Duke will return home to Durham, N.C. on Monday night aiming for its third straight win in a clash with visiting Louisville.
Duke (19-8, 10-6 ACC) is coming off a 77-55 road win at Syracuse on Saturday. Jeremy Roach led the way with 17 points, while Kyle Filipowski had 14 points and 12 rebounds. The victory gave the Blue Devils sole possession of sixth place in a messy ACC this season.
Helping the Blue Devils in the victory over Syracuse was their sharp passing. Duke had 22 assists on 30 made baskets. Mark Mitchell had a career-best five assists while Tyrese Proctor finished with six.
Duke also held Syracuse to 55 points, its lowest scoring total in ACC play.
“I thought overall we just made the right play and shared it. I don’t think it’s more complicated than that,” Duke coach Jon Scheyer said. “We didn’t do anything crazy on offense in terms of ‘X-and-O’ wise. But it was more about playing fundamentally sound.”
Duke used a 21-2 run to separate itself from the Orange in the first half. And Duke won in front of an announced crowd of 31,063, the largest on-campus crowd for a college basketball game this season.
The Blue Devils will face a Louisville squad that has struggled mightily this season, but is coming off a surprise victory over fourth-place Clemson on Saturday. The Cardinals (4-23, 2-14 ACC) were powered by 28 points from El Ellis, who is now averaging 27.3 points per game over his last three outings.
Louisville beat Clemson on a night when it was honoring its 2013 team that won the NCAA Tournament.
“They got to do it in front of a championship team,” Louisville coach Kenny Payne said. “The way they played, the fight they played with. We’re going to make mistakes, but we can make up for it with effort and energy.”
Duke is 13-0 at home in Cameron Indoor Stadium this season. Monday’s contest is the third time this season that Duke will play on a Monday after playing on a Saturday. No other ACC team has played more.
Former Duke All-American guard Nolan Smith is an assistant coach at Louisville.
–Field Level Media