Allen scores 30, No. 17 Duke holds off Wake Forest 79-71
DURHAM, N.C. (AP) Duke found itself in the rarest of situations: A tight game at home against Wake Forest. The 17th-ranked Blue Devils had the one player who always hangs big numbers on the Demon Deacons.
Grayson Allen scored 30 points in Duke's 79-71 victory over Wake Forest on Tuesday night.
It's been a whirlwind of a past few days for Allen, who was publicly reprimanded by the Atlantic Coast Conference for his second tripping incident in a month - a late-game episode against Florida State six nights earlier that made him even more of a lightning rod for criticism.
''Grayson, I think, got back to playing,'' coach Mike Krzyzewski said. ''At Pitt, you could tell, he wasn't. All that affects you. ... He got out of it.''
Marshall Plumlee added 13 points and matched a career high with 17 rebounds, and freshman Brandon Ingram finished with 15 points and 11 rebounds for the Blue Devils (22-8, 11-6).
They overcame some cold early shooting and shot 46 percent in the second half to earn their 17th straight home victory over Wake Forest.
Devin Thomas had 16 points and 13 rebounds and freshman Bryant Crawford scored 15 points for the Demon Deacons (11-19, 2-16). Codi Miller-McIntyre added 13 points, and his layup with 38.6 seconds left pulled them to 76-70.
Allen followed with a free throw with 37.9 seconds left, Miller-McIntyre missed a rushed 3 and Allen hit two more free throws with 26.6 seconds remaining to ice it.
''They made plays down the stretch, and a couple guys, we couldn't stay in front of,'' Wake Forest coach Danny Manning said, ''and that cost us the game.''
This was Allen's third straight game against Wake Forest with at least 24 points. The breakout game of his freshman season came here in last year's meeting, and he scored 27 against them last month in Winston-Salem.
Matt Jones finished with 14 points for the Blue Devils, who were playing their third game in six days. This one came two days after a 14-point loss at Pittsburgh in which Krzyzewski lamented his team's fatigue.
''We're in March now,'' Allen said. ''You have to find your energy for March. There's no excuse for us to be tired or anything like. We're kids in college, and it's March.''
They needed every ounce of energy they could muster to hold off a Wake Forest team that hadn't won here since Tim Duncan suited up in 1997. The Demon Deacons lost each of their last 16 here by double figures, and the last five by at least 18 points.
For much of the night, they didn't play like a team that has lost 14 of 15 - with the lone victory coming against a Boston College team that's winless in the ACC - or a group that hasn't won a league game on the road in more than two full years.
For the first 11 minutes of the second half, the margin was never greater than three points either way. Wake Forest closed to 70-65 on Thomas' free throw with 1:40 left before Chase Jeter hit a foul shot with 1:26 to go to put Duke back up by six. Jeter missed his second attempt and Thomas grabbed the rebound but immediately threw it away to Ingram. Allen then hit two free throws to stretch the lead to 73-65 with 1:14 left.
Wake Forest had 18 turnovers, and Duke turned those into 19 points. ... The Demon Deacons attempted just 17 free throws to the Blue Devils' 38. Duke made 25 while Wake Forest made 10. ... The Blue Devils shot just 29 percent in the first half.
Wake Forest: The Demon Deacons, whose only victory over a Top 25 team came against then-No. 13 Indiana in the Maui Invitational, have not beaten two away from Winston-Salem since 2009-10. Facing a school-record 11th ranked opponent, they fell to 1-10 against them.
Duke: The Blue Devils played three freshmen aside from Ingram, and those three - Derryck Thornton, Luke Kennard and Jeter - were a combined 2 for 12.
Wake Forest plays in the first round of the ACC Tournament on March 8 in Washington.
Duke hosts No. 8 North Carolina on Saturday night.
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