Duke Overwhelms Michigan State

ShawnKrest

What a difference a week makes.

Seven days after Duke suffered an embarrassing upset loss at home to Stephen F. Austin, the Blue Devils had one of its best performances of the season, beating No. 11 Michigan State on the road, 87-75.

The Blue Devils, reeling with shattered confidence from the improbable home loss, were also playing without Cassius Stanley, who is recovering from a hamstring injury. Foul trouble limited Wendell Moore to 10 minutes, and center Vernon Carey battled leg cramps during the second half.

Somehow, however, Duke dominated the Spartans, building a lead that grew as large as 22 points.

Carey scored 26 points, sixth most by a Blue Devil in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge and most since Kyrie Irving in 2010. He added 11 rebounds and three blocks, as the Spartans had no answer for the big man inside.

Point guard Tre Jones scored 20 points with 12 assists and three steals. Jones played with fire against MSU point guard Cassius Winston, holding the All America candidate to 4-of-14 shooting and got a measure of revenge after an Elite Eight loss in March left Jones crying in the locker room.

“For me, it was personal,” he said after Duke’s win.

Duke finished the game with 11 blocks and 10 steals.

Joey Baker, Matthew Hurt and Javin DeLaurier all scored in double figures. DeLaurier was a perfect 5-for-5 from the field, while Baker hit his first five shots.

“It was a heck of a win for kids,” coach Mike Krzyzewski said. “Our big guys won the battle, and that’s the Javin we need. Tre was tremendous. The look on his face and how he led our team gave them a lot of confidence. He set the tone for the team.”

Duke led by 16 at the half, with a 10-point edge on points in the paint and a 12-4 advantage in points off turnovers. The Blue Devils withstood an early MSU spurt to start the second half and broke the game open with an 11-2 run midway through the second half.

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