GAME OF THE DAY: No. 4 Duke 69, No. 2 Virginia 63
It’s been a busy week for the Duke basketball program. First there was Mike Krzyzewski’s 1,000th career win on Sunday, followed by a loss at No. 8 Notre Dame on Wednesday and the dismissal of Rasheed Sulaimon on Thursday. Saturday night, the Blue Devils erased an 11-point second half deficit to hand the previously undefeated Cavaliers their first loss of the season. Quinn Cook and Tyus Jones made huge shots down the stretch, with Jones’ dagger of a three shutting the door with 9.9 seconds remaining. Jones scored 17 points, with Cook and Justise Winslow adding 15 apiece and Jahlil Okafor ten. Malcolm Brogdon scored 17 to lead the way for Virginia but it wasn’t enough, as Duke became the first team to shoot better than 50% against the Cavaliers this season. .
BUZZER-BEATER OF THE NIGHT: If you haven’t seen Trevor Lacey’s buzzer-beater to give N.C. State a road win at Georgia Tech, I suggest you check it out.
Earlier this week, Pitt fell on the road to Virginia Tech and Notre Dame beat Duke. So, naturally, the No. 8 Fighting Irish lost to the Panthers on the road on Saturday as the ACC continued its crazy conference season. Notre Dame had a tough time getting stops in the second half and James Robinson’s go-ahead runner with 12 seconds left gave Pitt the huge win. Robinson had his first career double-double with 14 points and 10 assists while Jamel Artis chipped in 20 points and eight rebounds.
When the Tar Heels led by 18 with 17:51 left in regulation the game was in their favor, as Roy Williams’ team defended well and kept the Cardinals out of the open floor. But Rick Pitino’s team kept fighting, ramping things up on both ends of the floor and eventually forcing overtime. From there it was all Louisville, with Terry Rozier rebounding from a slow start to score 22 points and grab ten rebounds with Montrezl Harrell adding 22 points of his own along with 15 rebounds. Marcus Paige, who left the game in the second half after rolling his ankle (he did return), scored 15 to lead the way for UNC but their foul shooting (11-for-20; minus-16 in points from the foul line) opened the door for a Louisville comeback.
3. No. 1 Kentucky 70, Alabama 55
With Virginia losing there’s just one undefeated team left in college basketball, with that team being the Kentucky Wildcats. UK took care of Alabama in Lexington, with Willie Cauley-Stein and Karl-Anthony Towns leading four double digit scorers with 12 points apiece. The Crimson Tide shot 4-for-16 from three and finished the game with four assists and 13 turnovers. If there’s a negative to take from this game for Kentucky it would be rebounding, as Alabama posted an offensive rebounding percentage of 42.9%. Kentucky’s Trey Lyles missed the game due to illness.
1. Saint Joseph’s Deandre Bembry
The Hawks trailed by 13 at the half against Davidson and made a major second-half rally for a nice home win in the Atlantic 10. Bembry was the catalyst, as he went for 21 points, 17 rebounds and seven assists.
2. Illinois’ Malcolm Hill
Hill drove and made a go-ahead layup with a little over four seconds left to give Illinois a Big Ten home win over Penn State. Hill scored 27 and picked up the slack as Rayvonte Rice and Aaron Cosby were suspended before the game.
3. Drexel guard Damion Lee
Lee tallied 32 points on 10-for-14 shooting, 13 rebounds and three assists in the Dragons’ 85-76 win over UNCW.
4. USC Upstate’s Ty Greene
In USC Upstate’s 79-74 win at North Florida, Greene scored 39 points (13-for-19 FG, 8-for-11 3PT) to go along with four rebounds and three steals. UNF entered the game 6-0 in Atlantic Sun play.
1. Auburn’s Trayvon Reed
The freshman big man was ejected from the Tigers’ loss to Tennessee as he committed a silly technical foul after not lining up properly during a free throw. Reed only played three minutes and was also assessed a flagrant foul before being ejected. Reed on Saturday was like the basketball version of a hockey goon.
Saturday was a bad day for the Bluejays, who lost 67-40 to Georgetown in Omaha. Greg McDermott’s team shot 20.8% (11-for-53) from the field.
3. Colorado’s Xavier Johnson
The junior forward had a tough go of it in the Buffaloes’ 72-59 loss at UCLA, going 0-for-7 from the field and failing to score.
THE REST OF THE TOP 25
- Wisconsin earned a road win at Iowa as the No. 5 Badgers had 24 points and nine rebounds from Player of the Year candidate Frank Kaminsky.
- Kansas jumped all over in-state rival Kansas State in the first half and never looked back as Perry Ellis had 16 points and 12 rebounds. The 9th-ranked Jayhawks moved to 7-1 in the Big 12 with the win.
- It was tight for a half, but No. 15 Iowa State pulled away from TCU for an 83-66 home win. Georges Niang finished with 23 points and eight rebounds.
- After only leading by six at the break, No. 17 West Virginia pulled away in the second half for an easy win over Texas Tech. Devin Williams led the Mountaineers with 18 points and eight rebounds.
- No. 14 VCU suffered its first conference loss, 64-55 to Richmond, but the bigger loss was senior point guard Briante Weber. Weber will miss the remainder of the season after tearing the ACL, MCL and meniscus in his right knee.
- Defense was a big key for No. 21 Georgetown as they held Creighton without a field goal for 17 minutes in a road Big East win.
- Seth Tuttle scored a career-high 29 points and grabbed seven rebounds to lead No. 18 Northern Iowa to a 70-54 win over No. 12 Wichita State. The two teams are now tied atop the Missouri Valley standings.
- Kenny Chery accounted for 23 points, five assists and four rebounds, and Royce O’Neale added 20, eight rebounds and five assists as No. 20 Baylor rolled to an 83-60 win over No. 19 Texas.
- No. 24 Oklahoma made things a bit more interesting than they needed to be down the stretch at Oklahoma State, but the Sooners managed to remain in front and win 64-56. Jordan Woodard led four starters in double figures with 17 points.
- No. 3 Gonzaga took care of business at home, beat Memphis 82-64 with Przemek Karnowski scoring 17 to lead four players in double figures.
- Tulsa moved to 9-0 in the American with an overtime win over feisty South Florida. Junior forward Rashad Smith led the Golden Hurricane with 21 points.
- Florida escaped with a controversial win over Arkansas as Michael Frazier was fouled with 1.9 seconds left and made both free throws for the one-point win.
- Sterling Gibbs netted 22 points as Seton Hall defeated Xavier for a Big East home win. In his first game back from injury, Isaiah Whitehead had 19 points.
- Tennessee cheered the return of former head coach Bruce Pearl and then cheered even more when the Volunteers beat Pearl’s Auburn team 71-63. Armani Moore had 19 points and 13 rebounds to lead Tennessee.
- St. John’s held off Providence at home as Sir’Dominic Pointer had 20 points, including a sweet buzzer-beating 3-pointer to end the first half.
- Temple held off Tulane for an American home win as Quenton DeCosey finished with a team-high 17 points.
- A surprising win for Cleveland State over Green Bay in the Horizon League as Trey Lewis had 25 points and 12 rebounds.
- Despite 25 points and 20 rebounds from Jordan Mickey, LSU lost on the road to Mississippi State.
- Rhode Island is now in sole possession of second place in the Atlantic 10 after beating George Washington, 59-55. The Rams may be young but they don’t lack for talent, led by sophomores Hassan Martin (15 points, ten rebounds) and E.C. Matthews (ten points, four rebounds) and freshman Jared Terrell (17 points, six steals).
- Texas A&M is a team to keep an eye on with regards to at-large bids in the SEC. Billy Kennedy’s team has now won six straight, as they beat Vanderbilt 69-58 in College Station.
- South Dakota State moved to 8-2 in the Summit League with a 69-39 win over Denver, limiting the Pioneers to 12-for-36 shooting with 16 turnovers.
- Wyoming and San Diego State remain tied atop the Mountain West standings, with both winning comfortably at home. The Cowboys took out Nevada, with the Aztecs beating Utah State by 20.
- Washington State beat Stanford 89-88 in Pullman, with DaVonte’ Lacy scoring 25 points and Josh Hawkinson posting another double-double with 14 points and 11 rebounds. Wazzu shot 55.3% from the field, and they won despite Chasson Randle scoring 33 points.
- Murray State moved to 9-0 in OVC play with a 65-62 win over UT-Martin.
- Stephen Austin is now 8-0 in Southland play after beating Texas A&M-Corpus Christi 61-51. Brad Underwood is the fifth-fastest head coach to 50 wins in Division I history.
- Texas Southern moved into a tie for first place in the SWAC with an 80-65 win over Alabama State, which entered the game 7-0 in conference play.
- In a matchup of two one-loss teams in Big Sky play, Sacramento State defended their home court in beating Montana 70-69 on a Dylan Garrity three with six seconds remaining. The Hornets are now 9-1 in Big Sky games.