RALEIGH, N.C. – Terquavion Smith scored 24 points and North Carolina State jumped all over No. 16 Duke from the opening tip, rolling to an 84-60 win on Wednesday night in the long-running series between Atlantic Coast Conference neighbors.
Jarkel Joiner added 21 points, nine assists and six rebounds for the Wolfpack (12-4, 2-3 ACC), who scored the game’s first 15 points and led by 22 by halftime in a shocking romp.
While the Wolfpack pounced, the Blue Devils (11-4, 2-2) watched early shots roll off the rim or be swatted away. They compounded their problems by piling up turnovers in a game that quickly got away.
N.C. State shot 47% and made 10 3-pointers, nine coming from its its dynamic backcourt duo. More impressively, the Wolfpack scored 30 points off turnovers on a night that Kevin Keatts’ squad repeatedly pushed the tempo.
One highlight came when Joiner hit a corner 3-pointer just before the halftime horn with Duke’s Jeremy Roach defending on his hip. Joiner gave a yell toward the courtside fans, then giddily backed away to join his teammates heading to the locker room with a 44-22 lead.
And early in the second, Joiner and Smith got loose together in transition. First Joiner hit Smith for a right-wing 3-pointer on the break, then did it again – only this time falling to the court while delivering the pass.
No matter. Joiner still raised both arms while laying on his back near the baseline as though signaling the shot was good as it swished through the net. By that point, the Wolfpack led 54-28 with 17:05 left and never let Duke closer than 22 again.
Freshman Kyle Filipowski scored 14 points to lead Duke, which shot 40% and just 5 of 15 from 3-point range. Duke also committed 21 turnovers, many fueling the Wolfpack’s 25 fast-break points.
Duke: It was a jarring result for the Blue Devils in a year of change, from Jon Scheyer in his debut season as the successor to retired Hall of Famer Mike Krzyzewski to a roster with 11 new players and the nation’s No. 1-ranked recruiting class. But the Blue Devils never looked comfortable, confident or capable of consistently creating quality looks as the deficit ballooned. It amounted to a second rough showing on the road, the other coming in a loss at Wake Forest a few days before Christmas.
N.C. State: This one can ease some of the frustration amid ACC losses to now-No. 12 Miami, Pittsburgh and Clemson. Smith and Joiner showed their potential to impose their will from the wings. More impressively, the Wolfpack did this without starter and team rebounding leader Jack Clark, who is out indefinitely after suffering a core muscle injury late last week at Clemson.
Duke: Plays a second straight road game, traveling to Boston College on Saturday.
N.C. State: Visits Virginia Tech on Saturday.