-ranked Blue Devils fell to rival North Carolina this weekend in disappointing fashion. The matchup, which ended in a 4-1 score, was filled with missed opportunities for the Blue Devils (12-6, 5-4). Seven sets ended 7-6 or 7-5, with the Tar Heels taking all but one of them. Duke’s top players struggled to close out sets, including Shavit Kimchi, Karolina Berankova and Brianna Shvets. After losing the first set 7-5, Kimchi mounted a comeback with a 5-2 lead in the second before Tar Heel Fiona Crawley won five games in a row to seal the defeat. The only win of the tournament came from graduate student Iuliia Bryzgalova, who came away with a 6-2, 6-2 victory against North Carolina’s Anika Yarlagadda. The Blue Devils will compete at home again Friday against Virginia Tech and Sunday against Virginia. -Emily Wang

Men’s golf

The Blue Devils headed down to Palm City, Fla., to compete in the Valspar Collegiate, a stacked field featuring the likes of Florida State, Vanderbilt and Arkansas. Duke finished sixth at the event, boosted by an 11-under final round. Ethan Evans and Luke Sample paved the way for the Blue Devils with outstanding 6-under and 3-under final days, respectively, while Daniel Choi and William love also put together below-par or at-par showings. Up next for Duke is a trip to Raleigh for the Stitch Intercollegiate a week from Friday before the ACC Championships in Charlotte. -Andrew Long

Women’s golf

The Blue Devils closed out the regular season with a tie for first at the Old Barnwell Match Play, demonstrating growth and placing behind South Carolina only after a tiebreaker. On the first day, Duke went 3-2-0 against Florida State and 5-0-0 against Mississippi State. The Blue Devils wrapped up the competition by tying South Carolina at 1-1-3 on day two. Graduate student Emma McMyler put up strong performances in each match, leaving Aiken, S.C., with three wins against top-ranked opponents, while seniors Anne Chen and Phoebe Brinker each collected a pair of wins as well. Next week, McMyler and Brinker will head to the Augusta National Women’s Amateur before the team reconvenes in competition at the April 18-21 ACC Championship in Wilmington, N.C. -Ryan Kilgallen

Track and field

The Blue Devils spent their weekend at the Raleigh Relays, slotting new program records and personal bests to put up a well-rounded performance on the women’s side and a decent one on the men’s. At the helm of things was junior Amina Maatoug’s third-place finish in the 5k, which established her as the fourth-fastest runner of that event in the nation. On the field, freshman Julia Magliaro earned stripes with a personal best in the javelin (No. 4 in program history) and a second-place finish. Christian Johnson and Aimar Palma Simo highlighted the men’s efforts with first and second place in the hammer throw and new school records as well. Duke looks to continue the outdoor season next weekend at the VertKlasse Meeting in High Point, N.C. -Sophie Levenson


Duke rowers battled through tough storms this weekend to secure key wins at the ACC/Big 10 Double Dual in Columbus, Ohio. Even with heavy downpours and torrential headwinds, four boats rowed to victory against Ohio State and Michigan. The 3V8 boat won both of its head-to-head races, as did the 2V8 team. In the morning, the 2V4 cruised to victory against the Buckeyes, while it was the V4 that bounced back in the afternoon to secure another win against the Wolverines. The upsets against both teams, ranked No. 12 and No. 9 respectively, were confidence-boosters for No. 15 Duke as it looks ahead to the Big 10 Invitational in Sarasota, Fla. in two weeks. -Abby DiSalvo


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